Mellow Velo

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Stage 15: Rivarolo Canavese – Cogne 177 km
Sunday, May 22nd, 12:15 CET

The first real Alpine stage is played out in the Valle d'Aosta. The 177 kilometres route sets off from Rivarolo Canavese, then takes in three long consecutive ascents, to finish in Cogne after a climb of 22.4 kilometres. These climbs are on wide and well-paved roads, with a number of hairpins in-between. Both is followed by a fast-running descent.

Once the flag has been dropped the riders race towards Ivrea, where they turn north to follow the Dora Baltea river upstream. The first 57 km of this stage are mostly flat going along the valley. At 86 km to go, the first climb of the day starts and there will barely be any flat to be found until the end of the stage. After the second climb, the route returns to exactly the same spot where it began – in Aymavilles. After crossing the Dora Baltea again the route continues in the valley of the Torrente Grand’Eyvia and the climb to Cogne.
The Climbs:

Pila-Les Fleurs: GPM1, 12.3 km at 6.9%. 30 years absent from the Giro.

Verrogne: GPM1, 13.8 km at 7.1%. Included in the 2019 edition.

Cogne: GPM1, 22.4 km at 4.3%. Hard at the start but little more than a false flat for the last 10kms.

Final kms
Over the last 4 km, from the centre of Cogne (with a short stretch of flagstone) all the way to the finish, the gradient hovers around 2.5% (kicking up a little just outside Cogne). The home straight is 300 m long, on tarmac road.

What to expect:

An elevation gain of almost 4,000 metres and an uphill finish would suggest it to be a day for the GC, especially as a rest day follows.
However, the finishing gradients are very moderate and the weekend GC battle has already taken place.
So the breakaway is more of a straightforward choice, with those with the best legs, to come to the fore over the initial climbs and the guy with the best kick, to take the win.

Favourites 15th stage 2022 Giro d’Italia
(even more guess work than usual, after today)
:*:*:*:*:* Bauke Mollema, Thomas De Gendt
:*:*:*:* Davide Formolo, Wout Poels, Koen Bouwman, Lennard Kämna
:*:*:* Guillaume Martin, Rein Taaramäe, Santiago Buitrago
:*:* Tobias Foss, Giulio Ciccone, Sam Ooman
:* Wilco Kelderman, Diego Rosa, Mauri Vansevenant, The GC.
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