Giro d’Italia 2021
Stage 8: Foggia – Guardia Sanframondi (170 km)
Of course, some regret remains. Because it was really close, a breath, a nothing. Francesco Gavazzi was simply sumptuous in a day that was unforgettable for the colours of Eolo-Kometa: he was in the breakaway of the day, convinced in seeking victory until the end. And we all hoped, and we all dreamed. The dream didn’t come true, with our Gavazzi finishing second behind Frenchman Lafay. There were tears of disappointment, for something that came close and slipped away.
A little regret remains, but it only lasts a few seconds. Because just a moment is enough to show the greatness of what happened, of what is happening: a second place in the Giro d’Italia for a team like ours is something beautiful. And it’s also beautiful the feeling that these guys will try, they will try again: because there is a goal to reach, and this goal is the victory of a stage.
So: bravo, bravo Gava. Bravo for catching the right breakaway (and it was not easy, with the first part of the race that the group did at full throttle), bravo for being there to work and to give the right changes, bravo for trying to chase Lafay when he realized that he was the man to beat. Well done for running “as an Eolo-Kometa”. And bravo, indeed very bravo, also to our Fortunato: still with the group of the best, in a Giro d’Italia that for him is becoming every day incredibly more beautiful.
Yes, ok: let’s also write a little chronicle of the stage. Let’s write about that strong start with many attempts of sprints and counter-sprints and with a breakaway that couldn’t go away. We write about the good action, with our Gavazzi and eight other riders (Gougeard, Carboni, Oliveira, Lafay, Gossens, Arndt, Gaviria and Campenaerts) that reached up to 7 minutes of advantage. We write about the final with the attempt of Carboni and Campenaerts and the comeback of Lafay, with our Gava who did everything he could to catch him without succeeding and arriving second at 35″. Behind, at 4’48”, the group of the best: with them, our Fortunato.
And tomorrow, we will climb: we will climb a lot. First mountain stage of the Giro, with the start from Castel di Sangro and the uphill arrival in Campo Felice. 158 kilometres and 4 GPM: shake-ups in the general classification are expected.
Francesco Gavazzi: “There is a bit of regret, it is clear: because these are not opportunities that happen often in a career so I hoped and I tried until the end. Maybe, with hindsight, I should have chased Lafay first, but he was really strong. My legs are good and I’ll certainly try again from now until the end of the Giro: and that’s a promise”.