Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In


Giro d'Italia

Primož Roglič not obsessing over Remco Evenepoel in Giro d’Italia showdown: ‘I want the pink jersey in Rome’

Jumbo-Visma star wants to avoid repeat of 2019 when Carapaz rode away from him and Nibali: 'Everyone only mentions me and Remco, but there are a lot of other quality riders.'

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.

Primož Roglič isn’t going to make the same mistake twice as he returns to the Giro d’Italia as one of the five-star favorites for the pink jersey.

His looming duel with Remco Evenepoel is looking eerily like a repeat of 2019, when Roglič and Vincenzo Nibali were the heavy pre-race favorites, only to see Richard Carapaz ride away from everyone.

Roglič learned some lessons from that bitter experience when he ended up third on the final podium.

“Everyone only mentions me and Remco, but as we know, there are a lot of other quality cyclists in the peloton today,” Roglič said during a press call. “In the end, it’s the little things that decide.

“You will have to be focused, but I don’t have a third favorite in mind,” Roglič said in a media call reported on RTV SLO. “I don’t think about it. The focus is on me, doing my own thing. We will see who will fight for the top spots.”

The 2023 Giro is setting up a showdown between Roglič and Evenepoel, who last battled during the 2022 Vuelta that Evenepoel won and Roglič crashed out of.

Roglič returns to the Giro for the first time since 2019 older and wiser.

Even with the pink jersey up for grabs in the opening-day time trial, Roglič knows what his end game will be.

“I want to have a pink jersey in Rome,” Roglič said. “Every day counts, but who has the pink jersey on the last day counts the most.”

Older, wiser ‘Rogla’ into the Giro

Roglič roared to victory in his season debut at Tirreno-Adriatico. (Photo: JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images)

At next weekend’s start of the season’s first grand tour, Roglič will be a very different rider than he was in 2019, when he was one of the peloton’s ascending stars on the hunt for his first grand tour victory.

The pressure is on, but Roglič says he’s at peace with his racing career.

“Challenges push you forward to be better and better. On the other hand, I can be completely relaxed,” Roglič said. “With or without Giro, my life will go on. We have made great preparations and are just calmly waiting for the start.”

Since the 2019 Giro, he’s won three straight Vuelta a España titles and finished second at the 2020 Tour de France.

After a rough and tumble 2022 that saw him crash out of both the Tour and Vuelta, the 33-year-old Roglič is putting the pink jersey at the center of his season ambitions.

“I am more relaxed, and the reason is the years,” he said. “I’m older and more relaxed, which is the most important thing.”

A hot start to 2023 will only bolster his confidence. He barnstormed to victory at Tirreno-Adriatico and then bettered Evenepoel is a game of nerves and time bonuses at the Volta a Catalunya in March.

The time-trial heavy Giro route also tips in his favor, but Roglič insists he has his eyes on the larger prize.

“Depending on the outcome of the opening stage, we will work on tactics and plans for the future,” he said, citing Filippo Ganna as the favorite to win the opening TT. “Day by day.”

Not obsessing over Remco

Roglič and Evenepoel were near-inseperable at the Volta a Catalunya and are set to headline the Giro. (Photo: JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images)

This time, instead of Nibali, it’s Evenepoel and the Belgian’s unbridled ambitions that are driving the narrative.

“Remco is also getting better and better. It will be a very interesting fight for sure, if we only look at us and everyone else who will be around us,” Roglič said.

Is he worried about the growing hype that the “corsa rosa” will be reduced into a showdown with reigning world champion Evenepoel?

Roglič says he’s not losing any sleep over the impending battle.

“Remco doesn’t need to prove to me how good and strong he is. The results speak for themselves,” Roglič said. “You have to be where you need to be, and look for your opportunities in these three weeks.”

Evenepoel and Roglič crossed paths almost daily at the top of the Teide volcano, where they both were training and sleeping at the hotel on the edge of the crater.

Roglič said they shared breakfast and exchanged pleasantries almost daily.

“My goal is to win the Giro. That remains the same,” Roglič said of his pre-Giro preparation. “Each competitor brings his own and each is a story in itself, tactics must be adjusted.

“Training, rest, training. Now I just have to survive until the Giro, where it will show that we have been working very well.”

Roglič is calm, cool, and collected as he puts the finishing touches on his preparation for the Giro d’Italia.

The Jumbo-Visma superstar returns to the Giro with some unfinished business. After seven weeks parked at the top the Teide volcano, Roglič says he’s ready for all comers.

An American in France

What’s it like to be an American cyclist living in France? Watch to get professional road cyclist Joe Dombrowski’s view.