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Giro d'Italia

’08 Giro route announced

The 91st edition of the Giro d'Italia will begin in Palermo and end in Milan after covering 3423.8km over 23 days, it was announced on Saturday. The exact course for the 2008 Giro, which begins May 10, was presented at a ceremony in Milan's Arcimboldi Theatre. It will begin with a team time trial and end with a 23.5km race against the clock. There will also be two other time trials throughout the race, including a 13.8km mountain time trial finishing atop the famous Plan de Corones.

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By Agence France Presse

'08 Giro route announced

’08 Giro route announced

Photo:

The 91st edition of the Giro d’Italia will begin in Palermo and end in Milan after covering 3423.8km over 23 days, it was announced on Saturday.

The exact course for the 2008 Giro, which begins May 10, was presented at a ceremony in Milan’s Arcimboldi Theatre.

It will begin with a team time trial and end with a 23.5km race against the clock. There will also be two other time trials throughout the race, including a 13.8km mountain time trial finishing atop the famous Plan de Corones.

The highest point the race will visit will be the 2618m Passo Gavia, part of a punishing penultimate stage that will also take in the climbs of Mortirolo and Aprica.

The race will visit two other countries during the 23 days, taking trips into San Marino and Switzerland.

Italian Olympic Committee president Gianni Petrucci said the course would be the ideal preparation for Italy’s Olympic atheletes, who would then travel to Beijing in August for the summer Games.

“It will be an exciting Giro that will help (Italy’s Olympic cycling coach) Franco Ballerini to prepare the squad for the Olympics in Beijing,” Petrucci told Rai television, before turning his attentions to the fight against doping in the sport.

“How do we fight it? By continuing to do what we are already doing,” he said. “We hope that after the Giro d’Italia the Italian squad, among the strongest in the world, will reaffirm its strength.”

Italian cycling federation president Renato Di Rocco said he hoped it would be a clean race and gave his backing to the biological passport, introduced this year to professional cycling in a bid to monitor cyclists to better detect changes that might demonstrate doping.

He also dismissed suggestions that the doping scandals over the last two years will affect public interest in the Giro.

“The biological passport is a great opportunity to be more careful. We have already adopted it with 80 young cyclists,” he said. “Such is the huge affection towards the Giro that it will (still) command a lot of attention.”

Stages of the 20008 Giro d’Italia
Saturday, May 10:
Stage 1, 28.5km around Palermo (team time trial)
Sunday, May 11: Stage 2, 207km from Cefalu to Agrigento
Monday, May 12: Stage 3, 208km from Catania to Milazzo
Tuesday, May 13: Stage 4, 187km from Pizzo Calabro to Catanzaro
Wednesday, May 14: Stage 5, 170km from Belvedere Marittimo to Contursi Terme
Thursday, May 15: Stage 6, 247km from Potenza to Peschici
Friday, May 16: Stage 7, 179km from Vasto to Pescocostanzo
Saturday, May 17: Stage 8, 200km from Rivisondoli to Tivoli
Sunday, May 18: Stage 9, 194km from Civitavecchia to San Vincenzo
Monday, May 19: first rest day
Tuesday, May 20: Stage 10, 36km from Pesaro to Urbino (individual time trial)
Wednesday, May 21: Stage 11, 193km from Urbania to Cesena
Thursday, May 22: Stage 12, 171km from Forli to Carpi
Friday, May 23: Stage 13, 192km from Modena to Cittadella
Saturday, May 24: Stage 14, 195km from Verona to Alpe Pampeago/Val di Fiemme
Sunday, May 25: Stage 15, 153km from Arabba to Passo Fedaia/Marmolada
Monday, May 26: Stage 16, 13.8km from San Vigilio di Marebbe to Plan de Corones (mountain time trial)
Tuesday, May 27: second rest day
Wednesday, May 28: Stage 17, 192km from Sondrio to Locarno
Thursday, May 29: Stage 18, 182km from Mendrisio to Varese
Friday, May 30: Stage 19, 228km from Legnano to Presolana/Monte Pora
Saturday, May 31: Stage 20, 224km from Rovetta to Tirano
Sunday, June 1: Stage 21, 23.5km from Cesano Maderno to Milano (individual time trial)