Giro del Trentino to open with team time trial
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Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Giro del Trentino to open with team time trial

by Ben Atkins at 9:59 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
 
Giro d’Italia warm up race to offer dress rehearsal for one of Corsa Rosa’s key stages

lampre-isdThis year’s Giro del Trentino, running between April 17th and 20th, will begin with a team time trial between Riva del Garda and Arco, the race organiser has announced. The opening 15.5km stage will cover a similar course to that of last year’s first test, but where the 13.4km of the 2011 race was raced by individual riders, the 2012 stage will be run over 15.5km by teams.

With the four day race, in one of Italy’s most mountainous regions, is often used as a warm up for the Giro d’Italia, which starts a little over two weeks later. The winner in Trentino in April has often done well in the bigger race later on, including Gilberto Simoni in 2003, Damiano Cunego in 2004 – who both won both – and Michele Scarponi last year, who won in Trentino and went on to take his first ever podium in the Corsa Rosa.

As well as a chance to catch some of Italy’s toughest mountains a few weeks before the Giro d’Italia, the decision to include a team time trial in Trentino will also offer teams a dress rehearsal ahead of the Giro’s 32.2km equivalent stage in Verona. With team time trials something of a rarity, the race organisers are doubtless hoping that this will assist in attracting many of the favourites for the Corsa Rosa.

An added positive side effect for the busy northern Lake Garda area, since a team time trial will have considerably less impact on traffic circulation than an individual one.

Following the team time trial, the Giro del Trentino will take on three tough stages in the Dolomiti mountains, including a new finish at Sant’Orsola Terme, an ascent of the fearsome Punta Velena – which has an incredible average gradient of 14% – before finishing at the top of the 2239 metre Passo Pordoi; a tribute to retired local rider, 2003 race winner, and two-time Giro d’Italia winner Simoni.

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