All for (almost) nothing

Giro stage: Prologue
UP at 7:00
Breakfast – 7:30
Same hotel tonight so we don’t have to have suitcases out to go to the next hotel.
Depart for start at 3:00
Race start – First rider 7:00 PM
On the teams daily schedule, breakfast (today) was at 8:00 for the staff. But we the mechanics got to down to breakfast about 30 minutes earlier than on the schedule. This will be the norm for the entire Giro for the mechanics.
Lucky for us that tomorrow’s stage will start in the same place as today’s Prologue TT. Normally we change hotels daily. So there is a time on the schedule sheet for when to have our suitcases ready to pack in the team truck. Then the truck can go with them to the next hotel for us. So, I can leave my shit scattered around for one more night.
Today is the start of the giro. I’ve been here for 3 days and 4 nights so far and I’m ready to actually start the race. It is more predictable when we are racing as it is the ONLY thing we need to concentrate on.
Since the Prologue TT was only 1.15k long and combine that fact with an evening start, that meant a morning training ride. So the guys went out at 10:00 am for a 2 hour ride followed immediately by lunch.
We prepared the TT bikes and spare bikes (using the Road/Race bikes as spares) and were packed and off to the race. Sean had scheduled a 4:00 departure for the Bus (and first wave of staff) but Luc wanted to go a little earlier to get a good spot to park. So we left for the Prologue at 3:00. So many teams had the same idea and were there much before we were. Crazy that we were there more than 3 hours before our first rider and many teams were already set up. A long night for sure.
I got the chance to go to the TT with Sean, Lorenzo, Allen, Gert, Vincent and Luc in the team bus. What a treat as I got to see how fans react to (theoretical) riders on the bus. You could see people twist their necks to see who was in the bus, but they could not as the windows were really dark.
With so much time before our first rider we got the bus parked and set up the barricades so our ridder would have an area to warm up without people milling about immediately in front of them. Having done that we all took a short walk around. First thing we saw (and went for) was a gelattaria. We attacked that with vigor as it was warm and a well deserved treat. Walking a bit further was a bit of Americana. The golden arches. Yes, we attacked the McDonalds too as it would be a long night and possibly not too much for dinner later.
The race was uneventful except for Paulo’s excellent ride earning him a solid 4th place. And more important (at least for me) was that we were car # 3 since 1st was a Panaria team rider and 2nd and 3rd were both Fassa Bartolo riders which meant we were the third highest team so we got car # 3 for tomorrow.
After Paulo finished we were instantly out of there but still did not return to the hotel till almost midnight. All for what? A silly 1.15k Prologue TT. I think we should have had a longer TT since we did the same amount of work for the TT regardless of the length. And it should start at a reasonable hour. A 4:00 Start would have mathematically meant a 9:00 return to the Hotel and we could have had a possible reasonable dinner. So it was Snack, snack, snack all day with no real dinner to speak of. It was only 1.15k long but still took the whole day to prepare for.
Giro mistake of the day. Bring a camera. I’m not a camera guy so taking photos is not always on my mind. But you can’t take them if you don’t have it with you.


Owner of and long time professional race mechanic.