Saturday 15 May 2010

Giro d'Italia Stage 7: Epic!

I have always enjoyed the Giro d'Italia not because it is the Cool Stage Race, as BikeSnobNYC suggests, but because it not only has great scenery but lots of drama, often far more than you will find in the more exalted Tour de France.  Today's Stage 7, a flattish stage compared to what is to come, was expected to provide some interest as the race travelled some of the Strade Biance, the white gravel roads of Tuscany celebrated in l'Eroica for amateurs in October and the Monte Paschi in Spring for professionals.  Traditional stage racers, compared to Classics specialists, were considered to be at a disadvantage when it came to riding non-asphalted roads but there were lots of surprises brought on by the heavy rain today.

It has been a long time since Paris-Roubaix was run in wretched weather--2001 to be exact, when Servais Knaven crossed the finish line covered in mud.  The Monte Paschi race is seen as Italy's answer to Paris-Roubaix and it did not disappoint today.  I'm just glad I don't have to clean any of those bikes.

The best place to watch the Giro live is at the Gazzetta della Sport itself, which runs video here.  Not only do you get a live feed (and the chance to practice your Italian!), but there is a nice graphic below the video showing the position of escape groups in relation to the peleton.  Nice work, Gazzetta.


Groover said...

And aren't those narrow streets in the last kilometer absolutely gorgeous? I'd love to go and ride in Italy, not last because of the great recovery food. :-) Go Cadel!

Sprocketboy said...

The last part through the streets of Montalcino was marvellous indeed. This is is the kind of thing that makes bike racing so great. And Cadel's victory was well-earned.

Donald said...

I read about the stage and saw the pics... unreal! I missed the broadcast so I'm so glad to see you posted it. But when I started to watch it says it's been pulled by the user. I'll have to search YouTube to see if there's another version.

Sprocketboy said...

I have put up another version, but it is not as nicely muddy as the first video was!