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91st Giro d'Italia - Route, Teams & History
By Staff
Date: 5/9/2008
91st Giro d'Italia - Route, Teams & History

Giro d'Italia 2008 - Route, Teams & History
The Parcours of the 91rst Corsa Rosa. A beautiful and challenging course which should lead to an open and exciting race. From Palermo to Milan an epic spectacle that will select a worthy Victor.  Stages, Map, Stage Commentary and Fabio's Historical Database Updated

The 91rst edition of the Giro d'Italia will start in Palermo, Sicily on May 10th. The race will start with a team time trial and finish with an unusual individual time trial into Milano on June 1 after 21 stages, and after covering a good 3424.8 kilometres.

The organisers have once again mapped out a challenging course with something for all the specialists whether a sprinter, time trialist or climber - that will test the riders, teams and machines - and entertain the fans in another spectacle of the sport.

2008 Giro d'Italia Map & Route
Courtesy La Gazzetta dello Sport

Time Trials:
For the first time since the 1988 edition, there will be no less than four stages of racing against the clock, with a total of 73.3 kilometres: the action starts on Saturday with the stage 1 Palermo team time trial of 28.5 km, followed by a 36km ride in stage 10 from Pesaro to Urbino and a 13.8 km mountain time trial to Plan de Corones in stage 16. This year the time trial specialists will battle for the final glory even in Milano, courtesy of a 23.5 kilometer test against the clock.

Climbing Stages:
As usual the Giro will have demanding list of climbs with five climbing stages with three summit finishes: Alpe di Pampeago (Val di Fiemme) in stage 14, Passo Fedaia (the Marmolada) in stage 15 and Monte Pora in stage 19. It could be overlooked that there are also 7 stages listed as medium stages with some significant climbs to overcome early in the stages where the sprinters and breakaway specialists will battle to be the first to the finish.

"Queen Stage" Stage 15
Even if the Tappone, the "Queen Stage" of the event, is arguably stage 15, with the poor guys in the saddle forced to go up and down the Dolomites basically from beginning to end.

Perhaps the most decisive stage in this 91st edition will be the penultimate stage 20 with the Cima Coppi - the legendary Passo di Gavia (2,618 meters)  followed by the beast Mortirolo (1,854 meters) and the Aprica (1,173 meters) before finishing in Tirano after 224 kilometers of racing. This stage could radically change the general classification if the leaders falter. It may also have an effect on the riders legs with the following and final ride being a 23.5-km time trial into Milan. After two days of back to back climbing stages who ever stands on the podium in Lombardy's main city will have earned the victory.

Sprinters Stages:
Sprinters and their lead out trains will have 5 flat stages that are clearly the turf of the fast finishing legs of the sprinter in the chase for the maglia ciclamino jersey of points leader The remaining 5 stages are mixed terrain, many of which will be a contest between the early breaks and stage hunters and the bunch led by the sprinters team hoping for a mass sprint. The longest leg of the Giro will be Stage 6 from the Lucania town of Potenza to Peschici, a test of 247 km.

The race goes abroad:
San Marino and Switzerland

Forget about the past Giros d'Europa. No rides in (comparatively) distant places like Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, France, Germany this time. Still, the Tour of Italy goes international also in the year 2008 of course; but the guys are not asked to bring a dictionary with them, for all "foreign" legs will be taking place on Italian-speaking soil.

The first international crossing is stage 11, with the tiny and ancient Republic of San Marino - a landlocked enclave whose hilly territory, completely surrounded by Italy, will be crossed, and whose Monte Titano will be climbed, on May the 21st, during the 193 kilometer trip from Urbania to Cesena - stealing the show for some time.

One week later it will be the turn of the Italian-speaking side of Switzerland - the so-called Svizzera Italiana -, whose town of Locarno, situated on the north shore of Lago Maggiore, will be playing host to the finish of Stage 17.

The very next day another city in the Land of the Swiss, Mendrisio, shall be entering the Tour of Italy books as starting place of the leg which will be finishing into Italy's own Varese (host town of the 2008 Worlds about four months later, by the way...) and giving all fast wheels still around their last opportunity to stamp their authority on the race (maybe), and any wannabe rainbow jersey winner a first chance to test (part of) the World Champs course.

