Exactly a hundred days from now, one of the world’s largest sport events, the Giro d’Italia 2020 will start from Hungary. To mark the countdown, the country’s emblematic buildings and sites both in the capital and in the countryside, such as the Chain Bridge, Heroes’ Square, and the Veszprém Fire Tower, were all lit up in pink yesterday evening.
Traditionally, a hundred days before the “big start,” the Grande Partenza of the prestigious Italian bicycle tournament, on the Pink Night, the emblematic buildings and symbols of the cities of that year’s route are lit up in the official color of the race in an eye-catching manner.
The color pink was chosen as the official color of the tournament, because La Gazzetta dello Sport, Italy’s largest sports daily that launched the first race in 1908, was – and still is – printed on pink paper. This is why the winner’s shirt, the maglia rosa is also pink.
This year, the Giro d’Italia will begin in Budapest on May 9, 2020, and the capital has lit its emblematic buildings, the Chain Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, and Vajdahunyad Castle in pink, but the new Puskás Arena and the Danube Arena were also dressed in pink. The countryside sites of the race were also illuminated, so iconic buildings of Tata, Tihany, Balatonfűzfő, Balatonalmádi, Hévíz, Keszthely, Székesfehérvár, and Hegymagas also glowed pink.
The main event of the Pink Night was held at the City Park Ice rink, where Olympic champions, Olympians, as well as Ambassadors of the National Sports Agency, which organizes the Hungarian Giro Start, Olympic champion swimmer Ágnes Kovács, three-time Olympics champion waterpolo player Gergely Kiss, former professional tennis player Ágnes Szávay, and Balázs Baji track and field athlete all promoted the Grande Partenza. Olympic champion, short-track skater Shaolin Sándor Liu was the guest of honor of the event, who said he and his teammates train a lot on bikes, so he has bad memories of biking.
Former professional world champion boxer István Kovács’s bike fanaticism derives from the triathlon, and Ágnes Kovács also rode a lot in her childhood, as did Ágnes Szávay, who spent most of her childhood in Soltvadkert on a bike, and Gergely Kiss, who biked at his grandparents around Ráckeve during summer holidays.
Zsigmond Nagy, Executive Director of the Sports Agency, pointed out at the event: As the Pink Night is highlighted in a stylish way – we are talking about an outstanding sporting event besides the festival and its cultural nature. The values it represents are a great help to advertise cycling and to enhance its domestic rise, which is one of the main goals of the Big Start in Hungary!”