Simon Yates: Britain's Latest Superstar

Are we Brits becoming a bit complacent about our fellow countrymen winning stages of and leading grand tours? The cycling cognoscenti certainly aren’t, as can be seen by the deluge of praise on social media for Simon Yates who wears pink at this year’s Giro. One just wishes that the wider British public were aware of what a fantastic achievement it is.

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The Demise of the Unwritten Rules of the Peloton?

As Tom Dumoulin lost two minutes of his lead in the Giro d’Italia on Tuesday as a result of a mistimed ‘comfort break’, fans and commentators were up in arms about the fact that his rivals took advantage of him being caught short. To many it seemed that the likes of Nibali, Zakarin and Quintana were breaking some of the age-old unwritten rules of professional cycling - that you don’t exploit a rider’s mechanical (or other) misfortune, especially when they’re wearing the leader’s jersey.

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Giro d'Italia by Colin O'Brien Review

With the unmistakable silhouette of Marco Pantani on a pink background on its front cover, this book had us reaching out to the shelf to pick it up with some excitement. The Pirate, as he was known, seems to encapsulate so much of what the Giro d’Italia is about.

Now in its 100th edition, this beautiful Grand Tour has often been defined by its unpredictability, its heroism, suffering and betrayals. Add to that feuds, glamour, rivalries that split the nation and, of course passionate racing, you have a gripping and fascinating yarn to tell.

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Giro d'Italia: 100 years of Passion, Romance and Grit

What’s your favourite Grand Tour? Is it the glitz, glamour and massive publicity machine of the Tour de France? Perhaps you prefer the more informal Vuelta? For many a fan, and for many a professional rider, it’s the romance of the Maglia Rosa of the Giro d’Italia, not the Maillot Jaune, which gets the heart beating faster and the hairs to prick up on the back of the neck. 

The Maglia Rosa: just the sound of it whisks you back to those heroic days of Coppi, Bartali, merino wool jerseys and gravelled roads. Classic, elegant, skinny steel bikes from Bianchi, De Rosa and Pinarello. The beautiful pink jersey named after that classic pink newspaper, La Gazetta dello Sport.

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