Two years after the Tour de France’s epic stage finish on the Galibier in the 2011 race, Italian newspaper Tuttosport claims that the Giro d’Italia will have a summit finish on the same legendary mountain.
According to the report, the start is already planned for Naples, in the south of Italy, with either a team time trial in the city or an individual time trial, followed by a stage taking the race further down Italy’s western coastline.
Tuttosport then claims that the next leg will take the Giro across to Puglia on the south-eastern corner, before heading up to Vincenzo (the birthplace of Tullio Campagnolo, founder of the company of the same name, in the 30th anniversary of his death) and Longarone in the Dolomites in the far north-east. En route, a brief incursion to Florence mid-way up the peninsula with some finishing laps around the 2013 world championships circuit is also planned.
Of the mythical climbs of the Giro, the Gavia is expected to feature, and possibly the Tre Cime di Lavaredo, well known for its importance in Eddy Merckx’s rise to power - he took the lead here in 1968, en route to becoming its greatest ever star - and also being for where he was dropped by Spain’s Jose Manuel Fuente in 1974.
However, the grand finale will - if confirmed - surely be the most spectacular finish of all: the Galibier. Tuttosport notes that although Alpe D’Huez was also considered, the Galibier’s relative proximity to Italy and the fact that the Tour was able to put on a stage finish there in 2011 have both played a part in convincing the organisation. However, a definitive decision has yet to be made.
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Alasdair Fotheringham has been reporting on cycling since 1991. He has covered every Tour de France since 1992 as well as numerous other bike races of all shapes and sizes, ranging from the Olympic Games in 2008 to the now sadly defunct Subida a Urkiola hill climb in Spain. Apart from working for Cyclingnews.com, he is also the cycling correspondent for The Independent and The Independent on Sunday.
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