The pink jersey or maglia rosa is worn by the overall leader of the race and is the same colour as the paper used to print Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport. The pink jersey was first introduced in 1931.
This follows the precedent set by the Tour de France, whose leader dons the legendary yellow jersey, in tribute to the yellow pages of that race's founding Auto-Velo newspaper.
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The first rider to wear pink was Learco Guerra, who won the opening stage of the 19th Giro from Milan to Montova.
MOUNTAINS AND POINTS JERSEYS
Where green is the colour of the points (or top sprinter) jersey in the Tour de France, the Giro puts the peloton's best climber in green.
The first climber's competition was created in 1933 with four climbs deciding the winner, who turned out to be Alfredo Binda who dominated the inaugural competition by coming first atop each summit.
The points classification was created in 1966. From 1967 to 1969 the leader wore a red jersey but from 1970 the colour was changed to mauve.
In 1989, the Intergiro competition was created with intermediate sprints, which count towards the overall and points classifications.
The Intergiro sky-blue jersey is the second most important competition in the race and is completely unique to the Giro.
It is precisely because of the Intergiro's non-existence in other cycling races that makes it so difficult to explain. Here we go...
Each day there is a pre-established point along the course where a flying 'stage-finish' takes place, be it on the flat, halfway up a mountain, or on a descent.
The competition is an additional taxing challenge for the riders, who use energy at a critical point in the race when they might be better off saving their strength for an upcoming climb or the final sprint.
The rather complicated system of points is based on a rider's time when he crosses the line each day, and the accumulated times are calculated to select the leader.
Each crossing of the Intergiro line earns a six-, four- and two-second bonus for the first three riders. The first three riders over the finish line of each flat stage are credited 20, 12 and 8 seconds of time-bonus.
There are 20 designated Intergiro sprint-points throughout the race, one each day, excluding time-trials.
Overall leader - Pink, or maglia rosa
Points leader (best sprinter) - Mauve, or ciclamino
Mountains leader (best climber) - Green
Intergiro leader - Sky blue
Prize money: the total prize money up for grabs over the course of the tour stands at 1,150,000 euros.
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