The next two stages set up the peloton for the final two climbing stages on Friday and Saturday.
Wednesday 27 May: Stage 17 – Tirano to Lugano, flat, 134km
It’s not often the Giro schedules a flat stage in the middle of the third week but it has this year. The question is: are there any sprinters left to take advantage of it? Look for Sky to ride for an Elia Viviani victory to strengthen his grip on the red jersey. Once over the only climb early in the day (sadistic if you consider their legs after yesterday’s stage), it’s a matter of keeping the break at a reasonable distance and staying alert.
Thursday 28 May: Stage 18 – Melide to Verbania, medium mountain, 170km
The first 123km of this stage is, for all intents and purposes, flat and while that usually means that the GC teams will take it easy, I don’t think they have taken it easy on any stage, so expect a few tricks to be tried on the run up to the cat 1 Monte Ologno. After a few jaggedy kilometres, it’s downhill all the way to the finish. I think it’ll be more a case of someone blowing up from fatigue as opposed to hard racing by the GC on this stage, as everyone will want to keep something in the tank for the final two high mountain stages.
Link: Official race website
Header image: Lugano