2022 Giro d’Italia Route

The route of the 2022 Giro d’Italia has finally been unveiled and a tough edition awaits.

First a quick note on the route announcement, there was no TV presentation this time and as a result, organisers RCS decided to try and make a stunt by releasing batches of stages online, first the Grande Partenza was unveiled, then the sprint stages, the mountain stages and so on. It’s been tedious, like ordering a pizza on for the pizzaïolo to emerge from the kitchen and show you the flour. Then ten minutes later the doors opened and instead of a pizza, the proud chef would show you the mozzarella. Another wait and the tomatoes were on display and you’ve endured a parade of ingredients when you’re hungry for the dish. Because, like a pizza, a grand tour is more than a collection of 21 stages, how they are arranged and fit together is as important as the route for each day. With that in mind, let’s tuck in…

Stage 1 is on the Friday and a road stage to Visegrad and an uphill finish to the castle that’s remiscient of the Namur citadel finish of the GP de Wallonie. Here it’s 5km at 5% and a wide road but the slope bites towards the top.

Stage 2 revives and extends the TT route that was planned for the original start in 2020, it’s a big boulevard course over 9.2km and the final km includes cobbles and gets steep at the end. Stage 3 is a sprint stage along the shores of Lake Balaton and starts in Kaposvàr which happens to be the HQ of Kometa, the pork processing company that sponsors the Eolo-Kometa team so you can guess one of the invited wildcard teams already. Then Monday is the rest day and travel for the convoy as the race heads for Sicily.

Stage 4 is already an Etna summit finish and a big day for the GC contenders. It’s a familiar location now for the Giro and uses old roads but in new ways, first the section to Ragalna as used in 2018 with sprints on the way, then the climb to the top features the same finale as 2017 when Jan Polanc won.

Stage 5 has some climbs to tempt an early breakaway but it’s a likely sprint finish. The Giro has a lot of vertical gain and days like this help the count. Stage 6 is another day for the sprinters as the race heads up the coast.

Stage 7 features an intriguing route with a reported 4,490m of vertical gain, as much as any Alpine stage and constant climbing and descending. With the TT and the Etna summit finish some will be well down on GC. There’s a good chance for the breakaway and for someone to rent the maglia rosa for a week. Stage 8 is a circuit race around Naples, a hilly 19km loop repeated six times, it’d make a good worlds circuit.

Stage 9 is the Blockhaus “summit” finish although the Giro these days only finishes at 1650m when the top of the road goes to 2,000m. But it’s plenty, Nairo Quintana won here last time, beating Thibaut Pinot and the surprise of Tom Dumoulin. Talking of surprise the race came here in 1967 and an infamous newspaper headline the next day was “Un velocista belga supera i nostri scalatori“, or “Belgian sprinter beats our climbers”… a young Eddy Merckx of course.

Stage 10 has a flat start and the rest of the day doesn’t look like much but the hills of the Marche are steep (and often cracked and potholed) so a lot of sprinters will be dropped.

Stage 11 is a classic sprint stage and an active rest day for many in the peloton, the course so flat, the hardest workers will be TV and radio commentators trying to fill the airtime with something.

Stage 12 another intriguing route in the arid Ligurian hills around Genoa because the final can reward attacks. The Monte Becco-Monte Fasce climb is key, take a slender lead over the top and you can hope to keep it by the finish. But this isn’t ambush country, the roads are often wide, except for the final descent which is narrow and awkward. It should be dry.

Stage 13 starts in Sanremo and traces the primavera route backwards for a while before heading inland and a likely sprint in Cuneo at the foot of the Alps.

Stage 14 is another circuit race, this time it’s got the Superga climb outside Torino and its sister climb across the same ridge, the Colle della Maddalena and there’s also the Santa Brigida climb and more. It’s only 153km but there’s 3750m of vertical gain and all on twisting roads, there’s little time to rest at all.

