Giro d'Italia 2020 Giro d'Italia: Stage-by-Stage Analysis

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it 100% is not unless someone turns up with unexpectedly incredible climbing form. There was talk here of them fielding Thomas-Bernal-Sosa-Dunbar-Geoghegan Hart. Instead they’ve put together a truly awesome assembly of rouleurs. They’ll murder the flyweight climbers if there’s a crosswind. They’ll be metronomic through the mountains while plenty of domestiques are there. But Thomas will be lucky to have one guy still with him after the real attacks start.

Now that I’ve said that I half expect all these big lumps to show up climbing like WVA.

Bernal presumably has no form or interest. Dunbar is injured. What’s up with Sosa?
Maybe they do it because they believe the level will be higher in La Vuelta (stronger teams). They need a bigger train there?
Sosa is maybe better suited to the Vuelta climbs?
 
I feel like most people are overestimating Yates by saying his big question mark is the third week and big mountain stages, while I think it has to be at least as big of a question mark that Yates has only had one season in his career where he looked like a gt winner before reverting back to his former self last year. And I don't actually think we have a good excuse for his performance in last years giro.

I'm just not nearly as convinced last year was the outlier, not 2018, as most people seem to be.
 
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I feel like most people are overestimating Yates by saying his big question mark is the third week and big mountain stages, while I think it has to be at least as big of a question mark that Yates has only had one season in his career where he looked like a gt winner before reverting back to his former self last year. And I don't actually think we have a good excuse for his performance in last years giro.

I'm just not nearly as convinced last year was the outlier, not 2018, as most people seem to be.

In the last two and a half seasons he’s won a GT, seven GT mountain stages, the queen stage of editions of Paris Nice, Tirreno, Catalunya and a bunch of other stage races. He is the most prolific winner of climbing stages in the peloton. His amazing climbing level isn’t a one season thing at all.

His frailties, inconsistency and an ability to suddenly and mysteriously have no form, are clear. So I don’t think anyone can really see him as a prohibitive favourite for any race. But I don’t see how someone with his climbing level, including very recently, who has held it together and won a GT before, can be seen as anything other than a serious contender. He’s entirely capable of winning the Giro, he’s entirely capable of losing an hour on a random mountain stage with no warning.
 
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In the last two and a half seasons he’s won a GT, seven GT mountain stages, the queen stage of editions of Paris Nice, Tirreno, Catalunya and a bunch of other stage races. He is the most prolific winner of climbing stages in the peloton. His amazing climbing level isn’t a one season thing at all.

His frailties, inconsistency and an ability to suddenly and mysteriously have no form, are clear. So I don’t think anyone can really see him as a prohibition favourite for any race. But I don’t see how someone with his climbing level, including very recently, who has held it together and won a GT before, can be seen as anything other than a serious contender. He’s entirely capable of winning the Giro, he’s entirely capable of losing an hour on a random mountain stage with no warning.
Well I didn't disagree about his 2018 season being great, did I? I only said that it looks to be a bit of an outlier and as you've given us this list of results let's take away those which fall into that season and look at what remains which is 2 GT stages and his recent Tirreno Adriatico win. Those two gt stages were both breakaway wins in last years Tour, so he wasn't riding against other gc riders. His Tirreno win, yeah that one was very impressive it has to be noted though that perfomring extremely well in one week stage races has always been a Yates thing (Simon as well as Adam). Simon won the queen stage in the Vuelta Andalucia and the ITT of Paris Nice before being mediocre in last years Giro. He won stages on WT level in Romandie and Paris Nice before being mediocre in the 2017 Tour. (As a comparison, Adam isn't far off his brothers record in that regard. In the last two and a half years he has also won a stage race plus 5 stages on the WT level)

Yates career is simply weird. Nobody expected him to become a guy to win gt's, then 2018 happened where he suddenly looked like the greatest gt rider in the world, before 2019 happened and everything went back to normal. I'm not at all convinced 2018 was indeed an outlier, but I'm not convinced of the opposite either. All I'm saying is that we can't talk about Yates as if the 2019 giro didn't happen and his 2018 gt's are the last ones we can judge him by. All I'm saying is that 2018 so far being a one off by him adds another questionmark to his name.
 
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Well I didn't disagree about his 2018 season being great, did I? I only said that it looks to be a bit of an outlier and as you've given us this list of results let's take away those which fall into that season and look at what remains which is 2 GT stages and his recent Tirreno Adriatico win. Those two gt stages were both breakaway wins in last years Tour, so he wasn't riding against other gc riders. His Tirreno win, yeah that one was very impressive it has to be noted though that perfomring extremely well in one week stage races has always been a Yates thing (Simon as well as Adam). Simon won the queen stage in the Vuelta Andalucia and the ITT of Paris Nice before being mediocre in last years Giro. He won stages on WT level in Romandie and Paris Nice before being mediocre in the 2017 Tour. (As a comparison, Adam isn't far off his brothers record in that regard. In the last two and a half years he has also won a stage race plus 5 stages on the WT level)

