Former Giro d’Italia winners pay tribute at Gimondi’s final farewell

Felice Gimondi was one of Italy’s cycling greats and his funeral near Bergamo was attended by a host of Giro d’Italia winners on Tuesday.

Italy bid a final farewell to five-time Grand Tour winner Felice Gimondi on Tuesday as his funeral took place in Paladina, near Bergamo.

Gimondi died on Friday at the age of 76. He enjoyed a glittering career that included winning the Tour de France in 1965 in his first year as a professional.

He also claimed the general classification title three times at his home Grand Tour, the Giro d’Italia, and once at the Vuelta a Espana.

Just seven cyclists have won all three events and Gimondi became the second to do so after Jacques Anquetil.

Local media estimated around 2,000 mourners travelled to pay tribute to Gimondi, with some arriving on bicycles.

The funeral was broadcast live on television in Italy and attended by several of Gimondi’s peers, according to the newspaper L’Eco di Bergamo, including fellow former Giro winners Franco Balmamion and Gianni Motta.

Paolo Savoldelli, who won the Giro in 2002 and 2005, was also among the mourners, as was 1984 Giro champion Francesco Moser and Giuseppe Saronni, who took the title in 1979 and 1983.

Pastor Monsignor Mansueto Callioni told mourners, according to Gazzetta Dello Sport: “We need to remember to thank him for his victories that instilled courage and pride. [And] for his defeats. He taught us to always fight because in life you can’t always win.”