Stage 15 is a mountain stage into the Aosta valley and instead if riding straight up the valley the route sways like a snowboarder in a half-pipe. First it’s up to the left and then down, then up to the right and back down to the valley. They’re both hard climbs and have been used by the U23 Giro della Valle d’Aosta race. The final one to Cogne is more of a gradual drag on the whole but you’d hesitate to call it a big ring climb. It’s the sort of place where Richard Carapaz could power away from the pure climbers.

Stage 16 is a huge day in the mountains, a reported 5,440m of vertical gain and at 200km, the longest of the mountain stages which is shorter than usual. Sure the Mortirolo is climbed via the easier side from Nonno but it’s still hard, plenty of 8%. The road to Teglio is marked as a sprint but it’s a tough climb to get there

Stage 17 starts up the Tonale, a chance for the breakaway to go clear but the battle could go on during the descent and the steep climb to Giovo could be needed. The “Passo del Vetriolo” is a tough, awkward climb – although the name’s an invention by the Giro, no such place exists on the ground – and the descent is toboggan-style to the valley and then comes the Menador climb to Monte Rovere, the Kaiserjägerweg road and one of the fringe benefits of history as this was an old military road, once built to kill but now a scenic ride up the cliffside and through narrow tunnels.

Stage 18 is a sprint interlude but we’ll see which sprinters remain in the race and whether the breakaway can have an advantage. The Ca’ del Poggio climb features to spice things up but there’s 50km to get it together before Treviso.

Stage 19 makes a detour to Slovenia, the new Yorkshire, but first a dash through Buja, a village of sorts, perhaps even a collection of villages, but home to Il Rosso di Buja, Alessandro de Marchi, so guess who is going in the breakaway? Listed as a mid-mountain stage, you can make a good argument to delete the mid- prefix. Kolovrat is Slovenian for “spinning wheel” but good luck with that on the climb here as it’s 10km of 10%. The final climb is 7km at 5% but note the dip in the middle, the final 4km are a more selective 7-8%.

Stage 20 is the last hurrah in the mountains and a big day. There’s an early climb thrown in before a dash up the valley into the Dolomotes and the steady San Pellegrino and Pordoi climbs before the mean Marmolada and its double-digit gradients. Weather permitting.

Stage 21 features a copycat time trial in Verona, the same course as when Chad Haga won in 2019 complete with the arena finish and Primož Roglič overhauled Mikel Landa – of course – to take the last podium place.

The Verdict
Just 26km of time trials and no team time trial either make this an edition that will tempt every climber, who can now dream of winning a grand tour outright rather than consolatory stage wins in the Tour while the spoils go the Slovenians, or maybe the Ineos millionaires. We’ve seen the trend for reducing time trials in the Tour and Vuelta but the Giro had resisted this, until now when it’s gone for the fewest kilometres in memory although whether this is a trend or just a test remains to be seen but it’s remarkable given a mid-race TT could have generated a home win for Filippo Ganna and the attendant audience ratings. On the whole stages are often shorter too, the longest mountain stage is 200km and if there are other stages of 201km, that’s it and gone are the 240km days. Yet in no way is this an easy Giro, there are few sprint stages and a lot of vertical gain.

The big question is who is going to start. With Egan Bernal returning to the Tour does Richard Carapaz get a leadership role here instead? Simon Yates will fancy the course. Is Jonas Vingegaard obliged to start the Tour in Copenhagen or can he escape the pressure and find a course to suit. UAE’s new recruit João Almeida would have liked more TTs and has still to convince on the big, long climbs although he’s on course.

54 thoughts on “2022 Giro d’Italia Route”

  1. Agree 100% about the lack of TV presentation show. I’d love to know who to blame for the dumb idea of dribbling the Corsa Rosa 2022 route out…like drips from a bottle of pink prosecco that lost its fizz IMHO.
    By May I’ll be “happy as Larry” (as some would say) but it’ll be AFTER the money-grab/salute to autocrats is done and Il Giro shows up an hour’s bike-ride from my front door on Stage 4. 🙂
    While not a big fan of chrono stages, I’ll agree this Corsa Rosa seems unbalanced for a Grand Tour. Time for some new blood at RCS…Vegni and Co. are not and will never be Vicenzo Torriani (or even Angelo Zomegnan) so call time on them and put someone with passion and imagination in-charge, per favore!

