The route of stage 12 of the Giro d’Italia has been altered as the coastal road through the spectacular Cinque Terre remains unusable following the severe landslides which struck the area on October 25 last year.
The stage, which runs from Seravezza to Sestri Levante, was originally slated to take in the Cinque Terre after passing through La Spezia, but local authorities have confirmed that the road from La Spezia to Levanto will not be fit for action on May 17.
Instead of winding over the third category climb of Biasa en route to the coast, therefore, the race will stick to an inland route on exiting La Spezia and will take in the climb of La Foce (Cat. 4). The peloton will rejoin the original route shortly before the climb of Valico Guaitarola (Cat. 3), while the rolling finale over the Valico la Mola and Tassani climbs into Sestri Levante remains unchanged. The stage will now total 155km rather than the original 162.
A statement from organisers RCS Sport said that the race “had hoped to follow the planned route as a sign of solidarity with the local people who have suffered so much. The new stage route visits much of the area hit by the landslides but only touches the Cinque Terre.”
Liguria and coastal areas of northern Tuscany were the zones worst-affected by the torrential rain that struck northern Italy on October 25 last, triggering wide scale flooding and landslides.
On the day that the race passes through the area, a delegation from RCS Sport will re-open a children’s playground in Brugnato, rebuilt using funds raised by a number of charity events run by the race organisers.
The roads of the Cinque Terre last featured at the Giro during the centenary edition in 2009, when eventual winner Denis Menchov powered to victory in a 60 kilometre time trial.
In its statement on Wednesday, RCS promised that the Giro would return to the area “in the near future.”