Mave Evans (@mavisevans) was lucky enough to go to the presentation ceremony and the first two stages of the Giro d’Italia and she shared her photographs and experiences with us. (All photographs ©MaveEvans)
I love everything about cycling – the riders, the equipment and the overall buzz and excitement of live cycling. What could be a better combination than cycling and Italy? Going to Italy to watch the Giro and meeting other cycling fans, that’s what! I was travelling to Italy on my own, when en route I received a tweet from @meowclank, who was already in Naples. We met up and just clicked – two cycling-crazy girls going to the Giro! It was brilliant.
The presentation was great as we were so close to the riders and were able to shout and applaud their appearance. I caught Bradley Wiggins on camera – he pulled a funny face at me. That made me laugh.
The security at the Giro is so different from the Tour. You can get very close to the riders – it was great to be able to talk to the guys on Sky (they’re my boys!) and the other British riders like Alex Dowsett and Steve Cummings. As there were very few barriers, we could move around, getting different views of the race. At one stage of the race, Meowclank and I were eating a pizza and drinking beer at a roadside restaurant before running to the roadside to cheer the guys as the peloton rode by. Only in Italy!
While I was standing by the road, the Sky car drove by. I was proudly wearing my Sky tee-shirt and I gave them a big wave – the driver sounded the horn in one of those crazy tones that go on and on just for me. That tickled me! I also got the opportunity to speak to Scott Mitchell [@modcyclingphoto], Sky’s official photographer. Everyone seems so willing to say hello, even when they’re working!
Even the biggest riders are friendly. After the stage, we were near the team buses, watching the riders come in, and Cadel Evans saw us. He smiled and said hello – I’d spoken to him earlier and he recognised me. You don’t really get that at the Tour.
Meowclank went off on her travels so I was alone for stage two, which meant a ferry ride to Ischia – it was funny to see all the team buses with the riders and bikes making their way on the ferry as well! It was quite an operation. As it was the team time trial, there was plenty of time to see the guys as they were waiting for their time slot.
I got a chance to talk to Alex Dowsett. He’d had a crash in stage one and I was worried about him. As we were chatting, who should come up to him but Taylor Phinney, who started to massage his knee!
I later tweeted Alex about it and this was his reply:
One of the best moments was when I got to speak to Mark Cavendish. I was standing next to some holidaymakers – not cycling fans – and when I saw Mark, I mentioned his name to them. He heard me so he stopped to have a chat. He was very polite and actually looked embarrassed when I told him how brilliant I thought his stage one win was. It was a great trip as I got to see so much and talk to so many of my favourite riders.
I also love the fact that when you go to races, the other fans are so friendly. You can always find someone to have a drink with while talking about our shared love of cycling. I would encourage every fan to try to make it to a race – it’s a great atmosphere and an unforgettable experience!