Giro d’Italia organizers outline 6 mountain stages for next year

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MILAN — Next year’s Giro d’Italia will feature tough ascents up Mount Etna, the Blockhaus, the Mortirolo and Santa Cristina.

The six mountain stages of the 2022 Giro were revealed as race organizers continued their staggered presentation of the route.

In a break with tradition, race organizer RCS Sport has decided to release details of the Giro in instalments, starting with the seven stages best suited for sprinters on Monday, and the six hilly legs the following day.

It is in the mountains that the overall winner of the Giro should be decided, however.

“With these six high mountain stages it is clear that the 2022 Giro d’Italia will be another tough one,” reigning champion Egan Bernal said. “The first uphill finish on Etna will be important and could really cut out from the GC those who are not at 100% on form for the first week of the race.

“Then there will be the mythical climbs like the Mortirolo, where great champions have written important chapters in cycling history.”

The Giro starts on May 6 with three stages in Hungary before the first rest day for the transfer back to Italy. Riders are expected to face their first serious test on stage four as it culminates in the ascent up Etna.

There are three more mountain top finishes, including the Blockhaus, where the stage finale features double-digit gradients along a series of hairpin bends leading to the line. There is a double assault of the Blockhaus in the 187-kilometer (116-mile) stage that includes almost 5,000 meters (16,404 feet) of climbing.

There is even more climbing in the Giro’s traditional wine stage. The 200-kilometer (124-mile) leg from Salo to Aprica packs in 5,400 meters (17,717 feet) as it ascends the Goletto di Cadino as well as the Mortirolo and Santa Cristina.

Another stage that has been given five stars – the highest difficulty rating – is the final mountain stage. The 167-kilometer (104-mile) route from Belluno features the last uphill finish and the race’s final three climbs: the the Passo San Pellegrino , the Passo Pordoi – which is the race’s highest point – and the final Passo Fedaia to the foot of the Marmolada glacier.

That should come on the penultimate day of the Giro before what is expected to be the finish of a time trial to Verona on May 29.

Details of the finale will be announced on Thursday, when the route will be revealed in full and RCS Sport will confirm precisely when all the stages will take place.

Giro d’Italia to start on former railway line in Abruzzo

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L’AQUILA, Italy — The 2023 edition of the Giro d’Italia will start with an individual time trial on a coastal cycle path that has been recreated from a former railway line in the region of Abruzzo.

At a ceremony in the Abruzzo capital of L’Aquila, race organizers announced that the Grand Tour will run from May 6-28 and begin with an 18.4-kilometer (11.4-mile) time trial on the Adriatic coast.

Almost the entire time trial will be on the spectacular Costa dei Trabocchi cycle path that hugs the coast line before a short climb to the finish in Ortona.

“I am excited at the idea of the Grande Partenza (Big Start) of the Giro in Abruzzo . It is a dream come true, especially with regard to the prologue on the Costa dei Trabocchi,” said Trek-Segafredo cyclist Dario Cataldo, who is from the region.

“I well remember that when the cycle path project was born and I saw the first tracks, I imagined the beauty of a Giro d’Italia passing along the route. It looked perfect.”

Stage 2 is a 204-kilometer (127-mile) leg from Teramo to San Salvo that is hilly in the first part but expected to end in a bunch sprint.

Stage 3 will also start in the Abruzzo region, in Vasto, but it will then head south and will be detailed when the full route is revealed on Oct. 17 in Milan.

The Giro will also return to the region for Stage 7, a daunting climb on the Gran Sasso d’Italia to Campo Imperatore. The high mountain stage, on May 12, will be the edition’s first finish above 2,000 meters.

Australian Jai Hindley won this year’s Giro.

Norway takes gold-medal lead at world road cycling titles

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WOLLONGONG, Australia – Soren Waerenskjold repeated Norway’s gold medal success at the world road cycling championships a day after Tobias Foss finished first in the elite men’s time trial.

Waerenskjold won the men’s under-23 time trial on the second day of the championships with a dominant performance. He clocked 34 minutes, 13.40 seconds over the 28.8-kilometer course to beat Belgian Alec Segaert by 16.34 seconds.

British rider Leo Hayter, the younger brother of elite rider Ethan Hayter, was 24.16 seconds off the pace for the bronze medal.

Foss beat a strong field to win the elite time trial, the biggest win of his career.

Norway has two gold medals, while Dutch ace Ellen van Dijk beat Australian Grace Brown to take out the women’ elite time trial.

The mixed relay time trial is set for Wednesday. The championships conclude on the weekend with the women’s road race on Saturday and the men’s on Sunday.