Mountain king Bouwman observes firsthand how Giro offers challenging course

Mountain king Bouwman observes firsthand how Giro offers challenging course

“I get very excited when I look at the Giro course of the upcoming edition”, Koen Bouwman says from Milan. The most recent mountain jersey winner was present at the unveiling of the 2023 Giro d'Italia route. On the podium, the two-time stage winner discussed the new course, which appears to be quite challenging.

The cyclists are in for a demanding and challenging stage schedule with three time trials and 51,300 altitude metres. He was recognised as the Giro’s top climber with Jai Hindley and Arnaud Démare, the sprint and final classification winners. “It was great fun to experience this once”, Bouwman said.

The climber revealed on the podium that he is already anticipating the thirteenth stage in case he participates next year. “The stage has more than 5000 altitude metres. You pass the Gran San Bernardo that day. My cycling career began there in 2015 when I won a stage in the U23 category. Riding over it again would be incredible, and winning there would be a dream come true."

The rider of Team Jumbo-Visma has been at the start of the Italian grand tour in the past five editions. "In the end, the team chooses where I start, but when I consider the upcoming edition's course, I am incredibly excited. The Giro is notoriously challenging, and I predict that next year will be even more so because of the time trial kilometres and the challenging peaks. But because it will be very tough, there will also be enough days for breakaways”, Bouwman predicts.

"It will be very tough, but there will be enough days for breakaways"

Koen Bouwman

The Dutchman triumphed in two stages and the mountains classification this year. When asked if his victory on the stage to Potenza, which he achieved alongside his teammate Tom Dumoulin, was his best day on the bike, Bouwman replied confidently. “Undoubtedly one of the most beautiful. A little boy's dream is to triumph in a competitive race. I managed to do that in 2017 in the Dauphiné during my second season with the pros. It changed my objectives, and I now also desire to prevail in a grand tour. It is unforgettable if you go on to win two stages and become the first Dutchman ever to capture the Giro's mountain jersey. Even now, I must change my objectives because it won't be simple to match that. To do it once more would be a dream. Maybe in 2023, who knows?”


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