MILAN – Next year, the Giro d’Italia will offer difficult climbs on Etna, Blockhaus, Mortirolo and Santa Cristina.
The six mountain stages of the Giro 2022 were unveiled on Wednesday as the race organizers continued their offbeat presentation of the course.
Breaking from tradition, race organizer RCS Sport has decided to unveil the details of the Giro in installments, starting with the seven stages best suited to sprinters on Monday, and the six hilly stages the next day.
Yet it is in the mountains that the winner of the Giro should make up his mind.
“With these six high mountain stages, it is clear that the 2022 Giro d’Italia will be another difficult one,” said reigning champion Egan Bernal. “The first uphill finish on Etna will be important and could really cut off from the general classification those who are not 100% fit for the first week of the race.
“Then there will be the mythical climbs like the Mortirolo, where great champions have written important chapters in the history of cycling.”
The Giro starts on May 6 with three stages in Hungary before the first day of rest for the transfer to Italy. Runners should face their first serious test on Stage Four, which will culminate with the ascent of Mount Etna.
There are three other finishes at the top of the mountain, including the Blockhaus, where the stage final features double-digit gradients along a series of hairpin bends leading to the line. There is a double assault from the Blockhouse in the 187 kilometer (116 mile) stage which includes almost 5,000 meters (16,404 feet) of climb.
There is even more climbing in the traditional wine stage of the Giro. The 200 kilometer (124 mile) stage from Salò to Aprica stretches for 5,400 meters (17,717 feet) as you climb Goletto di Cadino as well as Mortirolo and Santa Cristina.
Another stage that has received five stars – the highest difficulty rating – is the last mountain stage. Belluno’s 167 kilometer (104 mile) route includes the last uphill finish and the last three climbs of the race: the Passo San Pellegrino, the Passo Pordoi – which is the highlight of the race – and the last Passo Fedaia at the foot of the Marmolada glacier.
This should happen on the penultimate day of the Giro before what should be the arrival of a time trial in Verona on May 29th.
Details of the final will be announced on Thursday, when the full course is unveiled and RCS Sport will confirm precisely when all stages will take place.