The 2014 Giro d’Italia will get under way on Friday 9 May with a team time trial in Belfast and conclude more than three weeks later in Trieste following a route that takes in no fewer than nine uphill finishes, including the summit of the Zoncolan on the penultimate day.
The route of next year’s race was unveiled today in Milan, with riders in attendance including reigning Giro champion Vincenzo Nibali, two time winner Ivan Basso, and former world champion and 2011 Tour de France winner, Cadel Evans.
Also in attendance was Northern Ireland minister for enterprise, trade and investment Arlene Foster who together with colleagues across the border in the Republic of Ireland has worked to help bring the ‘Corsa Rosa’ – the ‘Pink Race’ – to the Emerald Isle.
The opening two stages will both start and finish in Belfast before the race heads south from Armagh and into the Republic for a stage finish in Dublin ahead of the first of three rest days to allow time for the transfer into Italy – explaining why the race, unusually, starts on a Friday.
The full route, which also comprises two individual time trials,six flatter stages that should suit the sprinters and four transitional stages that may favour breakaways, can be seen in this video from organisers RCS Sport.
Fri 9 May Stage 1: Belfast - Belfast TTT, 21.7km Sat 10 May Stage 2: Belfast - Belfast, 218km Sun 11 May Stage 3: Armagh - Dublin, 187km Mon 12 May Rest day 1 Tue 13 May Stage 4: Giovinazzo to Bari, 121km Wed 14 May Stage 5: Taranto - Viggiano, 200km Thu 15 May Stage 6: Sassano - Montecassino, 247km Fri 16 May Stage 7: Frosinone - Foligno, 214km Sat 17 May Stage 8: Foligno - Montecopiolo, 174km Sun 18 May Stage 9: Lugo - Sestola, 174km Mon 19 May Rest day 2 Tue 20 May Stage 10: Modena - Salsomaggiore Terme, 184km Wed 21 May Stage 11: Collecchio - Savona, 249km Thu 22 May Stage 12: Barbaresco - Barolo TT, 46.4km Fri 23 May Stage 13: Fossano - Rivarolo Canavese, 158km Sat 24 May Stage 14: Agliè - Oropa, 162km Sun 25 May Stage 15: Valdengo - Plan di Montecampione, 217km Mon 26 May Rest day 3 Tue 27 May Stage 16: Pontedilegno - Val Martello, 139km Wed 28 May Stage 17: Sarnonico - Vittorio Veneto, 204km Thu 29 May Stage 18: Belluno - Rifugio Panarotta, 171km Fri 30 May Stage 19: Bassano del Grappa - Monte Grappa TT, 26.8km Sat 31 May Stage 20: Maniago - Monte Zoncolan, 167km Sun 1 June Stage 21: Gemona del Friuli - Trieste, 169km
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.