Giro d'Italia 2020: Stage 10 preview

Stage 10: Lanciano to Tortoreto Lido

Date: October 13, 2020 

Distance: 177km 

Stage start: 11:55am CEST

Stage type: Hilly

The action resumes following the first rest day with a stage that has the profile of a Flanders Classic. There are short, sharp climbs studded throughout the course, a handful of them in the closing 40km, which should make for a very intriguing finale.

The stage gets under way in Lanciano, dropping to the Adriatic coast and then heading north towards Pescara. Rather than follow the direct route through this port, the route turns inland to climb to Chieti, hometown of Trek-Segafredo climber Giulio Ciccone, last year’s winner of the mountains competition. From there, it bumps back down to the sea and heads north towards the finish town of Tortoreto Lido, passing through the first intermediate sprint just beforehand.

The punchy 40km finale begins soon after this sprint, the route jagging inland to climb into the old town of Tortoreto, the gradient touching a maximum of 18 per cent. From there, it tumbles back to the Adriatic once again, tracking northwards again to Martinsicuro, where the riders will turn away from the sea to take consecutive “walls”. The first, at Colonnella, averages 10 per cent gradient, and at one point is almost twice as steep as that. The second, at Controguerra, rears up to 24 per cent and has what’s perhaps the most oddly-placed intermediate sprint of the race at its crest.

From here, the route returns to Tortoreto, but this time from the slightly steeper northern approach, then swings through the town to climb back into it from the southern side a second time. Topping it, the riders will have 10km to the finish, the first 3km stretch downhill towards the coast, the last 7km flat into the finish.

These hills will probably see off most of the sprinters, but those who thrive in the Classics, such as Arnaud Démare, Peter Sagan and Michael Matthews, should be able to hang at the front and contest the honours for a thrilling stage.

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