A birthday gift… to earn

30 january 2016
Categories: Personality

The goal of a second Giro d'Italia red jersey is fixed in my mind. Meantime, at the jerseys' presentation I met...

Casually, this year the Giro d’Italia presented the new jerseys on January 28th – that is two days earlier than my 27th birthday. I had the pleasure to be invited to the official presentation, hence having the opportunity to see the… present that I am looking to give to myself in a few months.

I want another red jersey, that’s no secret. Last year, I came out on top of a tough battle, and it was one of the biggest satisfactions in my career. In 2016, I am dreaming of another one, and possibly one or more stages: with the start of this season, I feel more confident in our chances. Trek-Segafredo’s trust, as well as the good feeling with the teammates – starting with Boy Van Poppel – make a big difference, and I hope they will make it for me, at the Giro d’Italia and beyond.

At the Giro d’Italia jersey’s presentation I also found motorbike rider Marco Melandri, whom I had met a couple of times over the last few months. Now, everybody knows I am a big moto fan, but did you know that my favorite rider was Marco Melandri himself? I remember myself watching his race on TV since the 125 series, shouting and cheering in his Moto GP duels against Valentino Rossi.

Now he has grown into a cycling fan too, and I have made my own path as a professional sportsman. Honestly, though, it still makes quite an impression when I see that idol of my childhood just clicked ‘like’  on my Instagram photos!