      • The Cassani taking over at RCS talk has died down now. Those worried about lack-of-snow must not be thinking of Fedaia/Marmolada on Stage 20..and landscapes? They’ll be plenty of those. RAI TV seems to be acting like they’ll be showing La Corsa Rosa 2022 based on last night’s Radio Corsa show. Can’t see Italia 1 ponying up the cash as they did for a few years back-in-the-day and with the Giro being a national treasure and tourist marketing device like no other, perhaps they’ll tap into some of the Covid relief euros to help RCS/RAI close any funding gap? Urbano Cairo, boss of RCS also has interests in TV channel LA7 though it’s hard to imagine them coming up with the resources to cover the race compared to RAI.
        But it’s ITALIA, so why not some drama? 🙂

  2. There look to only be two climbs that go above 2000m. Is this typical of the Giro and the climbs available in Italy as a whole or is it a particularly low altitude (although rarely flat) route?

    Thanks for the excellent in-depth analysis. I had avoided paying much attention to the parade of ingredients in the hope that you would be writing a post about it once everything was revealed.

    • It’s probably a bit below average and perhaps the snow has put them off, it’s a persistent problem but there’s still plenty to choose from, and the Stelvio is used sparingly.

      I too avoided some of the parade of stages this week and doing the write-up above helped put everything together.

  3. Would actually be an – as perfect as it can be – course for Alaphilippe in my opinion.
    Lots of steep and short mountains and lots of ambush country combined with only a few long high-altitude climb.
    But probably he will want to show his rainbow jersey in France again…

    • As you say he’ll surely do the Tour and comes off the classics too so adding the Giro is when he normally has a rest from racing. But one day he’ll try the Giro and the route has so many stages that are ideal for him, in 2020 he could take the maglia rosa on the opening day even.

    • Interesting idea that I’d be keen to see. A tilt at GC here followed by stage hunting at the Tour could work nicely, but I imagine his season is structured around peaking for the Ardennes and the Tour, so the Giro would likely be missed.

    • I’d be *immensely* happy to be proven wrong, but this is way too hard for Alaphilippe. Lots of ~10km/~10% climbs which will have the best pure climbers crawling up for more than half an hour each. And although there’s not an authentic 6-hour tappone, that sort of altitude gain close to or well above 4,000 mts shows up too many times to allow Julian not to botch at least one of those stages. As they use to say on @laflammerouge16, the TdF has long gone the way of a huge kermesse, which makes some occasional surprise result still possible for those who aren’t pure fondo/GC riders (and that may even be interesting). Even a diminished Giro is a different beast.
      Of course, I’m not saying that a given type of athlete is better – it’s just quite clear what direction the Giro and the Tour/Vuelta have been choosing, even if perhaps now things are going to change again, with this Giro giving up on long ITTs and over-200-km stages.

    • Hard to say with present low-res maps, but I’m pretty sure they’ll climb Etna the side Contador 2011 did rather than Polanc’s. From a different approach road, indeed. Wind will be key, if any.

      On the road to Potenza (from “Diamond” to “Power”, eh eh), keep an eye on what they call Monte Scuro, which I suspect might be the Montagna Grande di Viggiano. If that’s the case, it’s some 6 kms at an average 10% gradient which could be well able to tear the peloton into thin pieces, if somebody is in that sort of mood. It’s 60 kms to the line, but barely any of them is flat or straight. And it’s not until the thick series of hairpins of Abriola, 30 kms later, when they’ll get on a decently wide (yet, uphill) road again.

      The Blockhaus stage has the potential to hurt a lot. The final one is really a pain climb. As a single climb on the day, it produced some of the more notable uphill time differences in recent years.
      It’s an impressive first “week” (9 stages) which should force people to start on good form and pull it deep into the very last day of the third week.

  4. It’s a fairly odd route, the two circuit races are quite odd as well as the lack of Ganna fodder TT stages. There seems to my eye to be an awful lot of transferring, it might not be too popular with the riders. Never mind Alaphilippe, is this a route that would suit Ciccone (if he could hang it together for 3 weeks, which he never has yet!)?

