GIRO’16: Rest Day #1
First rest day of Giro d’Italia, with transfer from Netherlands to Italy
The peloton of the 99th Giro d’Italia have made their way from Amsterdam, The Netherlands, to the airport at Lamezia Terme in the far south of Italy, and then Catanzaro, the start town for Stage 4 tomorrow.
Two cargo flights carried the team equipment, departing Amsterdam at 4am with 10 tons of bicycles and other materials with a volume of 180m3. Race organisers, sponsors and part of the media corp boarded a 212-seating A321 from flyNiki at 8.40am, followed at 9am by a A330-300 operated by Thomas Cook with 396 people aboard, including riders and team staff.
At noon, the Giro d’Italia riders and entourage were able to relax in Calabria for a half-day of rest after the transfer, with fresh memories of the Grande Partenza’s great success and the enormous popular response to the likes of Tom Dumoulin (Team Giant-Alpecin), Maarten Tjallingii (Team Lotto NL – Jumbo) and Marcel Kittel (Etixx – Quick-Step).
As the Giro enters its second phase, during which it will travel the Italian peninsular from south to north, Kittel wears the Maglia Rosa. He leads Dumoulin by 9″ and Costa Rica’s Andrey Amador (Movistar Team) by 15″.
Maglia Rosa (pink), General Classification, sponsored by Enel – Marcel Kittel (Etixx – Quick-Step)
Maglia Rossa (red), Sprints Classification, sponsored by Algida – Marcel Kittel (Etixx – Quick-Step)
Maglia Azzurra (blue), King of the Mountains Classification, sponsored by Banca Mediolanum – Maarten Tjallingii (Team Lotto NL – Jumbo)
Maglia Bianca (white), Young Rider Classification, sponsored by Eurospin – Tobias Ludvigsson (Team Giant – Alpecin)
1 – Marcel Kittel (Etixx – Quick-Step)
2 – Tom Dumoulin (Team Giant – Alpecin) at 9″
3 – Andrey Amador (Movistar Team) at 15″
Stage 4 – CATANZARO – PRAIA A MARE – 200km
The stage is wavy, but the first 120km are relatively straightforward. The route winds its way along wide fast-flow roads, which feature a few tunnels. Past Cetraro Marina, the route takes in the Bonifati climb and dives into the ss. 18 trunk road, then leaves it to tackle the second categorised climb of the day in San Pietro (with high gradients along the first half). The route grows harder after the intermediate sprint in Scalea, with many climbs and descents, and twists and turns that lead into the final 10km.
The final kilometres are rather bumpy. With 10km remaining to the finish, the route takes in the very steep Via del Fortino climb (with ramps topping out at 18%), and then drops into Praia on wide and curving roads that pose no real challenge. Beware of two tunnels in the first part of the descent (the least steep). The home straight is 2,500m long, on a 7.5m wide asphalt road, curving just slightly, 40m before the finish.
POINTS OF INTEREST
CATANZARO – km 0
Catanzaro lies along the isthmus of Catanzaro, the narrowest strip of land in Italy, between the Tyrrhenian and the Ionian Seas, and overlooks the Gulf of Squillace. The oldest part of the town, with the cathedral and many historic buildings, is perched on three hills. The impressive one-arch reinforced concrete bridge spanning the Fiumarella stream has been the symbol of the city since 1962. It improves the connection between the “Strada dei Due Mari” trunk road, the old town centre and the Sila plateau.
Catanzaro was the hometown of Renato Dulbecco (1914-2012), an Italian biologist, doctor and Nobel prize winner.
The city has already hosted numerous Giro d’Italia stage finishes. In 1930, victory went to Luigi Marchisio; in 1954 to Nino Defilippis; in 1965 to Belgian rider Frans Brand; in 1972 to Gosta Petterson, in 1996 to Frenchman Hervé Pascal and, finally, to Mark Cavendish in Catanzaro Lido in 2008.
LAMEZIA TERME – km 32
The route heads towards the Tyrrhenian Sea, across the plains, reaching Lamezia Terme. The large, densely populated city is the site of the region’s major airport.
MARINELLA (intermediate sprint) – km 35
CAMPORA SAN GIOVANNI – km 57 and AMANTEA – km 65
Next on the stage course are Campora San Giovanni (marking the entrance into province of Cosenza) and Amantea.
PAOLA junction– km 91
The route runs along the coastal road all the way to Paola, the birthplace of Saint Francis of Paola (1416- 1507), who is remembered by a large sanctuary that has become a popular destination for religious tourism. The town centre expands mainly on the hillside area and offers engaging sights, such as the old Castle.
GUARDIA PIEMONTESE MARINA (feed zone) – km 104
Next are Guardia Piemontese Marina (feed zone) and Acquappesa Marina, which recently hosted Giro d’Italia stage finishes by the Terme Luigiane resort.
