Given the route both options are viable, although one could argue that the shortened is likely to inspire the GC riders.
Whether they will last until the finish line in Cortina d’Ampezzo or not, a huge battle for the breakaway is to be expected. Shortly after the start La Crosetta appears, a 11.6 kilometres climb at 7.1%. Back in the valley the route serves two uphill kicks before continuing on a sheer endless false flat to the base of the Passo Giaum which is a tough test of 9.9 kilometres at 9.3% before a 17 kilometres downhill leads onto a final drag on cobbles. The last 500 metres go up at 5.2%.
The 17th stage of the 2012 Giro featured the same finale and the race boiled down to a clash of GC rivals. ‘Purito’ Rodríguez bested Basso, Hesjedal, Uran, Scarponi and Pozzovivo in the uphill sprint in Cortina d’Ampezzo.
Favourites 16th stage 2021 Giro d’Italia
*** Egan Bernal, Simon Yates
** Daniel Felipe Martínez, Aleksandr Vlasov, Giulio Ciccone, Hugh Carthy
* Davide Formolo, Daniel Martin, Bauke Mollema, Matteo Fabbro
Another interesting read: route stage 16 Giro d’Italia 2021.
Giro d’Italia 2021 stage 16: profiles
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