    • The first week, whose hardness is quite impressive as such, is the worst one also in terms of transferring. Crossing the Stretto, then again Potenza to Napoli and Napoli to Isernia are going to make recovery complicated – which is perhaps why the Napoli stage is a circuit, making it a little easier for the support staff, and a short one, making it more manageable in timetable terms. A decent ITT here would have probably been better for a balanced course, but maybe it would put too much pressure on the GC guys between two very complicated mountain stages. Had I designed the course, I’d have taken the risk 😉

      Many of the other transfers between arrivals and start of the following stage aren’t actually that annoying because although places look far they’re all well connected by high-speed motorways.

      However, this is an aspect on which Vegni always worked well enough, it must be acknowledged, especially taking into account how financial circumstances often limited the course design.

  5. I love this as I hate TTs and think they ruin cycling as they limit GT winners to a select few. So now it’s open and a huge chance for the skinny climbers out there. Bring it on.

    • This is a popular sentiment but for me there’s few things as tedious in cycling as watching a load of climbers huddled together not attacking each other. Take that Etna stage. Looks spectacular on paper but it’s so open and windy nobody will attack. And the riders over the last few years who have attacked and made stage races interesting have been Pogacar, Roglic and Froome generally, plus Simon Yates on occasion. The stages that force interest, no matter what, are the big mountain marathons like the Stelvio stage the other year. But there’s none of that here.

      • Absolutely agree with the general spirit of your post.

        That said, Froome rather belongs quite clearly to the “on occasion” category, which Roglic was also about to fall into… until last Vuelta, at least.

        I assume that the focus of your opinion is on the very last *four* seasons, say from Finestre 2018 included on, or you should have also included the likes of Bardet, Nibali, Quintana and Contador for their feats during the 2016 or 2017 seasons, not to speak of the previous ones (well, actually Nibali and Quintana were still on an attacking mood during the 2019 Tour, as they were winning the 18th-Galibier and the 20th-Val Thorens stages – but that had no relation with GC, which is sort of your point, I guess, although you don’t name it).

        However, I’d say that you pretty much forgot Carapaz and Bernal speaking of highly successful and repeated attacking moves, long-range ones included (they’ve already got more of them than Froome in his whole career). Which is not a small distraction on your part, given that with this couple of guys we’re speaking of 25% of GT wins / GT winners in the period you’re supposedly speaking about!

        Whereas if we speak of *trying* while still fighting for a GC of sort – maybe getting “just” a stage win or a GCTtop-ten along the way – not only outright triumphing in the final classification, well, it would be quite fair to also add Superman López, Mikel Landa, Guillaume Martin, David Gaudu…

        • I was making a sort of general point I suppose, that in recent times the most spectacular riders on climbs have also been the best time trialists. I.e, they are the best cyclists. Most particularly Roglic and Pogacar. Alaphilippe in ‘his’ Tour a couple of years ago was also attacking all over the place on any hill, and winning a TT. It’s been discussed a lot on here at various times that there really isn’t a distinction now between climbers and TT specialists (in terms of GC contenders), just a distinction between those that win and those that don’t. The best climbers are also the best TTers. Evenepoel might be a blast from the past in terms of someone who can gain big time in TTs and then lose little chunks of it here and there but still win. I don’t think Gaudu and Martin count really. Martin is one of those riders who seem to abound these days, able to scrabble up the climbs on the back of the lead group but get dropped when it gets serious and lose chunks of times in TTs while looking like he’s never seen a TT bike before. If it rolls his way he can just about hang in the top 10.

          • To be fair to both Martin and Gaudu though, they’re both on MPCC teams who aren’t using ketones. The winners and spectacular riders of recent years are all on teams who aren’t signed up to MPCC. That needs to be levelled up somehow in my opinion, either by letting them all use it or none.

