Route: The first summit finish of the race, although not one that will have the main contenders quaking. The climb to San Martino has its tough sections, but overall it's not a tough ascent on the main road up the Cismon valley. Time gaps won't be too big here; the finish could be contested by quite a large group.
Local hero: If Ivan Basso is going to ride off with the maglia rosa for a second time, he's likely to be leaning heavily on Manuel Quinziato. A time trial specialist, the Bolzano man is very strong and versatile and is sure to be allocated plenty of hardcore domestique work on stages like this.
Procycling's top tip: No one could touch Emanuele Sella on stages like these last year, but he's now sidelined by a doping ban that contributed to his CSF Navigare team's non-selection this year. If a sizeable group comes to the finish, 2000 champion Stefano Garzelli is a good bet in an uphill sprint.
Savio speaks: San Martino di Castrozza is the first stage in the mountains - I Dolomiti. Here we will get the idea of who is not up to the task of winning the 2009 Giro d'Italia. Gilberto Simoni will try to stay with the front men.