Tuesday, May 21, 2024

The Day the Big Men Cried

 The Day the Big Men Cried

1988 was the year, Gavia was the pass.

Contrast THIS to what's going-on at the Giro d'Italia today.

First the iconic Passo Stelvio was deleted from the Giro's 16th stage due to the risk of avalanche, they said. Instead the plan was to detour around over the Umbrail Pass rather than continue over Stelvio since the avalanche risks were on the descent rather than the climb.

Overnight weather at today's start reminds me of what was described at the the start of the infamous Gavia stage, but back then the race went on, creating the spectacle and memories pro cycling likes to exploit.

But now, despite having clothing far superior than the old wool and lycra stuff they wore back in 1988, not-to-mention bicycles with far more efficient braking systems than rubber blocks pushing on the sides of aluminum rims - today's stage has been neutered.

Instead, the riders will be driven over/around to a flat road around 120 kms from the finish and will race along the rest of the original planned route to the finish above the town of Ortisei.

Was the decision back in 1988 the wrong one? Perhaps, but nobody was killed or seriously injured while the epic stage entered the history books as something...well...epic. Legendary might be a better word? Is pro cycling destined never to repeat such exploits?

Is it now and forever to be "The Day the Little Men Whined" so they didn't have to get wet or cold?

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