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Giro d'Italia 2014

Date range:
May 9 - June 1
  • Giro d'Italia, ITA, WorldTour
  • Stages Expand the race menu
    • Stage 1

      Distance:
      21.7km
      Start location:
      Belfast
      End location:
      Belfast
    • Stage 2

      Distance:
      219km
      Start location:
      Belfast
      End location:
      Belfast
    • Stage 3

      Distance:
      187km
      Start location:
      Armagh
      End location:
      Dublin
    • Rest Day

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 4

      Distance:
      112km
      Start location:
      Giovinazzo
      End location:
      Bari
    • Stage 5

      Distance:
      203km
      Start location:
      Taranto
      End location:
      Viggiano
    • Stage 6

      Distance:
      257km
      Start location:
      Sassano
      End location:
      Montecassino
    • Stage 7

      Distance:
      211km
      Start location:
      Frosinone
      End location:
      Foligno
    • Stage 8

      Distance:
      179km
      Start location:
      Foligno
      End location:
      Montecopiolo
    • Stage 9

      Distance:
      172km
      Start location:
      Lugo
      End location:
      Sestola
    • Rest Day 2

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 10

      Distance:
      173km
      Start location:
      Modena
      End location:
      Salsomaggiore
    • Stage 11

      Distance:
      249km
      Start location:
      Collecchio
      End location:
      Savona
    • Stage 12

      Distance:
      41.9km
      Start location:
      Barbaresco
      End location:
      Barolo (ITT)
    • Stage 13

      Distance:
      157km
      Start location:
      Fossano
      End location:
      Rivarolo Canavese
    • Stage 14

      Distance:
      164km
      Start location:
      Agliè
      End location:
      Oropa
    • Stage 15

      Distance:
      225km
      Start location:
      Valdengo
      End location:
      Montecampione
    • Rest Day 3

      Start location:
      End location:
    • Stage 16

      Distance:
      139km
      Start location:
      Ponte di Legno
      End location:
      Val Martello/Martelltal
    • Stage 17

      Distance:
      208km
      Start location:
      Sarnonico
      End location:
      Vittorio Veneto
    • Stage 18

      Distance:
      171km
      Start location:
      Belluno
      End location:
      Rif. Panarotta
    • Stage 19

      Distance:
      26.8km
      Start location:
      Bassano del Grappa
      End location:
      Cima Grappa (ITT)
    • Stage 20

      Distance:
      167km
      Start location:
      Maniago
      End location:
      Monte Zoncolan
    • Stage 21

      Distance:
      172km
      Start location:
      Gemona
      End location:
      Trieste
  • Race history

May 31, Stage 20: Maniago - Monte Zoncolan 167km

By:
Cycling News
Published:
April 16, 2014, 20:27 BST,
Updated:
May 13, 2014, 11:06 BST

May 31, 2014 - Maniago - Monte Zoncolan, 167 km

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LOCAL HERO
Coppi and Bartali were so omnipotent that we often lose sight of the others great riders from their era. Oreste Conte was one such, and it's difficult to imagine a more stylish cyclist.

Conte somehow made a living from his bike during the war. He'd buy tubulars on the black market, and roam around the country looking to earn a few lire. As such he didn't make his Giro debut until he was 26, but he soon enraptured the public. He and Adolfo Leoni, another great sprinter, were both talented and extremely handsome. So whilst Coppi and Bartali fought for pink, the women couldn't get enough of these two. Leoni was quicker, but Conte the more complete cyclist. He would win thirteen Giro stages over eight editions, and wore pink for a day in 1950. Real class…

SEE, HEAR, FEEL...
The Zoncolan has become such a Giro staple that it's easy to forget that it's a newcomer. It first appeared in 2003, as Gibo' Simoni put the seal on his consummate Giro win. Four years later they tackled it from the harder side, and he produced yet another immense display. Will the Giro ever see his like again?

Simoni wasn't the first big name to win on Zoncolan though. That honour belongs to Fabiana Luperini, winner of five editions of the Giro Donne. Stage nine of the 1997 race included a monstrous stage over Passo Valles, Passo Rolle and finally this thing. How hard is that? Anyway Luperini was so good that they likened her to Pantani, and she danced up it just as she danced up everything else. A bit special, that one…

MOMENT IN TIME
People are forever dripping on about globalization in cycling, but it's nothing new. The start list at the 1932 Giro attests to that. It included no less than 18 stranieri, and one of them caused a genuine sensation on stage two.

Hermann Buse was one of a whole team of Germans. On the road to Udine he took off with Bovet, born in Switzerland but naturalized Italian, and the Frenchman Louviot. Of course nobody thought much of it, least of all maglia rosa Learco Guerra. Only Buse dropped the other two and rolled into town with an 11 minute advantage. When Guerra et al finally turned up the public, far from impressed by their apparent indolence, let them have both barrels. A foreigner in the maglia rosa? Outrageous!

For six further days Buse seemed eminently capable of carting the jersey back to Berlin. Thankfully – at least for the natives – he bonked on the stage to Foggia and lost 33 minutes. The natural order restored? Not quite. Antonio Pesenti, a gregario from Bergamo, replicated his exploit and made off with the jersey he'd keep for the duration. What a race.

SCINTO SAYS
All I can tell you is that the guy who wins it will probably be the best in the race, ergo the maglia rosa.

By now they're beyond tired, so it's about their innate ability to haul themselves over the mountains. It's the same for me, but as we get towards the finish my job becomes still more critical. Extreme fatigue is hard to manage at the best of times, and still more so for guys riding their first or second Giro. So I have to be a psychiatrist, a father figure, a disciplinarian and best friend. It's about doing anything and everything to get them home.

When you're in it you're in it, but when the Giro finishes I am destroyed emotionally and physically. For twenty days I want nothing whatsoever to do with bike racing!
 

2014 Giro d'Italia map for stage 20
2014 Giro d'Italia profile for stage 20