          • That is, you’re actually speaking of Pogacar alone ^__^

            Roglic is indeed impressive on climbs, but I wouldn’t call him “spectacular” in the sense you could use the word for Pogacar or Bernal, unless he goes back to his old antics as he did in last Itzulia or Vuelta (well, during the latter he was actually prompted by Bernal!).
            After all, he happened to be losing ground on climbs against several climbers, and not necessarily top ones. He was delivered blows on mountains by Carapaz, of course, both at the Giro and at the Vuelta, decisive ones or nearly so. And he was repeatedly beat uphill by the likes Superman López, Enric Mas, Hugh Carthy, Simon Yates, Landa… (I’m speaking of mountains alone, of course, but that’s precisely he point here).
            He can destroy all of them also uphill, on the right day and stage, no doubt. He’s more steady, too. He’s clearly a GT champion, unlike many of the above.

            But, for now, and unlike Pogacar, I’d still say he’s *among (a decent number of) the best* while climbing – and in a generation which lacks top-level pure climbers, too.
            Which is still great and way more “normal” than Pogacar (not implying anything specific about Pogi, just that he’s got clearly an out-of-this-world talent, whether any other extra is being taken advantage of or not).

            Which means that people tend to build up a narrative, maybe prompted by a single very special athlete, and then generalise (“hey, the best TT men are the best climbers, too!”), but that’s quite far from what we’re seeing now.
            We also call “best TTers” those who’re performing great in the context of present GTs, which are designed in a certain way… Roglic would still be among the best even in a context more favourable to pure TTing, no doubt, while I’m not as sure about Pogi. He’d be “among the best” (5-10-15…?), that’s clear, but I think that – for what we’ve seen until now, and he’s very young, obviously – he’d never be an Indurain or a Rominger, even. Not that he needs to.

            PS Re: Alaphilippe, frankly dunno, he can pull out a great ITT if it’s short and hilly, perhaps with some good descent in, too, that is, if it’s what he’d do in a one-day race finale… but, barring that *very special* Tour, his present palmarés doesn’t make of him a great TT man, he falls down the ranking in case the race is faster than 40 km/h and/or longer than 20 kms..

  6. I wonder with such a little amount of TT it may actually make the TTs we do have really interesting. I can see a situation at stage 21 where we have 4-5 climbers within 60 seconds of each other and it’ll come down to who is the least worse TT rider

      • Not quite. Just have a look at the courses, barring perhaps 2015. The organisers took away ITT kms, indeed, but they also made the mountain stages much easier.

        And, in fact, despite the lighter mountain stages, in 2017 without ITTs (some 36.5 total kms) Froome would have ended behind both Bardet and Urán in GC, less than a minute shy from his gregario Landa – with an already free-falling Aru not far behind, either.

        If it wasn’t for the Ventoux farcical “clock adjustment”, where Froome should have been given his actual time on the line – irrespective of race accidents of sorts (as it always happened before and after) – a similar situation would be have been apparent in 2016, too, with Quintana, Bardet and Adam Yates all overcoming Froome in case no ITTs (54.5 total kms) were actually available.

        No need to say that without the 65 total kms of ITTs Froome would have found himself pretty much behind Quintana in 2013, too. What’s quite interesting about 2013 is that during that edition Froome was always giving his all, which makes the argument “he’d push harder if the rest was closer” especially weak.

        Please note that I’m absolutely aware that a GT with no ITTs makes little sense, plus Sky would have ridden a different race and got a whole different preparation, too.

        But the simplistic narrative you presented above simply doesn’t cope well with what actually happened both in course design and on the road.

          • To me, the two Giri where Dumoulin was competing were some of the most thrilling in recent memory. Yates pretty much did him self in trying to take the minutes he’d need to face Dumoulin in the TT, and then blew up trying to do it. The only reason we don’t remember this as much was because of Froome’s absurd attack over the Finestre, which overshadowed the entire dynamic of what else was going on.

    • And also just a popular holiday destination, the “riviera” for Hungarians and others in nearby countries. As befits the Giro because of Italy and the Austro-Hungarian past the route has a lot of military moments, with Blockhaus (so called because at the time Italy’s officer class often spoke German more or as much as Italian and so the fortifications got the Germanic label) and the Menador especially.

