Four summit finishes for the 107th edition of the race where our team has won 29 stages and nine distinctive jerseys since 2005.

The season’s first Grand Tour, taking place between 4-26 May, will start from Venaria Reale – just like in 2011 – comprise two individual time trials (one in Perugia and the other close to Lake Garda), five demanding mountain stages and a total of 43 000 vertical meters before concluding in Rome, the Eternal City which will host the finish for only the sixth time in history.

At a quick glance, it’s clear that next year brings shorter stages and less climbing, but this doesn’t mean the riders going for the general classification and the iconic maglia rosa will have an easy task ahead.

Apart from the two stages against the clock, some gravel roads from Strade Bianche, Santuario di Oropa, the return of the famous Sappada, Passo dello Stelvio (Cima Coppi at 2758 meters) and a double ascent of the gruelling Monte Grappa on the penultimate day of the whole thing promise to add plenty of salt and pepper to the Corsa Rosa, which will cover a total of 3321 kilometers.

“There are some changes to what we were used to in the past years, but make no mistake, this is a very hard Giro d’Italia. On surface, it looks like it’s going to be mainly about the mountain top finishes and the two stages against the clock, but there are many traps and tough hurdles hidden in these three weeks, which will make for a tough and unpredictable edition of the race”, said Soudal Quick-Step’s Mattia Cattaneo – who has five participations in Il Giro since turning pro – after attending the route presentation.


Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele / Getty Images

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