Abbiategrasso sits 22 kilometres southwest of Milan. Two years ago the Giro d’Italia visited the place. It was the starting venue of a stage to Alpe di Mera. Simon Yates soloed to a mountain top victory that day.
Abbiategrasso is a popular Giro hub anyway with several stage starts in the last editions. The name is derived from the fertility of the soil. Which makes sense as it is situated in the Po Valley.
The riders traverse the plains to the foot of the Passo del Turchino, a sheer endless false flat leading to the highest point of Milan-San Remo. The Turchino is 25 kilometres long, averages 1.4%, and peaks out at 532 metres above sea level.
The riders descend towards the coast to reach the Mediterranean after 150 kilometres in the saddle. That’s more or less halfway. The route continues to the west until the Capo Mele, Capo Cerva and Capo Berta confront the riders with another minor challenge. The attraction of the capi is that the race starts to catch fire by now. There are almost 40 kilometres remaining after the Capo Berta.
Tension rises further when the riders move through San Lorenzo al Mare, the village at the foot of the Cipressa. The ascent is 5.5 kilometres long and the average gradient sits at 4.1%. Usually, the sprinters are struggling on the Cipressa, notably in the 9% section halfway up the climb.
Still 20 kilometres remaining at the top. The riders descend back to the coast to enter the Poggio 9 kilometres later. The 3.7 kilometres climb averages 3.7%, while the steepest ramp – at 8% – appears 1 kilometre before the summit. A 3.3 kilometres descent flies down into San Remo before the last 2.2 kilometres of Milan-San Remo are flat.
The Poggio has always been decisive in the last six editions, whether by an attack of a small group or a solo effort. Last year, Matej Mohoric distanced his rivals on descent and won La Primavera with a lead of 2 seconds.
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Milan-San Remo 2023: route, profiles, more
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