The (Other) Winners of the 2024 Giro d’Italia

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The (Other) Winners of the Giro d’ItaliaTim de Waele - Getty Images

The 107th Giro d’Italia wrapped up on Sunday in Rome with Slovenia’s Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) taking home the maglia rosa (“pink jersey”) as the overall winner of the Italian grand tour.

Pogačar started the final week with a sizable lead: 6:41 ahead of Great Britain’s Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) and 6:56 ahead of Colombia’s Daniel Martínez (BORA-hansgrohe). But the Slovenian left nothing to chance, winning Stages 16 and 20 to extend his lead even further.

By the time the dust had settled, the two-time Tour de France champion had won the General Classification by almost 10 minutes. Martínez ended the race in second-place overall, 9:56 behind Pogačar; and Thomas, who finished second overall in last year’s Giro, ended the race in third, 10:24 behind the Slovenian. To put things into perspective, Pogačar’s winning margin was the largest since 1965.

Pogačar and his UAE Team Emirates squad dominated the race from start to finish–perhaps even more emphatically than most expected. The Slovenian wore the maglia rosa for 20 days, falling one day short of taking the Giro’s first wire-to-wire victory since 1990. He won six stages, the most by anyone since Alessandro Petacchi won nine sprint stages in 2004 and the most ever by an overall winner. Even Belgian legend Eddy Merckx–who won the race five times–never won more than five stages in a single Giro. And with five of his six stage wins coming in the mountains, it comes as no surprise that Pogačar also won the maglia azzurra (“blue jersey”) as the Giro’s King of the Mountains.

Simply put: this was the greatest Giro performance by a single rider in the modern era– and maybe ever. The 25-year-old was far and away the best rider in this year’s race, and there was nothing anyone could do to stop him.

Now the Slovenian has his sights set on the Tour de France, where he will most likely enter the race as the top contender. His goal in winning a third Tour de France is to become the first rider since 1998 to win the Giro and the Tour in the same season. And after his Giro performance–and given the fact that the Tour’s two-time defending champion, Denmark’s Jonas Vingegaard (Visma-Lease a Bike), might not be healthy enough to start the Tour–we’re not betting against him.

Here’s a look at some of the other “ winners” from the 107th Giro d’Italia:

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Tim de Waele - Getty Images

Daniel Martínez (BORA-hansgrohe)

Thanks to Pogačar, the Giro quickly became a race for second, and credit goes to Martínez for scoring his first podium finish in a grand tour. The Colombian–who came to BORA from INEOS during the off-season–rode a near-flawless race after climbing into the top-3 on Stage 2 and then never leaving it.

BORA has gone all-in the Tour de France after signing Slovenia’s Primož Roglič away from Visma during the off-season, and for now Martínez will race the Tour to support the Slovenian. But he’s five years younger than Roglič, and will benefit from the experience he gained after leading the team all by himself at this year’s Giro. This won’t be the only grand tour podium finish of his career.

Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers)

Thomas–who turned 38 on Saturday–finished second to Roglič last year after losing the maglia rosa in a mountain time trial on the penultimate day. Like Martínez, the Welshman raced into the top-3 on the General Classification on Stage 2 and then never left it; his dogfight with the Colombian was one of the race’s more interesting storylines once Pogačar had pulled away from the field.

A podium finish in a grand tour is a career achievement at any age, but at 38, it’s really something special. Then again, for Thomas–who’s probably the most consistent stage racer in the sport–it’s just another day at the office.

Thomas is retiring at the end of the season, but first he’s joining Pogačar and Martínez at the Tour de France, a race he won back in 2018. He’s not expected to lead the team, though. Instead he’ll join Spain’s Carlos Rodriguez and Colombia’s Egan Bernal as some sort of three-headed GC-monster that will attempt to use its strength and experience to try and upset the Tour’s more favored contenders.

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LUCA BETTINI - Getty Images

Jonathan Milan (Lidl-Trek)

For the second year in a row, Italy’s Jonathan Milan (Lidl-Trek) won the maglia ciclamino (“cyclamen jersey”) as the winner of the Giro’s Points Classification. While not quite as impressive as Pogačar, the 23-year-old won four stages–and finished second in four others–to run away with the competition for the second year in a row.

We’re not sure if the statuesque Italian (he’s about 6’3”) will be riding the Tour de France this summer. But if he does, he could give Belgium’s Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck)–who won four stages and the Points Classification in last year’s Tour–a run for his money.