2008 Giro d'Italia Teams -
Team  - (Leaders & Sprinter/Stage Hunters)

1. Ag2r-La Mondiale (Valjavec, Nocentini)
2. Barloworld (Soler, Gasparotto)
3. Caisse D'epargne (Karpets, J. Rodriguez, Rujano)
4. Cofidis (Nuyens, Verbrugghe)
5. Csf Group-Navigare (Sella, Richeze, Laverde)
6. Diquigiovanni-Androni (Simoni, Hondo, Nardello)
7. Euskaltel Euskadi (Landaluze)
8. Francaise Des Jeux (Le Boulanger)
9. Gerolsteiner (Rebellin, Forster, Fothen)
10. High Road (Cavendish, Pinotti)
11. Lampre (Bruseghin, Lorenzetto)
12. Liquigas (Bennati, Nibali, Pellizotti)
13. Lpr Brakes (Di Luca, Savoldelli)
14. Quick Step (Bettini, Garate, Visconti)
15. Rabobank (Menchov, Brown)
16. Saunier Duval-Scott (Riccò, Piepoli)
17. Silence-Lotto (Mcewen)
18. Slipstream (Backstedt, Millar, Vandevelde, Zabriskie)
19. Team Csc Mcgee, Voigt, O'grady)
20. Team Milram (Zabel, Astarloa)
21. Tinkoff Credit System (Petrov, Brutt, Ignatiev, Mazzanti)
22. Astana (Contador, Kloden, Leipheimer)

2008 Giro d'Italia Stages

10 - Stage 1: Palermo, Sicily Team Time Trial  28.5 km
11 - Stage 2: Cefalu - Arigento 207 km
12 - Stage 3: Catania - Milazzo 208 km 
13 - Stage 4: Pizzo Calabro - Catanzaro - Lungomare 187

Courtesy La Gazzetta dello Sport

14 - Stage 5: Belvedere Marittimo - Contursi Terme 170 km
15 - Stage 6: Potenza - Peschici (Circuit of Gargano) 247 km
16 - Stage 7: Vasto - Pescocostanzo 179 km
17 - Stage 8: Rivisondoli - Tivoli 200 km
18 - Stage 9: Civitavecchia - San Vincenzo 194

19 Monday: 1rst Rest/Transfer Day

Courtesy La Gazzetta dello Sport

20 - Stage 10: Pessaro - Urbino  Individual Time Trial 36 km
21 - Stage 11: Urbania - Cesena 193 km
22 - Stage 12: Forli - Carpi 171 km
23 - Stage 13: Modena - Citadella 192 km
24 - Stage 14: Verona - Alpe di Pampeago/Val di Fiemme 195 km **
25 - Stage 15: Arabba - Passo Fedaia/Marmolada (Dolomiti Stars) 153 km **
26 -  Stage 16: San Vigilio di Marebbi - Plan de Corones ITT 13.8 km

27 Tuesday: 2nd Rest/Transfer Day

Courtesy La Gazzetta dello Sport

28 - Stage 17: Sondrio - Locarno 192 km
29 - Stage 18: Mendrisio - Varese 182 km
30 - Stage 19: Legnano - Presolana/Monte Pora 228 km**
31 - Stage 20: Rovetta - Tirano 224 km
June 1 Sunday:
Stage 21: Cesano Maderno - Milano ITT  23.5 km

Total Kilometers: 3,423.80
Climbing Stages - Tappe di montagna - Mountain Top Finish**
Time Trial - Tappe a cronometro
Mixed Terrain - Tappe miste
Flat Stages - Tappe pianeggianti

Fabio's Giro d'Italia Historical Database:
Maglia Rosa -
Overall Winners since 1909
Maglia Verde - Winners of the KOM competition since 1933 (Green jersey - Maglia verde)
Maglia Azzura - Winners of the Intergiro and/or Combinata Competitions since 1989 (Sky Blue Jersey - Maglia Azzurra)
Maglia Ciclamino - Winners of the Points competition since 1966 (Cyclamen Jersey - Maglia Ciclamino)
Maglia Bianca - Winners of the Best Young Rider Competitions (White Jersey - Maglia bianca)
Giro d'Italia History - Details and Tidbits of the 'Corsa Rosa'
2008 Giro d'Italia - 91rst Edition of the Tour of Italy Course Presentation & Preview
2007 Giro d'Italia - Race Program and Reports Index

Previous Editions and Historical Databases

The 2006 Giro at the Daily Peloton
(To be updated in the near future, articles can be found by using the Daily Peloton search engine.)

The 2005 Giro at the Daily Peloton
The 2004 Giro at the Daily Peloton
The 2003 Giro at the Daily Peloton
The 2002 Giro at the Daily Peloton

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Updated 5/09/2008

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