“Not even in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine that our boys would ever be as good as Pogačar and Roglič are now. Never,” says fan Sandi, who is one of the crowd of Slovenians at the cycling fan festival in Sveti Višarje.
“Mala Planica” – that’s the Slovenian cycling ace Primož Roglič said that he wants to see today’s brutal mountain time trial on Svete Visar, which will give the winner of the 106th Tour of Italy. Due to the proximity of the Slovenian border, fans have been flocking to the track from various directions since morning – of course, most of them are those with Slovenian flags.
In Višarje, where at the peak of the season so far a maximum of five thousand visitors have been counted, today 15,000 people are expected. The weather also helps the visitors, as it is sunny but quite cold, so most of them wear long sleeves. Luka from Škofja Loka came to Svete Višare, which is 1,766 meters high, with a friend on foot. “For two hours, the path continues uphill, nothing is flat. The poisons left the body. I have never walked anywhere as steeply as today. We will encourage everyone, but especially Roglič,” he said to Val 202.
There are already a lot of Slovenian tricolors in the pilgrimage center, and there are also some Spanish and Belgian ones. There are already close to 1,000 people at the top, and there are still many hikers panting down the slope.
Pink color and Slovenian flags
In the valley, in Trbiž and its surroundings, everything is dressed in pink, all accommodations are occupied. “I’ve followed cycling before, when Valjavec, Koren, Brajkovič were riding, but mostly the Tour. This is the first time I’m on the route of a big race. The scenery is very beautiful, everything is very interesting,” said Sandi from Ljubljana for Val 202, and his son Rok added: “Soupsr is, can’t wait for it to start. Both my father and I are equally ardent fans.”
Earlier, another fan said: “Our preparations took a month, because we knew that Primož would definitely be at the top. We just waited for the Italians to tell us how everything would be organized. We went early in the morning. The parking lots are well marked. We’ll go to the top on foot otherwise , and of course equipped with all the props to give all the support to Primož – victory is ours.”
Gregor from Trebnje told Val 202 that he and his friends decided to watch the first week of the Race around Italy live, “because they expect the success of Primož“. They intend to settle in Ovčja vas, where two large screens reign, according to him, there will also be a lot of events there.”I hope that Primož has enough in him to know that he can win.” the fan added.
The buses that go to the “crime scene” are extremely full. Many will go to the top on foot along the pilgrimage route, because three thousand tickets for the cable car to Višarje were sold out in one day. Due to the narrow road, access for spectators will be limited during the most difficult part of the time trial. 600 million people are expected to watch the event on television.
Otherwise, Roglič will not hit the track until after 5 p.m., which means that the fans will have plenty of time to socialize and cheer.