The 2018 Giro d’Italia‘s final stage on Sicily is a big one, featuring this year’s first summit finish on Mount Etna.
Caltanissetta hosts the start of the 169-kilometre stage, with a lumpy opening half and then a flat central section before hitting the base of Etna.
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The final climb takes in around 15 kilometres starting in Ragalna, with gradients hitting 16 per cent in places before the finish line at the Etna Astrophysical Observatory.
Having valiantly maintained his grip on the the overall race lead since stage two, Australian Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing) goes into the stage wearing the maglia rosa.
It is widely expected that Dennis will relinquish the lead as the pure climbers and general classification contenders move to the fore on the final mountain.
Of the GC contenders, defending champion Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) goes into the stage best placed – in second spot behind Dennis at just one second.
British rider Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) has put in an aggressive display of riding so far, and could easily move up from his third place overall.
After three stages in Israel and three on Sicily, the Giro finally reaches mainland Italy on Friday for stage seven. Pizzo hosts the start of a relatively short and flat route to Praia a Mare, which should suit the sprinters – perhaps another one for 2018 double stage winner Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors)?
The 2018 Giro d’Italia concludes on Sunday, May 27, in Rome after three weeks of racing.