Giro d'Italia 2020, stage 9: San Salvo – Roccaraso 208 km

Finishing slightly higher than in 2016 @Eshnar?

Is it attack-and-blow-up time for Nibbles?

Stage 9: San Salvo – Roccaraso 208 km
Sunday, October 11th, 10:20 CEST




Technical Overview:

The second Sunday of the race offers an interesting medium mountain stage with uphill finish. From the town of San Salvo, on the Adriatic coast, the peloton will head towards the Appennines and after 60 km they won’t see a single flat stretch anymore. The first notable point of the race is the intermediate sprint in Guardiagrele (no, they won’t ride the wall of 2014), which is on top of a small climb of around 7 km at 4-5%. After it the riders will move along the side of the Maiella massif, and then climb the first GPM of the day, Passo Lanciano (GPM1, 12.7 km at 6.9%). This is possibly its easiest side, but even so it’s a pretty hard climb. The descent is long and extremely fast, with lots of straights and very few curves. Once the peloton reaches the bottom, they will start climbing immediately once again, all the way up to the Passo San Leonardo (GPM2, 13.8 km 4.5%), whose official numbers don’t include the first part, which has comparable numbers to the second and is divided from it by a very short descent. If we include everything from Scafa to the top, we would get 37.6 km at 3.1%. It doesn’t have hard ramps, but it’s still a very long climb. Yet another descent (very easy) will bring everyone to the following climb, Bosco di S.Antonio (GPM2, 9.9 km at 5%), a very regular climb that tops at 27 km to go. Of those, 17 are on varied terrain on a plateau, which includes the very late second intermediate sprint in Rivisondoli. After reaching the town of Roccaraso, the riders will still face the last climb to Rifugio Aremogna (GPM1, 9.6 km at 5.7%), another easy climb, but with a steep final ramp maxing at 12%.



The Climbs:
Passo Lanciano: GPM1, 12.7 km at 6.9%

A common sight in the Giro, this climb is part of the mighty Blockhaus, one of the hardest climbs of the Appennines. The last time the Giro used it from this side it was 2009, in a ridiculously short stage that finished at Blockhaus.


Passo San Leonardo: GPM2, 13.8 km 4.5%
Long, slow and steady. It only has one serious climb in the first section. A huge chunk is missing from the official profile, although its numbers are not impressive either.


Bosco di S.Antonio: GPM2, 9.9 km at 5%
Nice and easy. It shouldn’t do damage unless the pace is very high.

Rifugio Aremogna: GPM1, 9.6 km at 5.7%
Last time the Giro arrived here it was 2016. It’s a very easy climb with a hard final ramp, with 1 km at almost 10% average.


What to expect:
A grueling stage that should be breakaway-friendly, without much action from the GC guys before the final uphill sprint. Perhaps some non-favourites could attack on the penultimate climb to try to gain significant time if the pace of the peloton is low. Tomorrow is a rest day after all, so someone might feel like trying something.


Roccaraso
 
Yeah, no way something happens before the final two kilometres except if a big name cracks. It's really a pity. Roccaraso is one of the worst places to finish a mountain stage yet it's unfortunately one of the few climbs in this part of Italy willing to pay for stages. A stage this hard, with so much climbing deserves a finishing climb better than this.
 
Not difficult enough for big gaps. I think guys like Fuglsang, Bilbao and maybe even Almeida will be able to gain 10-20s at best. In 2016 when Nibali blew up he only lost 24s to the best GC guys (Fuglsang). Less than 10s compared to guys like Valverde, Majka or Uran. Depending on the pace on the early climbs even Ulissi could have a chance.
On the other hand. It´s 2020 and the it´s october. One of the favorites is probably dropped on the Passo Lanciano and we will see total carnage for the rest of the stage.
 
Break will take this as I don't know who from the GC guys would make their team work for this. I expect De Gendt and Ganna in the break, perhaps each with a Spanish or Columbian backpack on the final climb. If a big engine is to win, they'd have to have enough of an advantage over the pocket climbers to survive the final km.
 
Reactions: richwallone
I'm hoping a combination of these factors will make the stage more entertaining than expected:

  1. Ninth day of consecutive racing, hopefully some tired legs
  2. Bad weather (not certain)
  3. Fear that the Giro will be shortened or stages cancelled
  4. Ciccone on home roads
  5. Rest day on Monday
+weaker teams

but having taken a look at the GC, I don't really believe an ambush will happen
 
Almeida gaining time seems extremely unlikely, every time they accelerated uphill he struggled, more likely he loses some seconds.
Anyway I suspect a breakaway could take it, or maybe Trek makes the race, we'll see.
 
Almeida has been doing great. Tomorrow is a big test though. Even if he survives to still hold on to the lead going into the second week, the rest of this race should become more and more difficult for him to defend himself. His team cant help much in the high mountains and he should be starting to fade a bit compared to some of the more experienced riders.

If he can manage a top 10 in the end. He has done great in his first GT, I would say.
 
Reactions: Lexman
We don’t have the exact climb details for the Cat 2 that tops out at KM 181.5 but the roughly 550 m. Climb in 10k makes it steeper than the previous Cat 2 (Leonardo). With less than 30k to go of rolling and climbing after that—on top of the fact that GC guys had a rest day today and a rest day Monday—doesn’t one of the GC guys have enough ambition to put in an attack there? I mean, I know what the answer will be here, but it’s still worth asking!
 
We don’t have the exact climb details for the Cat 2 that tops out at KM 181.5 but the roughly 550 m. Climb in 10k makes it steeper than the previous Cat 2 (Leonardo). With less than 30k to go of rolling and climbing after that—on top of the fact that GC guys had a rest day today and a rest day Monday—doesn’t one of the GC guys have enough ambition to put in an attack there? I mean, I know what the answer will be here, but it’s still worth asking!
Very doubtful. It's not hard enough to really shed all the domestiques. It's similar to but less hard than Gran Sasso in 2018. With strong teams a stage like this would be the worst, but I still don't get my hopes up. I'm pretty sure I was hyped about this in the stage by stage thread, but I was young and foolish a few weeks ago
 
Sooo many sporting events tomorrow.
French GP MotoGP at Le Mans
Eifel GP Formula 1 at Nurburgring
Gent-Wevelgem
Paris-Tours
Giro d'Italia Stage 9
Roland Garros Men's Finals

I don't know which one to watch. I plan to watch MotoGP than check the others from time to time. MotoGP has been amazing this season with some very close races and a great title fight. Hopefully another great race at Le Mans.
 
The 4 stages after this are survivable to an able body.

I'm a QS DS I'm saying whatever you do, in the current climate, don't get cute giving up the jersey to some innocuous randomer.

But as in the past few years absurd things seem to be happening with increasing regularity, his could be Joe Dombroski's big chance to win a grand tour.
 

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