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Live commentary by Laura Weislo
A couple of straightforward climbs early on in the stage apart, this is a pan-flat day's cycling that looks guaranteed for a sprint finish. In fact, it would be no surprise to see several of the sprinters pull out after this stage with so few opportunities for them in the last week, which only makes a sprint even more certain.
Firenze is a city of art, but in cycling it is known for the famed Gino Bartali, who comes from nearby Ponte a Ema. It is a stage dedicated to him and it will pass through his city.
Welcome back to Cyclingnews' live coverage of the Giro d'Italia. It was incredibly difficult to tear ourselves away from the beach in Lido di Camaiore this morning. It's such a gorgeous summery day and we really need to work on our tan... but alas, duty calls!
The riders also seem to be in a lazy summer afternoon mood. They got underway at 1:15PM local time and were in no real hurry to ride hard from the start. Seems that 60km time trial took a little sting out of everyone's legs yesterday!
Barloworld's Robbie Hunter said that he was hoping for an old-fashioned Giro stage today - 120km of "piano!" and then wind it up for the sprint. However, there were three men who weren't going to follow that plan today.
At km 12, Leonardo Scarselli (ISD), Mikhail Ignatiev (Team Katusha) and Björn Schröder (Team Milram) went on the attack and the peloton decided to let them have their day in the sun.