Details on two races for the future.
First up the Giro d’Italia will start in Herning, Denmark in 2012. If the nordic Kingdom is flat, the Giro organisers appear to be compensating elsewhere with the inclusion of the “Zoncolan of the south”, a road near Salerno in Italy’s Campania region – famous for its buffalo mozzarella – that climbs up to the Rifugio Calvanico 1320m.
This is not sky-high but the climb gains 1000m in under 8km, meaning an average gradient in excess of 13% and as the profile shows, sections are far steeper with short moments at 23%. There’s even a Facebook campaign to get it on the race. As ever, it’s a touch of Italian madness, using a finish like this would be something special but technically difficult as you’d have to get a lot of equipment up to the finish line. But it shows how race organisers RCS are on the hunt for new climbs. The news of this comes from Info Oggi but I discovered it from the excellent Cyclismactu.
Next the 2011 Tour of Poland. Not exactly the world’s favourite race but hang on in there as there are some interesting things for the race. The flat stages will be between 100-130 km long, very short indeed for a World Tour race. But they will use circuits with the aim of taking the race to the people rather than happening staying out in the countryside.
Again a theme of compensating for flat stages is in evidence. After the sprinters have had their chances there will be hillier stages at over 200km in length, visiting local ski stations as last year when Dan Martin bust clear to win to win in Ustron. They will also use finishing circuits, repeating the same climbs over 40km circuits and a visit to the neighbouring Czech republic.
Short and sweet
What’s interesting is the view that if you’re going to have a flat stage, you might as well keep it simple. The result over 100km or 180km is probably going to be the same although I can imagine Theo Bos is already licking his lips at the shorter distances.
Two very different races but a shared idea to make the racing exciting by keeping the dull days to a minimum and using as much climbing as possible.