1973 Giro d'Italia

1973 Giro d'Italia
Race details
Dates 18 May – 9 June
Stages 20 + Prologue
Distance 3,801 km (2,362 mi)
Winning time 106h 54' 41"
Winner  Eddy Merckx (BEL) (Molteni)
Second  Felice Gimondi (ITA) (Bianchi)
Third  Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) (Jolly Ceramica)

Points  Eddy Merckx (BEL) (Molteni)
Mountains  José Manuel Fuente (ESP) (KAS)
Combination  Eddy Merckx (BEL) (Molteni)
Team Points Molteni

The 1973 Giro d'Italia was the 57th running of the Giro d'Italia, one of cycling's Grand Tours races. The Giro started in Verviers, Belgium, on 18 May, with a 5.2 km (3.2 mi) prologue and concluded with a 197 km (122 mi) mass-start stage, on 9 June. A total of 140 riders from fourteen teams entered the 20-stage race, that was won by Belgian Eddy Merckx of the Molteni team. The second and third places were taken by Italians Felice Gimondi and Giovanni Battaglin, respectively.[1][2]

In addition to the general classification, Merckx won the points classification. Amongst the other classifications that the race awarded, José Manuel Fuente of KAS won the mountains classification. Molteni finished as the winners of the team points classification.


A total of fourteen teams were invited to participate in the 1973 Giro d'Italia. Each team sent a squad of ten riders, which meant that the race started with a peloton of 140 cyclists.[3] From the riders that began this edition, 113 made it to the finish on the Trieste.[3]

The teams entering the race were:

  • Ovest Rokado
  • Sammontana
  • Scic
  • Zonca

Stage results

Stage characteristics and winners[3]
Stage Date Course Distance Type Winner
P 18 May Verviers (Belgium) 5.2 km (3.2 mi) Two-man Team Time Trial[N 1]  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
 Roger Swerts (BEL)
1 19 May Verviers (Belgium) to Cologne (Germany) 137 km (85 mi) Plain stage  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
2 20 May Cologne (Germany) to Luxembourg (Luxembourg) 227 km (141 mi) Plain stage  Roger de Vlaeminck (BEL)
3 21 May Luxembourg (Luxembourg) to Strasbourg (France) 239 km (149 mi) Plain stage  Gustave Van Roosbroeck (BEL)
4 22 May Geneva (Switzerland) to Aosta 163 km (101 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
23 May Rest day
5 24 May St. Vincent to Milan 173 km (107 mi) Plain stage  Gerben Karstens (NED)
6 25 May Milan to Iseo 144 km (89 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Gianni Motta (ITA)
7 26 May Iseo to Lido delle Nazioni 248 km (154 mi) Plain stage  Rik van Linden (BEL)
8 27 May Lido delle Nazioni to Monte Carpegna 156 km (97 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
9 28 May Carpegna to Alba Adriatica 243 km (151 mi) Plain stage  Patrick Sercu (BEL)
10 29 May Alba Adriatica to Lanciano 174 km (108 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
11 30 May Lanciano to Benevento 230 km (143 mi) Plain stage  Roger de Vlaeminck (BEL)
12 31 May Benevento to Fiuggi 236 km (147 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Tullio Rossi (ITA)
13 1 June Fiuggi to Bolsena 215 km (134 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Roger de Vlaeminck (BEL)
14 2 June Bolsena to Florence 202 km (126 mi) Plain stage  Francesco Moser (ITA)
15 3 June Florence to Forte dei Marmi 150 km (93 mi) Plain stage  Martín Emilio Rodríguez (COL)
4 June Rest day
16 5 June Forte dei Marmi to Forte dei Marmi 37 km (23 mi) Individual Time Trial  Felice Gimondi (ITA)
17 6 June Forte dei Marmi to Verona 244 km (152 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Rik Van Linden (BEL)
18 7 June Verona to Andalo 173 km (107 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
19 8 June Andalo to Auronzo di Cadore 208 km (129 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  José Manuel Fuente (ESP)
20 9 June Auronzo di Cadore to Trieste 197 km (122 mi) Stage with mountain(s)  Marino Basso (ITA)
Total 3,801 km (2,362 mi)

Classification leadership

A picture of a mountain.
The Passo di Giau was the Cima Coppi for the 1973 running of the Giro d'Italia.

Two different jerseys were worn during the 1973 Giro d'Italia. The leader of the general classification – calculated by adding the stage finish times of each rider, and allowing time bonuses for the first three finishers on mass-start stages – wore a pink jersey. This classification is the most important of the race, and its winner is considered as the winner of the Giro.[4]

For the points classification, which awarded a purple (or cyclamen) jersey to its leader, cyclists were given points for finishing a stage in the top 15; additional points could also be won in intermediate sprints. No jersey was awarded for the mountains classification leader. In this ranking, points were won by reaching the summit of a climb ahead of other cyclists. Each climb was ranked as either first, second or third category, with more points available for higher category climbs. The Cima Coppi, the race's highest point of elevation, awarded more points than the other first category climbs.[4] The Cima Coppi for this Giro was the Passo di Giau. The first rider to cross the Passo di Giau was Spanish rider José Manuel Fuente.

Although no jersey was awarded, there was also one classification for the teams, in which the awarded points to each team based off their riding's finishing position in every stage; the leading team was the one with the most points.[4]

The rows in the following table correspond to the jerseys awarded after that stage was run.