Yates career is simply weird. Nobody expected him to become a guy to win gt's, then 2018 happened where he suddenly looked like the greatest gt rider in the world, before 2019 happened and everything went back to normal. I'm not at all convinced 2018 was indeed an outlier, but I'm not convinced of the opposite either. All I'm saying is that we can't talk about Yates as if the 2019 giro didn't happen and his 2018 gt's are the last ones we can judge him by. All I'm saying is that 2018 so far being a one off by him adds another questionmark to his name.
Both stages did not include tough climbs, and he won both in a tactical/brave attacking manner, instead of being flat out strongest ( In this years Tirreno stage at Sassotetto he was simply the strongest for example, in a much tougher climb ). In the Romandie stage Porte was much stronger but Yates managed to stay with him after Porte catching him after his earlier attack. He stayed out after an attack in Paris-Nice as well, and in both examples he was not the strongest.
2017 Paris-Nice stage 6 profile
2017 Tour de Romandie stage 5 profile
 
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Well I didn't disagree about his 2018 season being great, did I? I only said that it looks to be a bit of an outlier and as you've given us this list of results let's take away those which fall into that season and look at what remains which is 2 GT stages and his recent Tirreno Adriatico win. Those two gt stages were both breakaway wins in last years Tour, so he wasn't riding against other gc riders. His Tirreno win, yeah that one was very impressive it has to be noted though that perfomring extremely well in one week stage races has always been a Yates thing (Simon as well as Adam). Simon won the queen stage in the Vuelta Andalucia and the ITT of Paris Nice before being mediocre in last years Giro. He won stages on WT level in Romandie and Paris Nice before being mediocre in the 2017 Tour. (As a comparison, Adam isn't far off his brothers record in that regard. In the last two and a half years he has also won a stage race plus 5 stages on the WT level)

Yates career is simply weird. Nobody expected him to become a guy to win gt's, then 2018 happened where he suddenly looked like the greatest gt rider in the world, before 2019 happened and everything went back to normal. I'm not at all convinced 2018 was indeed an outlier, but I'm not convinced of the opposite either. All I'm saying is that we can't talk about Yates as if the 2019 giro didn't happen and his 2018 gt's are the last ones we can judge him by. All I'm saying is that 2018 so far being a one off by him adds another questionmark to his name.
I think Yates had a few flashes in 2019 that are a bit hard to ignore that suggest to me he wasn't back to square 2017 and before. Hazallanas, Giro prologue. Then lighting up Tirreno this year.

If the 2018 Giro had been the only time Yates had ridden a GT like that I woudl be more sceptical, but he won the Vuelta that year as well, and he's only bottled one GT since then. In the subsequent Tour he went for stages and won 2.
 
I think Yates had a few flashes in 2019 that are a bit hard to ignore that suggest to me he wasn't back to square 2017 and before. Hazallanas, Giro prologue. Then lighting up Tirreno this year.

If the 2018 Giro had been the only time Yates had ridden a GT like that I woudl be more sceptical, but he won the Vuelta that year as well, and he's only bottled one GT since then. In the subsequent Tour he went for stages and won 2.
Then again even in the 2018 Vuelta Yates didn't actually look as impressive as in the 2018 giro. In the 2018 giro he was simply climbing a level above everyone else whenever the road went upwards until stage 18. In the 2018 Vuelta he wasn't. He was actually dropped quite regularly but was also the only one who showed consistent shape over three weeks. (Almost ironic considering how he lost the giro)

To me that's just another indication that his 2018 Giro shape might have been a one off. His 2018 Vuelta shape, maybe not so much. But then again I don't actually think his 2018 Vuelta shape would be enough to win this giro.

And you know, it's not actually that rare for one off seasons or races like that to happen. Gilbert was great throughout most of his career, but his 2011 dominance was a one off. Nibali has won a lot through the years, but his 2014 Tour was on a completely different level compared to any other race he has ever ridden.
 
I was just about to post that a stage on October 22 over the Stelvio has quite a lot of positive thinking in it...

Still some time to go, but I wouldn't be surprised if the Stelvio needs to be skipped, due to bad weather/snow.

Let's wait and see.
I don’t think it’s that different from scheduling the Stelvio in May/June. On average it’s colder, but according to the climate sites I checked, there is a fair amount less precipitation in that region in Oct Than in May or June. Plus there’s very little possibility of avalanche closing roads because even it does snow there’s not enough snowpack for significant avalanches. Seems like the biggest risk would be wet roads that get icy the night before a stage. I’m not saying the riders will be comfortable in late-October conditions, but I don’t think the risk of cancelling climbs is any greater than springtime.
 
Sep 29, 2020
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The preview here seems to be over-egging a lot of the climbs on the profiles. I expect a lot more of the stages to be sprints than the original poster suggests...
 
Regarding the plan B for the two big stages:

- for stage 18 it seems the plan B would be doing Tonale - Aprica - Mortirolo (unclear which side - a local article even implied the one from Trivigno, never used...), then up the valley until Bormio and the final climb.

- for stage 20 today a local article claimed that the plan B is to have Finestre, and that RCS is already seriously considering it, possibly because it needs some minor roadworks to be passable, so they need to commit asap.

Needless to say, stage 20 has the huge problem of passing through another country, with all the administrative issues that may happen in case of the necessity of clearing snow, AND the fact that any plan B that doesn't include Finestre would look like a medium mountain stage.
 

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