Giro d'Italia 2022 Giro d'Italia, Stage 20: Belluno – Marmolada 168 km (Saturday, May 28th)

From @Eshnar's excellent 2022 Giro d'Italia: Stage-by-stage Analysis thread: https://forum.cyclingnews.com/threads/2022-giro-ditalia-stage-by-stage-analysis.37819/#post-2691579

Stage 20: Belluno – Marmolada 168 km
Saturday, May 28th, 12:15 CET





Technical Overview:
The last chance for the climbers is a hard MTF on one of the prettiest passes of Giro’s history. Starting from the town of Belluno, just at the foot of the Dolomites, this stage will offer the first difficulty already after just 18 km, with the uncategorized climb of S.Gregorio nelle Alpi (2.7 km at 7.5%), where the breakaway of the day will likely leave the peloton. A quick descent (with some false flat in the middle) will bring the riders back to the valley, where they will slowly enter the mountains. The next climb comes after 33 km of ascending false flat, and it is a big one. Passo S.Pellegrino (GPM1, 18.5 km at 6.2%) is a long and hard climb, very irregular in the first half and then just consistently steep in the second. A 12 km straightforward descent will let the peloton enter the Val di Fassa, a valley that they will have to ascend for 17 km all the way to the end and to the foot of the next climb, the Cima Coppi of this edition. The famous Passo Pordoi (Cima Coppi, 11.8 km at 6.8%) with its 2239m above sea level is once again the highest point of the race, as it tends to happen often. With all his hairpins, it is not a particularly tough climb, and its main difficulty will simply be the altitude. The descent is very technical and leads to a false flat section that ends with a ramp of 1.5 km at 6.5% before plunging down again for another 10 km descent that ends in the town of Caprile, where the final climb of the day will begin. The mythical Marmolada, also known as Passo Fedaia (GPM1, 14 km at 7.6%), is renowned for its magnificent views and the beautiful canyon at the bottom, which is still closed due to the catastrophic floods of a few years ago. The riders will race on the modern road that passes above it, so at least we will see it. The other main feature of this climb is its terrible straight of 3 km at 12%, beginning at 5 km to go, that will probably decide the stage and perhaps the whole Giro.

Final km:



The Climbs:

Passo S.Pellegrino
: GPM1, 18.5 km at 6.2%
A great climb, with increasingly high gradients all the way to the top.



Passo Pordoi: Cima Coppi, 11.8 km at 6.8%
It was supposed to be the Cima Coppi last year, but the riders didn’t feel like it. Let’s see if this time it works. I’m gonna quote myself from last year:
The most frequent Cima Coppi of all (13 times out of 35 total passages), by virtue of being the highest peak in an area very often traversed by the Giro. Besides the (not even that crazy) altitude, it is quite an unassuming climb, with steady gradients but with a stunning scenery at the top. It was featured in the Giro for the first time in 1940, with Gino Bartali himself going first over the top.


Passo Fedaia: GPM1, 14 km at 7.6%
Quote from last year:
It has been 1000 years… well, 10 11, but still too many. It is since the stage to Gardeccia 2011 that Fedaia (also known as Marmolada) has not been featured in the Giro. Meanwhile, the Canyon of Sottoguda has been wrecked by a flood, and who knows when it will be ready again to host a race. Canyon or not, this climb has almost always seen some great action in the past. This year it will be unlikely, but we can still hope. This will be the 15th time the Giro passes here, the first time being in 1975.


What to expect:
The final battle for the GC. Hard to think anyone will attack before the final climb though. We need someone to be really desperate.


Serrai di Sottoguda
 
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95/5 for the break. Hopefully with a lot of older statesmen represented: Bala, Pozzo, even the Shark if possible. The leading trio does not even notice him anyway.

The breakaway has taken most mountain stages in this Giro.

Hindley, Carapaz and Landa to s/t again. The short time trial will produce much bigger gaps than this monster stage.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
I think this is the first Giro ever where I'll be glad it's over. A poor route, half the favourites abandoning and a complete lack of panache of the three surviving GC riders have turned this into an awful race in spite of (or thanks to) the gaps being small, it's basically been the 2017 Tour with one really well-designed and raced mid-mountain stage thrown in. Don't even feel emotionally invested in who ends up winning, none of them have done anything at all to win my support, whether it's Richard 'let's have the break win everything' Carapaz, Jai 'rely exclusively on your sprint and be shocked at only coming second' Hindley, or Mikel 'my "attacks" are actually me riding tempo for Carapaz and Hindley' Landa.
 
95/5 for the break. Hopefully with a lot of older statesmen represented: Bala, Pozzo, even the Shark if possible. The leading trio does not even notice him anyway.

The breakaway has taken most mountain stages in this Giro.

Hindley, Carapaz and Landa to s/t again. The short time trial will produce much bigger gaps than this monster stage.
They will never let Nibali in the break. Why would they give him 4 minutes and the subsequent opportunity to steal the Giro in the time trial?
 

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