The Corsa Rosa doubles. From the roads of Belpaese it moves into a virtual world accessible with every device – an innovative space where every user can become a protagonist.

The Maglia Bianca holder, as white as the surrounding snow. The determined gaze of someone who has nothing to lose. Legs that hammer on the pedals, immune to suffering. On the morning of 25 May 2018, Chris Froome knows he has only one chance: winning the stage. And so he does, dashing into a desperate and lonely breakaway with 80 kilometres to go, on a mountain road where tarmac gives way to gravel. He climbs up the Colle delle Finestre – Cima Coppi in that edition of the Giro – then the route heads to Sestriere and the Jafferau climb. He triumphs surrounded by the incredulous crowds and conquers the Maglia Rosa, leaving contender Simon Yates – who was wearing it just hours before – numb.

Even told like that, this feat gives you the shivers, doesn’t it? But imagine what it would feel like to relive it in an immersive environment tailor-made for enthusiasts? You will soon find out. Because from today, great cycling doubles up. There is real cycling, in flesh and blood and sweat, on the roads of the 106th edition of the Corsa Rosa, and there is the ultra-virtual cycling of the Metagiro: the new digital hub of the Giro d’Italia, a virtual space to experience the magic of Italy’s most important cycling competition in a new and engaging way. The initiative – an absolute debut for the great road cycling races – is the result of a partnership with VVITA, the most important Italian provider of Web3 technology. And it is not destined to end once the 21 days of the Corsa Rosa are over. Metagiro will remain open and constantly evolving. As the weeks go by, more and more functions and subject areas will be unlocked, turning it into an increasingly interactive space.

But let us start at the beginning. The Metagiro setting is already a jolting emotion. A typical Italian village perched atop a hill, with the bell tower and the stone-paved square that if one hits the brakes the whole group hit the road. But here, past and future, tradition and innovation coexist wonderfully. As of today, in fact, it is possible to explore not only the race stages, but also the digital animation of the Trofeo Senza Fine – which awards the Giro d’Italia final winner – or of the digital jerseys, which are a must. We will be back soon.

As resources expand, we will increasingly enter the metaverse. And here the experiences to be lived first-hand will multiply. You will be able to create a custom avatar, enter the Hall of Fame with the great cycling champions who have made history in the Corsa Rosa, acquire new benefits through gamification elements. As we said, there will also be the possibility to relive the events that have marked the history of Giro d’Italia. Have you already thought about which ones you would like to relive? Let’s give it a guess.

On 22 May 2021, Lorenzo Fortunato is 25 years old and has not won a single major victory in his career. But his fate is about to shift. In the stage from Cittadella to Monte Zoncolan, he pulls away with 10 other riders, stays put for a while, then attacks alone. “How dare he?”, wonder the other breakaway riders. He responds by pedalling relentlessly. He closes on Jan Tratnik, the leading escapee, climbs the final gruelling 12-kilometre ascent and crosses the finish line shrouded in mist. It is his consecration. Yet another unforgettable flashback: the iconic Tre Cime di Lavaredo stage in the heart of the Dolomites in 2013. Three degrees below zero, 600 metres of elevation gain and a climb with sections up to 18 per cent slope. All this is topped off with heavy snowfall. At three kilometres remaining, Vincenzo Nibali darts across what looks like a white field. Fabio Duarte tries to chase him but has to settle for second place. The Maglia Rosa is grabbed by the Italian, who also takes the overall victory.

And if you too, driven by the sacred fire of cycling, would like the Maglia Rosa, you will be satisfied. Simply purchase one of the Giro d’Italia collectables – already available in VVITA-collections and soon on Metagiro also – to receive one of the 4 Giro d’Italia digital jerseys: the iconic Rosa for the luckiest ones, or the Blue, Cyclamen, White jerseys, given out by random association. Each jersey always corresponds to actual benefits that take you from the Metaverse virtual world to the Giro d’Italia real world. A few examples? Subscriptions to the Gazzetta dello Sport, the actual Maglia Rosa and the other classification jerseys (including those autographed at the Trofeo Senza Fine auction that will open at the end of the Giro) as well as the chance to follow the riders live onboard a team car during the final stage in Rome.