  7. I get consistently frustrated with anticipated Giro stages shortened due to weather. Maybe the lower, high elevation average will help complete a course as originally planned.

  8. Seems a lot too Vuelta like for me. The classic Giro shots are always those of the riders pedalling between the snow banks, doesnt seem much chance of that with this route. No Tuscan or Umbrian landscapes either. Slim pickings both for the TT and sprinters. At least Larry will be happy with yet more Sicilian excursions.

    • In a way there’s even less time trialling than a Vuelta where they usually have, say, a prologue + 30km TT later on. But note the big Alpine ascents, some can take an hour to climb so it’s very different than the Vuelta where it’s often 15-20 minutes and big climbs like Covadonga are half an hour.

  9. Another stage race which confirms the tendancy to shorter stages with just three scraping the 200km threshold. Excitement – maybe, at the expense of tradition, and a pity for old timers like me. One of the challenges, the ability to cope with multiple stages of 250km or more, has been removed from much modern stage racing.
    Just for contrast, and going back to 1951 the stages started: 202, 202, 252, a gentle 192 before an ITT of 83km the straight back to 273, 234 etc. All that on steel frames, wool jerseys, no gels. It’s another sport.

    • “All that on steel frames, wool jerseys, no gels. It’s another sport.”
      But is it a BETTER sport? I think you all already know my opinion on that.
      A few weeks ago I was visiting with our friends at GIOS-Torino. A discussion ensued about the guys who made “fake boobs” out of their radios to improve their aerodynamic profile. The response from Aldo Gios was certainly “It’s another sport” and not in a good way 🙂

    • Vegni.

      As reported by La Flamme Rouge, Vegni on Radiocorsa about if this Giro can attract big names: “There all the features in the route for this. Everyone will make his choice. I’d like to see a challenge on two grand tours per season from the riders that represent the future of this sport”
      “Winning three or four time the Tour de France doesn’t make a great difference, but winning Giro and Tour in the same season gives you a really important distinctive element”
      “Now we’ll start our work to bring a decent cast to this Giro as the routes are up to the big riders we want to have some of them like in the last years”

      Guess who’s Vegni speaking about 😉
      Our work = €€€ ?
      They need the TV money on the table to know the sort of athletes they can lure in, once that’s signed we’ll have a startlist.

        • Do UAE need to win anything? It’s not like they’re trying to sell anything to justify the expenditure. And it’s not like the expenditure will even appear as the slightest dot on their radar. Just look at the proposed European Super League in football, the clubs that weren’t interested were the ones owned by Emirates. They don’t need more money. If any team can afford to ignore the Tour de France and let their star rider do as they please surely it’s them?

          • IMHO if you’re trying to “sportwash” a regime like the UAE, winning LeTour with a fresh-faced, likeable guy in yellow like Pogacar is Job #1. Everything else is an afterthought. My hope is Pogacar doesn’t see things this way, as he demonstrated at L-B-L and Lombardia.

          • Man City are owned by Abu Dhabi, and were one of the Super League teams. Apart from the member-owned German clubs, PSG, owned by Qatar, were the biggest team not to get involved. Presumably Qatar didn’t want to fall out with FIFA just before the World Cup: the biggest sports-washing prize of all.

          • @Nick correct.

            Bahrain/UAE/Kazakhstan would all dump their cycling teams in a flash, shutting down the teams mid-season even, if there was even a whiff of a suggestion that their cycling involvement could endanger their FIFA/EPL status.

        • Of course, I also had the impression that it was wishful thinking rather than anything else. Who knows the sort of TV deal they expect to ink in order to pay fees nobody could answer ‘no’ to.

          That said, I wonder which riders were they thinking about when designing a course that much tilted in favour of *pure* climbers, a specialty which isn’t especially shining as filled by top quality athletes right now, unless you count Bernal in, which might be a little reductive towards him.
          RCS wasn’t thinking about Almeida, I’d say, given the way he reacted!