Antonio Tiberi (Bahrain-Victorious)

Prior to this year’s Giro d’Italia, Tiberi was known more for something he did off the bike–and it wasn’t very good. In early 2023, the Italian killed his neighbor’s cat with an air rifle and was subsequently fired by Trek-Segafredo, the team he was riding for at the time. After some time passed, Bahrain-Victorious signed the then-21-year-old and gave him a chance to resume his career and re-shape his image.

Well, in finishing fifth overall and taking home the maglia bianca (“white jersey”) as the Giro’s Best Young Rider, Tiberi has put himself squarely on the radar of his nation’s rabid fans. A gifted climber, he’s possesses two additional traits that might make him a future Giro champion: he’s a talented time trialist–he finished sixth in both ITTs in this year’s race; and he’s got a bit of swagger–Pogačar complimented Tiberi for being the only one willing to attack the Slovenian during the first week.

The 22-year-old is heading straight to France’s Critérium du Dauphiné–which starts this weekend–where he’ll see if he has enough form left to challenge some of the Tour’s top pre-race contenders. Then he’ll rest before tackling the Vuelta a España in late-August. If everything goes as planned, Tiberi will enter next year’s Giro as a top contender, a rider who could possibly win the host nation its first maglia rosa since 2016.

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Dario Belingheri - Getty Images

Italian Tifosi

Italian cycling tifosi or “fans” haven’t had much to cheer about in the past few years, as the nation’s been experiencing a bit of a dry spell when it comes to producing riders capable of winning grand tours like the Giro d’Italia or Monuments like Milan-San Remo. But if this year’s Giro is any indication, that could be changing soon.

Obviously, Milan–a future world class sprinter–and Tiberi–a potential pink jersey contender–lead the way, but Italians also loved the gutsy ride from Giulio Pellizzari, a 20-year-old who rides for the small VF Group-Bardiani CSF-Faizanè team, one of a few squads to receive wild card invitations to this year’s race.

The youngest rider in the race, Pellizzari attacked relentlessly in the mountains, coming close to winning a stage on more than one occasion and even impressing Pogačar, who gifted the Italian his sunglasses and his maglia rosa after the Slovenian defeated the Italian to win Stage 16.

He ended the race as the runner-up in the Giro’s King of the Mountains competition, which meant he earned the right to wear the maglia azzurra into Rome–because Pogačar couldn’t wear two leaders’ jerseys at once. And even better, Pellizzari’s performance caught the eye of several WorldTour squads, with rumors swirling as to which team will sign the talented young climber to a big contract this off-season.

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Dario Belingheri - Getty Images

Soudal-Quick Step

The Belgian WorldTour squad had a terrible spring, coming up short in cobbled Classics like the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix, events that the team once dominated. To make matters worse, the team’s marquee rider, Remco Evenepoel, crashed out of the Tour of the Basque Country, which prevented the Belgian superstar from going for a third-straight win in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, a victory that would have salvaged the team’s spring campaign.

But the team rebounded at the Giro, winning four stages. Belgium’s Tim Merlier led the way with three sprint victories–including the final stage into Rome.

But Julian Alaphilippe’s Stage 12 victory was easily the team’s most popular victory. The one-time “galactico” has had a rough couple of seasons and has since fallen out with his team’s outspoken General Manager, Patrick Lefevere. But after spending three weeks as one of the Giro’s most aggressive riders, Alaphilippe seems to have regained the swashbuckling spirit that won the French puncheur back-to-back world championships in 2020 and 2021.

Alaphilippe wasn’t slated to ride the Tour de France, but there are rumors that his Giro performance might help him make the team. And if it didn’t, it at least helped his asking price: with his contract set to expire at the end of the season, there are several French teams looking to sign him.

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Dario Belingheri - Getty Images


Colnago bicycles have been ridden by some of cycling’s most famous champions. But the iconic Italian brand hasn’t stood on the top step of the Giro’s podium since Russia’s Denis Menchov (Rabobank) won the race back in 2009. Well, that’s all changed thanks to Pogačar, who ended the brand’s 15-year Giro drought with his victory.

The company might want to sign Pogačar to a lifetime contract, as the Slovenian seems to be a lucky talisman for the legendary brand. His 2020 Tour de France victory was Colnago’s first–a bit of a surprise for a company that once supplied bikes to Merckx. Then again, maybe it’s time to get used to Pogačar doing things that even Merckx–who’s widely considered to be the greatest men’s cyclist of all time–could not.

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