Classification leadership by stage
Stage Winner General classification
Points classification
Mountains classification
Team classification
P Eddy Merckx & Roger Swerts Eddy Merckx ? not awarded not awarded
1 Eddy Merckx ?
2 Roger De Vlaeminck
3 Gustave Van Roosbroeck
4 Eddy Merckx José Manuel Fuente
5 Gerben Karstens
6 Gianni Motta Eddy Merckx
7 Rik Van Linden
8 Eddy Merckx
9 Patrick Sercu
10 Eddy Merckx
11 Roger De Vlaeminck
12 Tullio Rossi
13 Roger De Vlaeminck
14 Francesco Moser
15 Martín Emilio Rodríguez
16 Felice Gimondi
17 Rik Van Linden
18 Eddy Merckx
19 José Manuel Fuente José Manuel Fuente
20 Marino Basso
Final Eddy Merckx Eddy Merckx José Manuel Fuente Molteni

Final standings

  Pink jersey   Denotes the winner of the General classification   Green jersey   Denotes the winner of the Mountains classification
  Purple jersey   Denotes the winner of the Points classification

General classification

Final general classification (1–10)[2][3][5][6]
Rank Name Team Time
1  Eddy Merckx (BEL) Pink jersey Purple jersey Molteni 106h 54' 41"
2  Felice Gimondi (ITA) Bianchi + 7' 42"
3  Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) Jolly Ceramica + 10' 20"
4  José Pesarrodona (ESP) KAS + 15' 51"
5  Santiago Lazcano (ESP) KAS + 19' 11"
6  Wladimiro Panizza (ITA) G.B.C. + 19' 45"
7  Ole Ritter (DEN) Bianchi + 24' 24"
8  José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Green jersey KAS + 26' 06"
9  Francisco Galdós (ESP) KAS + 26' 35"
10  Gianni Motta (ITA) Zonca + 26' 49"

Points classification

Final points classification (1–5)[3][5][6]
Rider Team Points
1  Eddy Merckx (BEL) Purple jersey Pink jersey Molteni 237
2  Roger de Vlaeminck (BEL) Brooklyn 216
3  Felice Gimondi (ITA) Bianchi 146
4  Rik van Linden (BEL) Ovest Rokado 141
5  Gerben Karstens (NED) Ovest Rokado 132

Mountains classification

Final mountains classification (1–10)[2][3][5][6]
Rider Team Points
1  José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Green jersey KAS 550
2  Eddy Merckx (BEL) Pink jersey Purple jersey Molteni 510
3  Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) Jolly Ceramica 180
4  Felice Gimondi (ITA) Bianchi 110
5  Lino Farisato (ITA) Scic 100
6  Wladimiro Panizza (ITA) G.B.C. 70
 Ole Ritter (DEN) Bianchi
8  Italo Zilioli (ITA) Dreher 30
 Ottavio Crepaldi (ITA) Zonca
 Santiago Lazcano (ESP) KAS

Combination classification

Final Combination classification (1–4)[3][5]
Rider Team Points
1  Eddy Merckx (BEL) Pink jersey Purple jersey Molteni 4
2  Felice Gimondi (ITA) Bianchi 9
3  Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) Jollj Ceramica 17
4  José Manuel Fuente (ESP) Green jersey KAS 18

Intermediate sprints classification

Final intermediate sprints classification (1–5)[5][6]
Rider Team Points
1  Domingo Perurena (ESP) KAS 170
2  Ercole Gualazzini (ITA) Bianchi 110
3  Gianni Motta (ITA) Zonca 70
4  Joseph Bruyère (BEL) Molteni 60
5  Enrico Paolini (ITA) Scic 40
 Piero Dallai (ITA) Magniflex

Neo-professional classification

Final neo-professional classification (1–5)[2][6]
Rider Team Time
1  Giovanni Battaglin (ITA) Jolly Ceramica 107h 05' 01"
2  Francesco Moser (ITA) Filotex + 28' 22"
3  Hennie Kuiper (NED) Rokado + 28' 30"
4  Walter Riccomi (ITA) Sammontana + 1h 01' 34"
5  Luciano Conati (ITA) Scic + 1h 06' 27"

Team classification

Final team classification (1–5)[3][6]
Team Points
1 Molteni 7,731
2 Bianchi 4,434
3 Brooklyn 4,114
4 Rokado 3,534
5 KAS 3,534


The race is documented in Jørgen Leth's 1973 film Stars and Watercarriers (Stjernerne og Vandbærerne).


  1. The prologue for the 1973 Giro d'Italia was not a typical prologue as it was a two-man team time trial, not the normal individual time trial. The stage results were used to just award the first leaders jerseys of the race. The results from the stage did not count towards the general classification.[3]
  1. "Merckx, <<Maglia Rosa>> De Principio A Fin" [Merckx, <<Pink Jersey>> From Beginning to End] (PDF) (in Spanish). El Mundo Deportivo. 10 June 1973. p. 19. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 March 2015. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Gianni Pignata (10 June 1973). "Giro-record per Merckx, sempre in rosa" [Lap-record for Merckx, always in pink] (PDF). La Stampa (in Italian). Editrice La Stampa. p. 22. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Bill and Carol McGann. "1973 Giro d'Italia". Bike Race Info. Dog Ear Publishing. Archived from the original on 2 January 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2012.
  4. 1 2 3 Laura Weislo (13 May 2008). "Giro d'Italia classifications demystified". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. Archived from the original on 17 June 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2013.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 "Clasificaciones oficiales" [Official classifications] (PDF) (in Spanish). El Mundo Deportivo. 10 June 1973. p. 19. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 March 2015. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "I primi venti del 1973" [The first twenty of 1973] (PDF). l'Unità (in Italian). PCI. 9 June 1974. p. 9. Archived (PDF) from the original on 13 March 2015. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
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