          INEOS could try and go for a bis both with Carapaz or Bernal (with the latter pretty much convinced to go back to the Tour), but may also give it a try with Dani Martínez or Adam Yates. Otherwise, there’s Jumbo’s Vingegaard in case they force him away from the TdF’s Danish start. And Simon Yates, too
          Who else? Maybe Enric Mas if Movistar is able to give up on their Tour-centric vision. The Spanish press reports that the unwritten goal for Mas’ third and for now “last” season with Movistar is “winning a GT” – which could probably be achieved with a strong performance at the Giro rather than trying the Tour and then going to the Vuelta as he did this year. What’s curious is that he’d probably have fancied some more ITT kms, given that he’s not that bad against the clock – when compared to other “pure climbers”.
          On the contrary, surely Superman López should like the course: after all he’s been among the *very few* (and that’s a prudential overstatement, didn’t check much) able to ride away face to face from the terrible Slovenian duo on an uphill finish in the last couple of seasons.

          Hugh Carthy or Jack Haig should jump a further level up, and perhaps they could so, especially the latter if the Bahrain magic continues – which is to be seen. His best option is probably to start as Landa’s lieutenant 😉
          A succes by Landa would indeed be a Twitter marketing triumph, no doubt, maybe that’s what Vegni & co have in mind. Give him back what was kept away from him in 2015… Or a resurrected Hindley who comes back form the shadow to claim what Dennis brought away from him in 2020?

          Other pure climbers who were able to podium or win a GT have all been engulfed by the terrible born-in-1990 general crisis: Quintana, Pinot, Bardet might have beat any of the best on a course like this, be it Froome or Roglic (not Pogacar, probably)… if only they had the condition thy were able to achieve some 5 or 6 seasons ago! And you can count Chaves, in, too, if you like. By the way, did RCS notice that Aru retired?! Maybe he was actually their top bet!

          There’s a good deal of Frenchmen who climb frankly well, but it’s to be seen if they can be lured away from their home GT: Gaudu would be my favourite name among them, but there’s Guillaume Martin, too, or Bouchard… Same goes for O’Connor (Ag2R).
          Storer, Mäder, Kuss are other very good climbers whom come to mind, but they need to shift the role they’re used to in order to go for the GC.

          Dunno, can’t see much of an interesting battle on such an unbalanced course with this generation of riders, assuming that Pogacar, Bernal and Roglic will ride only the TdF. Unless somebody is crazy enough to hope for some Ciccone or Fortunato miracle, it’s a very strange moment to offer this kind of course.

          • It’s interesting that the one rider who probably would have, and still might, put all his focus on the Giro was Evenepoel. And this course doesn’t suit him at all. Or at least not as much as one with a couple of long TTs would. It’s certainly an opportunity for Landa and Lopez, but time trials are just one of the many things that usually prevents them from being genuine GC contenders. You could say it also suits Bardet and Pinot, but Bardet would have to enter it first and Pinot would have to finish it. Neither are sure things.

          • @Richard S
            Perhaps I’m wrong, but I think I read somewhere that next year Remco will only ride one GT, the Vuelta. Trying to emend what in 2021 was possibly a mistake? I guess that if Remco was going to be back, they’d put the ITT in for him.
            Not that he’s *at the present* much more relevant in sporting terms for a Giro GC than many other names we could come up with – it’s just that his marketing hype (of course, supported by actual results last season) is still impressive, and RCS would have tried whatever to have him back. Luckily, the team doesn’t look ready to further burn him out both in physical and image terms.
            Even if… anything can happen.

      • Vegni also claimed the reduced chrono kilometers were based on suggestions from the riders. I’d like to know a) Who they were and b) Since when did he start listening and designing La Corsa Rosa based on suggestions from the riders?
        Maybe I’m wrong but I can’t imagine Vincenzo Torriani (or Henri Desgrange) saying, “Hey guys, check this out. What do you think of these stages?”

  10. Thanks for the preview – excellent as usual

    Is this a course for Colbrelli after 2021’s antics?

    typo spotted Verdict
    “In the whole stages are often shorter too” On the whole?

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