Giro chief mum on Belfast start

2013-01-14 22:50

Milan - Giro d'Italia chief Michele Acquarone says it's too soon to say whether the 2014 edition of the race will start in Belfast.

French newspaper L'Equipe reported last week that the 2014 Giro will start in the Northern Irish capital before crossing over into Ireland and heading into Dublin, but Acquarone on Monday refused to say whether that was the case.

"We can't say at the moment, otherwise we would have already announced it," Acquarone told The Associated Press at the presentation of the new Giro jerseys - which have been designed by Paul Smith. "I don't know if it will be the same this year, but in previous years we have always announced it at the end of the Giro."

Acquarone, general director of Giro organiser RCS Sport, went on to compare the reports to the novel and film "Life of Pi."

"In the film people don't believe Pi when he tells them he was in a boat for so long with a tiger and so he tells them another story, that there was no tiger and he was travelling with an evil person. He asks them to make up their own mind, which story they prefer,"Acquarone said. "So I say to people, what story would you prefer? Would you prefer a start in Belfast or an ordinary start in Italy? I always prefer the more dangerous, more exciting option."

The Giro's first start outside Italy was in 1965 when it departed from San Marino. It started off in Denmark in 2012.

This year's Giro begins in Naples.

The 2014 Tour de France, which takes place soon after the end of the Giro, will depart from Leeds, England.