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Lee's Blog No 10

Giro d’Italia 2013 stages 14-17

 

November 2012, thats when the seed was sewn to book a trip to watch the 2013 Giro. After flights, hotels and car hire was priced and booked, the countdown to May 2013 was on. 4 Brits, 4 days, 1 bike race, I could not wait !!

No need to pack shorts and suntan lotion on this trip, it was fleece's, hats, gloves and scarfs. One of the lads watched one of the stages with 6 layers of clothing on.

Bardencchia

The beautiful town of Bardonecchia, was the setting for our first taste of the action, all boarding the Ski lift to the top of the finishing climb. The biggest adversary the riders have battled in the 2013 edition of the Giro seems to have been the weather, Italy’s famous scenery brought fog, rain & even snow forcing the main climb of Sestriere to be cut from the route & making the climb from Bardonecchia to Jafferau even more important for the climbers & GC hopefuls. If you were unable to watch the stage on Saturday you didn’t miss much, the cameras spent much of the day on the finish line with riders only appearing with 400m to go! That said to see the Maglia Rosa appear from the gloom alongside the flouro kit of Farnese Vini Santambrogio was a rather exciting moment and very much worth the wait! We were stood 200m from the finish line and even managed to grab Eurosports camera mans attention with our Union Jack Flag flying for the Brits. Nibali further advanced his lead on Evans & Uran.

Giro 2013 2 Giro 2013

The following days stage, started with bright sunshine, but the riders were dressed in full winter clothing as they knew what was to expect.Giro 2013 3 I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent at the starting village, watching each and every rider sign on and ride past within touching distance.Sign on With the weather wreaking havoc the previous day on lower slopes it looked as though the Giro’s celebration of the Galibier’s history was not to be. Avalanche warnings on Mt Cenis and the continuous struggles to keep the snow drifts of the legendary climb of the Galibier were ominous. Then as morning broke so did the storm clouds & the route was restored almost in full. Team SKY attempted an attack on the Telegraphe but were closed down. This is where we watched our hero's ride upwards and towards much steeper and colder stretches of tarmac. The stage win went to Movistar’s Visconti ahead of a much needed rest day before a solid week of mountains!

 

Due to road closures and severe weather warnings, we were unable to catch the riders on the lower slopes of the Col De Montcenis, but that didn't dampen our spirits, as the picturesque drive along the shores of Lake Annecy provided a perfect stopping point for lunch before boarding our plan back home. This was a wonderful four days away of bikes, beer, pizza and snow. Just dont mention the Grappa !!!!

 

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