Stage 17: Caravaggio – Vicenza Distance: 214km Highest point: 402m Category: Flat FAST MEN BACK IN THE FRAY Is this a classic Giro transition stage? Well, yes it is and no it isn’t. For sure, it’s as flat as can be for 180 kilometres but the final ramp up to Crosara represents a nasty little sting in the tail that is likely to mix things up. Once again, therefore, it’s a decent-sized ask for the pure sprinters to take it to the line but with 16 kilometres between the top and the finish, it ought to come back together. Regardless, by now those who haven’t delivered will be desperate, so the final half-hour or so will be compelling stuff.
Stefano Zanatta says: "They say the climb near the end isn’t actually that difficult, so it’ll most likely be full gas right from the bottom. It’s not easy to call it but if you have a strong team hammering it at the bottom, the gaps will surely come. Then it’s really a question of whether the right group forms on the descent. If three or four really exceptional riders go away and work together, they might just be in with a chance of making it to the finish."