Saturday, December 1, 2007

2008 Giro d' Italia Presentation

DiLuca, Cunego, and Gimondi enjoy the presentation

The Route (high resolution pdf file available at:

It was entertaining watching the Giro d'Italia presentation on RAI3 today, quite the production. The Giro will have a total length of 3,323 Km over 21 stages. Four (!) time trials and four very difficult stages in the mountains will keep things very interesting. Stage 14 will begin in Verona and head north into the mountains, the first of the leg breaking days.

The Stage 16 ITT of 13.8 Km will finish at Plan de Corones where the last Kms are unpaved (in 2006 this finish, which was included in the for the first time could not be used as planned due to snow); here is Cunego checking out the last section on a scouting trip before the Giro start:

On either side of Stage 16 the climbing days will feature climbs etched in history: Passo Fedaia, Marmolada, Monte Pora, Gavia (Cima Coppi at 2618 meters), Mortirolo and Aprica.

2004 Giro winner, Veronese Damiano Cunego, who may not ride the 2008 edition, was clear about the race. "It will certainly be a very difficult Giro next year, with more time trials and plenty of climbing," he stated.

Andy Hampsten famously staked his claim to a Giro d'Italia win with the passage of the snow-covered Passo di Gavia in 1988. Andy was in Milan Saturday night and pleased to see the famous 18.9-kilometre ascent included for the penultimate day. "The Passo del Mortirolo will come after the Gavia, which is different from the year in which I raced it. I think they have done the Gavia as a non-finishing climb in the last few years, but doing the Mortirolo after the Gavia will be terrible. The Gavia is not the hardest, it is long, it’s steep, there is no way they can go easy over it." The famed Mortirolo averages 10.3 percent over 12.8 kilometres of climbing and tops out 50 kilometres before the finish in Tirano. Eventhough the Giro is held in May the mountain passes can be closed, or barely open as was the Gavia Pass in 2004:

Stage details:
Stage 1
Saturday, May 10
Palermo (Team Time Trial)
28.5 Km
Stage 2
Sunday, May 11
Cefalu - Agrigento
207 Km
Stage 3
Monday, May 12
Catania - Milazzo
208 Km
Stage 4
Tuesday, May 13
Pizzo Calabro - Catanzaro-Lungomare
187 Km
Stage 5
Wednesday, May 14
Belvedere Marittimo - Contursi Terme
170 Km
Stage 6
Thursday, May 15
Potenza - Peschici (Circuito Del Gargano)
247 Km
Stage 7
Friday, May 16
Vasto - Pescocostanzo
179 Km
Stage 8
Saturday, May 17
Rivisondoli - Tivoli
200 Km
Stage 9
Sunday, May 18
Civitavecchia - San Vincenzo
194 Km
Stage Rest Day
Monday, May 19
Stage 10
Tuesday, May 20
Pesaro - Urbino (Individual Time Trial)
36 Km
Stage 11
Wednesday, May 21
Urbania - Cesena
193 Km
Stage 12
Thursday, May 22
Forli - Carpi
171 Km
Stage 13
Friday, May 23
Modena - Cittadella
192 Km
Stage 14
Saturday, May 24
Verona - Alpe Di Pampeago/Val Di Fiemme
195 Km
Stage 15
Sunday, May 25
Arabba - Passo Fedaia/Marmolada (Stars Of The Dolomites)
153 Km
Stage 16
Monday, May 26
San Vigilio Di Marebbe - Plan De Corones (Individual Time Trial)
13.8 Km
Stage Rest Day
Tuesday, May 27
Stage 17
Wednesday, May 28
Sondrio - Locarno
192 Km
Stage 18
Thursday, May 29
Mendrisio - Varese
182 Km
Stage 19
Friday, June 30
Legnano - Presolana/Monte Pora
228 Km
Stage 20
Saturday, June 31
Rovetta - Tirano
224 Km
Stage 21
Sunday, June 1
Cesano Maderno - Milano (Individual Time Trial)
23.5 Km

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