The penultimate stage of the 88th Giro d'Italia celebrates the Olympic Valleys of Sestrieres that will host the 2006 Winter Olympics and the riders who take the start will celebrate a world of pain. Starting in Savigliano south of Torino, Stage 19 makes a long, gradual 45km climb up to Sestrieres after 101km. After a long descent to Susa, the final 45km of this stage is simply brutal. The never-before used climb of the Colle della Finestre is a 18.5km monster, with an average gradient of 9.2%. Said to be harder than the Passo Gavia, the final 7.9km of Finestre is on a gravel "strada bianca" that will make the the climb even more difficult. Once over the Finestre, there's another descent and the final 12km climb back up to Sestrieres.
Latest on Cyclingnews
Viviani keeps Milan-San Remo, Tour de France and Giro d'Italia as targets in revised calendar'The objective remains the finish line on the Via Roma'
eBay Finds: Signed Marcel Kittel Uvex Race 5 helmetSouvenir for fans of retired German sprinter
Commuter bikes: What are the differences and how to choose the best bike for youFlat bar road bike? Hybrid? Touring bike? Cargo bike? Commuter bikes come in all forms, here are the differences
Bernal could force Chris Froome to consider Ineos exit, says Contador'It's unthinkable to me that he would change teams mid-season' says Spaniard