Giro d’Italia organisers RCS Sport and Velon, the joint venture set up by a number of WorldTour teams last year, have reached an agreement for on-bike cameras to be used during the 98th edition of the race, which starts on the Ligurian coast this Saturday.
Footage will be recorded during eight stages of the Italian Grand Tour – the opening team time trial to San Remo, Stage 2, which is expected to finish in a sprint in Genoa, Stages 4, 9, 12 and 15, all classified as medium mountain stages, and Stages 16, featuring the Mortirolo, and 20, when the riders tackle the Colle delle Finestre.
As well as being used during TV coverage of the race, footage will also appear on the Giro’s own website as well as those of teams and media outlets – so look out for some videos from the thick of the action here on road.cc.
Race director Mauro Vegni said: “It has always been important for us to bring fans close to the action and new technologies are making it possible to bring them into the peloton and show the Giro d’Italia, the hardest race in the world's most beautiful place, in a whole new perspective to fans all around the world.”
Velon was officially launched in November last year by 11 WorldTour teams but had already been involved in the UCI’s trial of on-bike cameras during the 2014 season.
One of its aims was to create stable, non-sponsorship revenue streams for teams, and it is understood they will benefit financially from the RCS deal.
Its members are: BMC Racing, Etixx-Quick-Step, Lampre-Merida, Lotto Soudal, Orica GreenEdge, Cannondale-Garmin, Giant-Alpecin, Lotto NL-Jumbo, Team Sky, Tinkoff-Saxo and Trek Factory Racing.
Velon’s CEO, Graham Bartlett, said: “RCS Sport have really got behind this project and we’re delighted to work with them on such an important race. The eight stages chosen will give a great insight into what it takes to win both stages and jerseys in a Grand Tour and we can’t wait to see the results.”
Here's some on-board footage posted on Velon's YouTube channel of last month's Tour of Flanders.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.