The Giro is over. We laughed. We cried. We made fun of Pellizotti's hair. Some of us even fell in love... with Daniele Bennati, although supposedly he has the hots for a podium girl that some others probably fell in love with. I guess if it didn't end in a homicidal love triangle, this wouldn't be Italy, right?
Anyway, the next month is all about transitioning to the Tour. Apart from the national championships of various countries, we have the Dauphine Libere and Tour de Suisse, two rather unabashed Tour de France tuneups. I don't get too exercised about either race, and will be pacing myself for July... but then, there will be intrigue, and it's still bike racing. So we'll certainly be on the job. I also have several book reviews in the pipeline for this month, including a pair of Tour de France books and some less topical, but no less interesting, stuff.
May was a great month for the site. The biggest news was of course the redesign, which IMHO has been nothing but good news. May was also our second-biggest traffic total after last year's Tour... a standard we easily could have topped with a juicy scandal. On second thought, no thanks. But of course the biggest news was on the road, where the Giro put on an amazing show. I've beaten the storyline on the competition to death already, but I do want to give some last props to the organizers. This was a race for the fans, chock-a-bloc with beauty, majesty, and stages to drive the imagination. From the Valle dei Templii (Greek ruins in Agrigento) to the craggy dolomite peaks, with lots of seashore on the way, the Giro reminds us that a race can be a visual feast if you design it right.
Of course, the flipside of all those great stages is the number of transfers, and us fans can afford to let the organizers know that we would give up some of the scenery next time for a less hectic atmosphere behind-the-scenes. After all, what matters most is the action, something the riders have well in hand. Of all the climbing stages, I probably would have expected the least out of the Presolana-Monte Pora stage, and yet that's where we had the most fun. Well, except for the Plan de Corones, where the spectacular was always on the menu.
Special thanks to all of you who contributed so much to the atmosphere here. To single out a few, Monty and Gavia provided us with real-time translations of the post-race scene, something even the biggest sites don't provide. And of course Tifosa took the real hardship post, going to Italy and blogging on site. Seriously though... I write stuff to start the conversation here, and because I enjoy writing, but whether it adds value is in the eyes of the beholder. Blogging from a race we all would like to attend, with pictures of the scene? That adds value, hands down. Bravissimo a tutti!