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Slovenian Trident


The shores of the Adriatic Sea are turning into a catwalk for Slovenian riders. Routes may change, circumstances may change, but in the end, it’s either Tadej Pogacar or Primoz Roglic to take home the Trident of Neptune of the Tirreno-Adriatico. Over the last five years, they have claimed two editions each, Roglic in 2019 and 2023, Pogacar in 2021 and 2022: Simon Yates’s victory in 2020, therefore, acquires even greater value.

Let there be no mistake, we are obviously dealing with two greats of this sport, probably the strongest stage race riders of the last 10 years. Still, seeing the Slovenian flag waving over the last three editions of the Corsa dei Due Mari is nothing short of impressive. It may be the coming of spring, it may be the sea air, it may be that the Adriatic is also a Slovenian sea, it may be whatever, but the Tirreno-Adriatico is now a Slovenian matter. And just for the record, on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, at the Paris-Nice, Pogacar has just won three stages, along with the whole race. Roglic, between Tirreno and Adriatic, did not intend to be outdone, and took home the second Trident of his career.

If Pogacar is unquestionably the man of the moment, because he is not even 25 years old and still has his whole career ahead of him, Roglic is unfortunately approaching the last part of his cycling adventure. He is close to 34 after all, and in this cycling that goes a thousand miles an hour, with young and hungry talents kicking for space, one risks being soon forgotten. But Primoz is one of a kind, and even after a difficult 2022 and a winter spent licking his wounds (shoulder operation and consequent 3-month stop), he came back as fresh as a daisy and more motivated than ever. Little matter that he hadn’t raced for six months, he hit the jackpot right away, and not just once: in one week he took four victories, three stage wins at Tortoreto, Sarnano Sassotetto and Osimo, and the overall.

This 2023, therefore, could once again be tinged in strong Slovenian colours. The Milano-Sanremo (which, by the way, was won by another Slovenian, Matej Mohoric, back in 2022) is coming up on Saturday. This is obviously one of Tadej Pogacar’s great seasonal goals. We then have the Giro d’Italia in May, which will be Primoz Roglic’s hunting ground.

The feeling is that the Slovenian party has only just begun, but the first seal has already arrived: the King of the Two Seas is once again that boy who grew up on skis and snow, Primoz.

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