We were promised an enthralling start to the 2014 Giro d’Italia though organisers RCS Sport probably did not realise just how incident-packed a short team time trial through Belfast would be.
As a sunny afternoon made way for a rainy evening, it proved to be a tricky 25 minutes or so for pro cycling’s elite as they looked to make a big start at the Big Start.
For Svein Tuft (Orica-GreenEDGE) and his team-mates, they did so expertly to deliver the Canadian into the pink jersey.
But joy in the Australian team’s camp was in stark contrast to the atmosphere at Garmin-Sharp after team leader Dan Martin suffered a heavy, race-ending crash.
WorldTour photographer Stefano Sirotti was on hand to capture all the thrills and spills as the 97th Corsa Rosa got underway in Belfast.
Relive stage one of the Giro d’Italia in the full-screen gallery below.