Of the 109 riders that began the Giro d'Italia on 10 May, 65 of them made it to the finish in Milan on 31 May. Riders were allowed to ride on their own or as a member of a team. There were seven teams that competed in the race: Bianchi-Pirelli, Ganna-Dunlop, Gloria-Hutchinson, Legnano-Hutchinson, Maino-Clément, Touring-Pirelli, and Olympia-Spiga.
The peloton was primarily composed of Italians. The field featured three former Giro d'Italia champions in four-time winner Alfredo Binda, single-time winner Gaetano Belloni, and reigning champion Luigi Marchisio. Other notable Italian riders that started the race included Learco Guerra, Michele Mara, Felice Gremo, and Domenico Piemontesi. Frenchman Antonin Magne — who would go on to win the Tour de France twice — competed in the race, as well as future world champion, Belgian rider Jean Aerts. This race also saw the first Spanish riders compete with Mariano Cañardo and Ricardo Montero.