The Story of the Giro d'Italia
A Year-by-Year History of the Tour of Italy, Volume One: 1909 - 1970
By Bill & Carol McGann
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Suggested print version retail price: $18.95
Kindle ebook: $5.95
6 x 9 paperback, 308 pages
Publisher: McGann Publishing
Podium Cafe has an extended review of The Story of the Giro d'Italia.
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Advance word about The Story of the Giro d'Italia:
"Bill and Carol McGann had set a high standard with their compelling and authoritative Story of the Tour de France, and now they follow up with Le Tour’s inspired Italian offspring in The Story of the Giro d’Italia. In this Volume I covering the Giro’s debut in 1909 through 1970, this work of patient research, passionate writing, and insightful analysis lays out the struggles, battles, and rivalries in detail and sweep that have made Italy’s grand tour endure. And the American audience can read about Joseph Magnani―a native of LaSalle, Illinois―who rode in the 1946 Giro on the Olmo team and quietly made history as the first U.S. rider to compete in one of the grand tours in the era of dusty roads against Italy’s heroes Bartali and Coppi." —Peter Joffre Nye, author of The Six-Day Bicycle Races: America's Jazz Age Sport and Hearts of Lions. Mr. Nye is also a trustee of the US Bicycle Hall of Fame.
About the book: The Giro d'Italia is one of the world's most important and popular bicycle races, yet there is almost no information in English about this magical Italian race's rich past. With The Story of the Giro d'Italia, the fabulous history of Italy's national tour is at last available. Volume One takes the story of the Giro from its origin as a desperate promotional gamble by a nearly broke newspaper to Eddy Merckx's convincing 1970 victory.
The great rivalry between Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali is well known, mostly because of their adventures in the Tour de France. But for much of bike racing’s history the Alps have been a high wall and Italian sponsors preferred to keep their racers at home where they could earn valuable publicity. Because of this, there is a whole world of great athletes who are virtually unknown to the non-Italian cycling fan. How about Giovanni Valetti? In 1939 Valetti beat Bartali when Gino was at the very peak of his powers. Has anyone heard of Giuseppe Enrici, the Giro winner who was born in Pittsburgh? Alfonsina Strada was the only woman who entered (and unofficially finished) a Grand Tour. And there was Giordano Cottur, who won a Giro stage in Trieste while guns blazed.
Clearly, this is a story that had to be told and it's all in The Story of the Giro d'Italia.
Bill and Carol McGann have had their lives inextricably tied up with bicycles about as long as they can remember. Their first date was a bike ride. Bill, formerly a Category 1 racer, has been a contributor to several cycling magazines and is widely acknowledged as an expert on road bikes and cycling history. Since his father gave him a small 1-speed English lightweight bicycle when he was 5 years old, Bill has been in love with everything about bikes. Carol, a former college biology instructor is also an accomplished rider, having cycle-toured extensively. Today they own McGann Publishing, LLC, publishing and writing books about cycling history.
Here's a bigger version of the cover art. The photo is from the 1951 Giro. That's Fausto Coppi and Louison Bobet in front with Ferdy Kübler on Coppi's wheel.