Sunday, September 30, 2012

More: 2013 Giro d'Italia

The the 3 weeks of the 2013 Giro d'Italia will look like this:
- 7 stages with sprint finishes,
- 5 stages over mid-height mountains,
- 5 stages over high mountains,
- 2 individual time trials; one an uphill TT; the two TTs total 92.4 km
- 1 team time trial; 17.4 km

The start will be in Naples on May 4 and finish in Brescia on May 26 having covered a distance of 3,405.3 km. It will leave Italy only once with a stage in France, stage 15, for the Col du Galibier, one of the classic climbs of the Tour de France.

The Giro will touch every region in the south of Italy except for Sicily, with a route from Naples to Basilicata and Calabria before heading back along the spine of the Adriatic coast through Puglia, Molise and Abruzzo. Then comes a 55.5 km individual time trial to Saltara (stage 8), the course where current Italian national team cycling coach Paolo Bettini became the Italian road race champion and where the time trial specialists could try to pull out a big enough gap to survive the final week of the Giro in the hope of staying in the pink jersey all the way to Brescia.

The Tre Cime di Lavaredo (Three Peaks of Lavaredo), stage 20, will be back and will be the penultimate stage of the 2013 Giro d'Italia, on Saturday May 25; they were first included in the Giro in 1967 and last included in 2007. The day before, stage 19, will feature a stage that includes the Gavia and the Stelvio.

The finishing stage in Brescia will be for the sprinters, a departure from recent editions. Recent winners in Brescia have been Cipollini (2002), Bettini (2006), and Greipel (2010).

New stages for the Giro will include the individual time trial up to Polsa (stage 18) as well as the team time trial in Forio di Ischia (stage 2), where in 1959, an individual time trial was held (it had been anticipated of that the winner of that stage would be Jacques Anquetil but the surprise winner was Antonino Catalano (Bianchi-Pirelli team) from Palermo, Sicily). There are other innovations, such as the start in Busseto to honor Giuseppe Verdi, and the San Sepolcro-Firenze stage 8 to honor Gino Bartali .

The stages, in English, and using a five star rating with 5 stars being the most difficult:

1st stage - 4 May NAPLES - NAPLES 156 km  *

2nd stage - 5 May ISCHIA - FORIO (team time trial) 17.4 km ***

3rd stage - 6 May SORRENTO - MARINA DI ASCEA 212 km ***

4th stage - 7 May POLICASTRO BUSSENTINO - SERRA SAN BRUNO 244 km ***

5th stage - 8 May COSENZA - MATERA 199 km **

6th stage - 9 May MOLA DI BARI - MARGHERITA DI SAVOIA 154 km *

7th stage - 10 May SAN SALVO - PESCARA 162 km ***

8th stage - 11 May GABICCE MARE - SALTARA (individual time trial) 55.5 km ****

9th stage - 12 May SANSEPOLCRO - FLORENCE 181 km ***

                  13 May Rest Day

10th stage - 14 May CORDENONS - ALTOPIANO DEL MONTASIO 167 km ****

11th stage - 15 May TARVISIO (Cave del Predil) - VAJONT 1963/2013 (Erto and Casso) 184 km **

12th stage - 16 May LONGARONE - TREVISO 127 km *

13th stage - 17 May BUSSETO - CHERASCO 242 km **

14th stage - 18 May CERVERE - BARDONECCHIA 156 km ****

15th stage - 19 May CESANA TORINESE - COL DU GALIBIER (Valloire) 150 km *****

                   20 May Rest Day

16th stage - 21 May VALLOIRE - IVREA 237 km **

17th stage - 22 May CARAVAGGIO - VICENZA 203 km *

18th stage - 23 May MORI - POLSA (individual time trial) 19.4 km ****

19th stage - 24 May PONTE DI LEGNO - VAL MARTELLO/MARTELLTAL 138 km *****

20th stage - 25 May SILANDRO/SCHLANDERS - TRE CIME DI LAVAREDO (      Auronzo di      Cadore) 202 km *****

21st stage - 26 May RIESE PIO X - BRESCIA 199 km *

At a glance:

Rider comments tomorrow...

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