The opening press conference of Giro Donne 2023 was held yesterday at the Fellini Hall of Acquasanta park in Piazza Martiri Perugini. The Italian stage race organised by Starlight will involve over 160 athletes and runs from today, 30th June to 9th July.
The press conference featured speeches by the General Director of the tour, Roberto Ruini, the Federal Councillor with the delegation to women’s cycling, Serena Danesi as well as by representatives of the municipality of Chianciano Terme and the Tuscany Region, which host the grand opening of the competition. The town’s mayor Andrea Marchetti and the vice president of the Tuscan Regional Council Stefano Scaramelli proudly added their thoughts on the prestigious race. Giuseppe Rivolta then illustrated the Tuscan stages of Giro Donne 2023.
Roberto Ruini – general director of Giro Donne said, “Giro d’Italia Donne, together with Tour de France, is the most important women’s race in the world. It is an honour to represent it and organise it. Tomorrow we will see the start of a high-quality edition with great presence on the territory. All these stages are only made possible thanks to the close collaboration with the municipalities hosting us every day for departures and arrivals. I thank Chianciano Terme and Tuscany for this grand opening, together with all those who believed in our project. I would like to thank the Italian Cycling Federation in particular, which has taken on and respected the commitment with the television coverage, guaranteeing the visibility of Giro Donne in Italy and worldwide. I believe that in events like these one organisation is not enough, it is necessary to collaborate together. Thanks to the many volunteers as well, if Giro Donne exists it is also thanks to them. At this moment, over 620 people are engaged for the tour, it is a complex organisation requiring commitment and passion.”
Andrea Marchetti – mayor of Chianciano Terme added, “Thanks to the organisation of Giro Donne for giving us this great opportunity. It is a historic moment for our municipality. Thanks to Stefano Scaramelli, who is a representative of our territory and gave us incredible support. When council member Nardi told me about the possibility of hosting the opening of Giro Donne, it seemed like something impossible to me, but thanks to the commitment of everyone, we eventually succeeded. It is an honour to be in the national and international limelight, I hope that both athletes and professionals enjoy their stay, and I look forward to having more opportunities to host sporting events of this type in the future.”
Stefano Scaramelli – vice-president of the Tuscan regional council said, “It is a great satisfaction for the Tuscany region to host the grand opening of Giro Donne, cycling is sport and life. For us, it is a fundamental opportunity to promote sport, but also the beauty of our territory, thanks to this race there will be a great enhancement of Chianciano Terme, a pearl for tourism also hosting several bike routes. The day after tomorrow, the competition will set foot in Marradi, a hamlet which was hit by the recent flood but was still able to host this important stage race. I thank all the Tuscan municipalities for their collaboration and as a former cyclist I can only say that it is a huge satisfaction for me to have promoted this event involving my dearest passion.”
Serena Danesi – FCI National Federal Councillor with delegation for women’s cycling told the conference, “The women’s cycling movement is growing every year and I am happy to see the quality and level achieved. We are not yet at the level of the male scene, but the path taken is definitely the right one. Giro Donne is coherently confirmed as an excellence of this sector and Roberto Ruini has proven to be an innovator able to grasp the change, bringing the race back to the World Tour with high organisational standards. Personally, I hope to see our girls fight for the stages and the overall ranking. It will not be easy because, starting from Chianciano and then for the next 10 days, we will see the strongest athletes challenging each other on each finish line. I can’t wait to witness this incredible challenge, in defence of which I have also invested myself personally. Good luck to all!”
Giuseppe Rivolta – technical collaborator of Giro Donne said, “It is an honour for me to be in Chianciano. For this initiative, I had the great support of Fabio Nardi to build a first stage with a path that does not have great roughness but is not flat either. In the second stage we will arrive in Marradi for a really interesting segment, the final part will go through Passo della Colla, which is really challenging. It will already determine which athletes can fight for the overall ranking. I thank everyone, especially Roberto Ruini who has allowed me to work with him in these three years.”
Fabio Nardi – councillor for Sport of Chianciano Terme added, “I am an all-round sport lover and of cycling in particular. I’ve organised the competition Gran Fondo di Chianciano Terme for years and I hope to be able to restart after 5 years of hiatus. I thank the organisation and the Italian Federation for the great collaboration.”
Dr. Roberto Poggiani – civil protection manager of Chianciano Terme concluded, “As soon as Fabio Nardi informed me that Chianciano would host the grand opening of Giro Donne I immediately got to work. Our association is like a family, we managed to organise a stage as safe as possible for both the girls and the citizens.”
The best female riders will race the 928 kilometres of this, the longest-running stage race in women’s cycling, over the coming days, with the coveted pink jersey awarded to the GC winner when the race reaches Olbia, Sardinia on July 9th.