Commas, years and a mountain finish in stage 6
Stage 6: Grotte di Frasassi – Ascoli Piceno (S.Giacomo) 160 km
Thursday, May 13th, 12.35 CEST
The first MTF of the Giro comes in a rather short stage that packs a serious punch for being so early in the race. Starting from the famous Frasassi Caves, the stage will head south inland over some rolling terrain, including a few decent ramps but nothing serious. Then, at km 77, the road will go up to the first categorized climb of the day, a very serious one. Forca di Gualdo (GPM2, 10.4 km at 7.4%) is at the edge of being considered a GPM1, and features a very tough first section, featuring some double-digit gradients. Shame that it is so isolated in the middle of the stage. At the top there is a very short descent that includes the small climb to Castelluccio, slightly over 1 km at 7%, and that leads to the second climb of the day, Forca di Presta (GPM3, 4.8 km at 4.2%). This is unfortunately little more than a false flat, as the only hard ramp is the last 500m at 9%. A long, glorious descent will bring everyone to a 32 km long descending false flat, which would probably kill any attempt made in the previous climbs. This false flat ends directly into the town of Ascoli Piceno, which despite being marked as the finish location is still quite far from the finish, which will be up into the mountains again. S.Giacomo (GPM2, 15.5km at 6.1%) is quite a big MTF, the longest of this edition, in fact. It features a first 10 km section at 5.5% average, before ramping up for the last 5 km at 7.6%.
Forca di Gualdo: GPM2, 10.4 km at 7.4%
A deceptively hard climb, with 3.5 km at 9.2% in the first half.
Forca di Presta: GPM3, 4.8 km at 4.2%
Just a false flat with a tough final km. No official profile, so here is Cyclingcols.
S.Giacomo: GPM2, 15.5km at 6.1%
The longest MTF of this Giro, very easy for the first two thirds but quite demanding in the last.
What to expect:
The first MTF usually does not say much, but there is definitely enough terrain to put up a good show. I do not expect anything to happen before the final climb of course.
Grotte di Frasassi