BONIFATI (KOM) – km 126
Past Cetraro Marina, the route takes in the short Bonifati climb (KOM, 3rd category).
DIAMANTE – km 145
The city of Diamante, lying in the Costiera dei Cedri (“the citron coast”), is decorated with wall paintings. Local delicacies include seafood specialties and the world-famous Calabrian chilli pepper.
SAN PIETRO (KOM) – km 151
The route climbs up towards San Pietro (KOM, 3rd category) and then drops into Cirella, offering a view of the island of the same name. Just north of the KOM in San Pietro, the race rolls past the town of Maierà, distinctive because of its dramatic relationship with Grisolia. The two towns are just 900 metres apart in a straight line, but separated by a deep ravine making their connection by road is longer than 10 km.
SCALEA (intermediate sprint) – km 175
Scalea (intermediate sprint) old town overlooks the wide beaches in the city’s modern sector, followed by San Nicola Arcella, with its lovely rocky bay.
PRAIA A MARE – km 200
Praia a Mare is a lovely seaside town on the upper Tyrrhenian coast of Cosenza province, with around 60 beach resorts. The island of Dino lies opposite Capo dell’Arena. It has unique natural features such as caves – some under water – and many cliffs along the coastline. The town is home to a number of religious and military buildings, such as the Tower of Fiuzzi, which reflect its long history. Praia a Mare makes its debut as Giro d’Italia stage city.
TV coverage of the 99th Giro d’Italia will reach all four corners of the world: 184 countries will see the Corsa Rosa on 29 different networks, 24 of them live.
RAI – Radio Televisione Italiana, the longstanding host broadcaster, provides extensive coverage of the Corsa Rosa. The action is live in three separate programmes: “Prima diretta” (“Pre-Live”) on Rai Sport 1, “Giro in diretta” (“Giro Live”) at 15:10 – 16:15 in simulcast on Rai 3 and Rai HD, and “Giro all’arrivo” (“Giro on the Finish Line”), with the last hour of racing until 17:15. The traditional post-race analysis programme “Processo alla Tappa” (“The Stage on Trial”) ends at 18:00.
When the race reaches Italy, the stage start will be covered in Rai Sport 1’s “Giro Mattina” (“Giro Morning”), showing the signing in ceremony, with interviews, the start of racing, and local colour. The strand “Journey through the Italy of the Giro d’Italia” will show historical and cultural anecdotes and features.
For viewers unable to watch the stage live in the afternoon, the evening show TGiro (“Giro Bulletin”) will tell the story of the day’s racing from 20:00 on Rai Sport 1, followed by Giro Notte (“Late Night Giro”), with 90’ of stage highlights from 22:45 on Rai Sport 2. The Corsa Rosa will be streamed on the website www.rai.tv.
AROUND THE WORLD
In Italy the Giro can also be seen live on Eurosport, broadcasting to 53 countries across Europe from 14:15, with race commentary in 19 languages.
In France, the stages are live exclusively on beINSports, with reports and features from the scene.
The Dutch public broadcaster NOS is showing three hours of live racing of the first three stages in the Netherlands, as well as the final 90 minutes of the weekend stages in Italy, plus daily highlights of every stage.
Free to air race coverage is live in Flemish via VRT, in Danish on TV2 Denmark, in Switzerland via SRG SSR, in Spain via Teledeporte and EITB and in Kazakhstan, in highlights, on Kaz Sports.
The Corsa Rosa is live in Latin America on ESPN, with Portuguese commentary in Brazil, English commentary in the Caribbean and Spanish across the rest of South America. Colombian fans have a wide range of options, with live coverage on RCN and Señal Colombia. TDN is showing the race live in Mexico and Central America. beIN Sports is covering the Giro in the United States of America and RDS is providing French-language coverage in Canada.
The Giro d’Italia is also on the small screen in the Middle East and North Africa thanks to live coverage on beIN Sports, while in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa the Giro is on the Supersport channels.
In Asia, the Corsa Rosa in available in 16 countries via Eurosport Asia Pacific; J Sports is covering the race live and exclusive in Japan. LeTV is doing the same in China.
Race highlights are on FPT Telecom in Vietnam, while the Thai public can enjoy the key parts of the stage on both True Visions and NOW26.
The huge interest that Australia has shown in the Giro continues in 2016: SBS is showing all 21 stage live, while Fox Sports is showing highlights. In New Zealand, Sky is showing the race live and in highlights.
Finally, the Corsa Rosa is being shown worldwide via SNTV – Sports News Television and Sport24, the 24 hour sports channel for airline and cruise ship passengers.
PHOTO CREDIT: ANSA – PERI / DI MEO / ZENNARO