“Un primo, sessanta secondi” di Giovanni Visconti
«I did the first race in secret. It was my sister's communion day. We were on the terrace, where we gathered when relatives were there. At one point my father winks at me and we run away. It's 1991, I'm almost 8 years old and, as if that weren't enough, I finish last behind a little girl. Giovanni Visconti last behind a little girl: a really good start, isn't it?».
Giovanni Visconti, one year after his retirement from racing (March 2022) after a seventeen-year career among professionals, talks about himself in the book Un primo, sessanta secondi. The title – a pun on the passing of time – photographs with self-irony the correspondence, more or less arithmetic, between the occasions in which Visconti crossed the finish line first and the times, much more numerous, in which he only came close to success . In over twenty years of cycling career, for every rare and hard-fought victory Visco has in fact tasted the bitterness of defeat, which in many cases presented itself with the mocking face of a placing.
But for him it's not the results that speak so much as the stories of a life that has always put the bicycle at the centre. Stories can all be found in these pages. Childhood in the streets of Palermo and the first races among thousands of sacrifices and adventurous trips; the intense and conflictual relationship with the father; the desire for redemption, and detachment, from Sicily but also the pride of one's origins, proudly never denied. Then the transfer and the new life in Tuscany and the birth of heated sporting rivalries, in particular the one with the other Sicilian transplanted on the slopes of Montalbano: Vincenzo Nibali. Finally, the passage among the professionals where, in hundreds and hundreds of races, he has lined up some successes, many defeats and many severe lessons.
Giovanni Visconti didn't win as much as he dreamed of winning, or as much as many expected him to win. But he sweated every penny he earned in his career.
The book, written in friendly tandem with Enzo Vicennati, is a sincere legacy
and a warm thank you to those who, along the cycling roads, knew him and loved him.
Giovanni Visconti was born in Turin in 1983, but grew up in Palermo. After being a great promise of national cycling as an under 23, he was a professional from 2005 to 2022. He obtained 34 victories, of which we remember, among the most important, three titles of Italian champion on the road (2007, 2010 and 2011), two stage wins at the 2013 Giro, two Sabatini Cups (2006 and 2007), one Agostoni Cup (2009), one Giro dell'Emilia (2017) and one Giro di Toscana (2019). For three consecutive years (2009-11) he won the individual classification of the UCI Europe Tour. He took part in twelve Tours of Italy and competed in nine World Championships in the blue jersey.
Enzo Vicennati is a journalist and writer. Born in Ascoli Piceno (1968), he trained at the Roman editorial office of Bicisport, the monthly for which he followed the main events in world cycling from 1992 to 2020, earning the esteem and friendship of many riders. In 2020 he founded and currently directs the web magazine bici.PRO. Author of various publications, in 2008 he wrote together with Tonina Pantani, he was my son (Mondadori).