How does it feel to be close to a stage victory in the Giro? So close you can almost feel the prosecco bubbles exploding on your tongue as you take that first sweet sip atop the podium… only to have it all taken away in the last few metres. Heartbreaking hardly describes it, does it? Such was the fate of Cannondale’s Alan Marangoni on Stage 10 of the 2015 Giro d’Italia.
Marangoni’s article for the Peloton Brief is both personal and extraordinary, grabbing attention and setting the scene with the opening line: “The first nine days of this Giro have been hell, an on-going war. Long days, some of them seemingly never-ending. The day off was, for many of us, like a huge breath of oxygen when you’re on the verge of drowning.”
This immediately casts me back to that day in May when an Italian-flavoured breakaway pulled off the impossible and stayed away to take the win. I had the VeloVoices write up and even now I remember willing them on, wanting all of them to take the win because not one of them deserved to lose. But that’s not how our beautiful sport works – there has to be a victor and the disappointment of losing.
If you do one thing today, take the time to read Marangoni’s piece. I promise you won’t regret it. I defy you not to feel anything but respect … and maybe keep the tissues handy. But remember that heartache is always matched by hope, as Alan says:
Though the anger will remain for a long time to come, this unforgettable adventure will leave me stronger. Today I reached one more milestone in understanding my life. I can win. I can win a stage in a major tour, and I don’t give a damn how things went down today. Nobody’s going to give me anything for free in this world, but that doesn’t matter: I’ll go and get it myself. All I have to do is believe it, believe it deep down, and carry with me a touch of madness.
We believe right along with you Alan. May the madness never desert you #Forza!!
Relive it all here