Giro d'Italia 2022 Giro d'Italia, Stage 5: Catania – Messina 174 km (Wednesday, May 11th)

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-2691561

Stage 5: Catania – Messina 174 km
Wednesday, May 11th, 11:30 CET





Technical Overview:
If this stage gives you a huge sense of deja-vu, it is because it takes exactly the same route of the Giro 2020 stage 4. So let me quote myself from my analysis of that stage:
The last stage in Sicily is NOT the shortest of the whole race, and quite a weird one. Starting in Catania, the riders will go through rolling terrain for the first 50 km, mostly following the coastline. Just before the town of Taormina they will turn inland and cross the hills to reach the other side of the island. The climb they will face looks great on the official profile, but the scale is very inflated. Portella Mandrazzi (GPM3, 19.6 km at 4%) is just a Montevergine kind of climb: steady and very easy overall, but fairly long. It should be more than enough to drop the heavier guys if the peloton wants. The top however is at 99 km to go, with a long descent to come and an even longer flat stretch. The descent is 25 km long, very fast with wide roads. After that, the final 75 km are all flat, with the last 55 directly along the coast.
The only difference between this stage and that one is the last 37 km, from the original finish of Villafranca Tirrena to the new finish of Messina. This added stretch is mostly flat and all along the coast, so wind might be a factor.

Final km:



The Climbs:

Portella Mandrazzi
: GPM3, 19.6 km at 4%
Long and steady. The very definition of a tempo climb.



What to expect:
Breakaway, mass sprint or perhaps even echelons. Depends on the weather and on the aggressiveness of the riders.



The Strait of Messina
 
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Probably to early for a breakaway win. And the climbs looks doable for most sprinters (now that Mareczko is out). Is there a team with the strength/will to drop the worst climbers (Cav, Ewan) knowing that they would have to continue for nearly 100 km after the climb?
 
If they all finish together it’d be either Cav or Ewan. iv Cav or whoever gets dropped, the other team can’t push it hard and drop their own sprinter. The climbing is not there at his age but at the Tour he was dropping early too.
 
If they all finish together it’d be either Cav or Ewan. iv Cav or whoever gets dropped, the other team can’t push it hard and drop their own sprinter. The climbing is not there at his age but at the Tour he was dropping early too.
Someone like Cofidis, Wanty and Alpecin who all have sprinters/fast guys who can climb rather well should push the pace a bit. Today Cav looked pretty bad, so you might be able to drop him and have him and the team do lots of work to get back.
Ok, probably just wishful thinking...
 
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If Cav makes it over the first first part in the peloton or a little behind, it might be better long term for Demare to win. That way FDJ have more incentive to chase and help Quickstep and Lotto on 10, 12, and 13. Course if Cav can’t stay in the group then 10 and 12 most likely aren’t happening. Don’t want to win too many like at Tour then not get help by anyone else and lose more chances to win.
 
The climb is like Turchino. Ewan if he has no problem from crash in stage 1 can be in the first group and win.
Alpecin and Intermarche will go 100 % on climb to leave behind people like Cavendish (yersterday was very slow buy maybe was keeping his energy for today) Demare, Nizzolo etc.
 

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