Giro d'Italia

Giro rider strike avoided with additional safety measures on Crostis

TERMOLI, Italy (VN) — The harrowing Monte Crostis descent will unfold as scheduled following a face-to-face meeting Sunday evening between the peloton's biggest riders and Giro d'Italia race director Angelo Zomegnan.

NAPOLI, Italy (VN) — The harrowing Monte Crostis descent will unfold as scheduled following a face-to-face meeting Sunday evening between the peloton’s biggest riders and Giro d’Italia race director Angelo Zomegnan.

Riders were threatening to strike the harrowing Monte Crostis descent that’s on tap later in this Giro d’Italia, but Zomegnan convinced them that narrow, twisting road will be safe for competition. The spur-of-the-moment meeting unfolded hours after the Mount Etna stage when the entire peloton dined together in a local pizzeria while traveling in a seven-bus convoy to catch a flight from Sicily back to Italy’s main peninsula.

“Dave, Contador, Nibali, Scarponi and some of the other big riders talked among themselves and approached Zomegnan directly to express their concerns about the descent,” Garmin-Cervelo sport director Lionel Marie told VeloNews. “Zomegnan assured them that the descent will be safe. Crews have installed netting like at ski races and padding. The riders came away satisfied and the race will happen as scheduled.”

Fears of the Monte Crostis descent have been reaching the boiling point all week in the wake of the tragic death of Wouter Weylandt during the third stage of the Giro. Riders were already concerned about the steep descent after some of the top GC stars rode recon’ missions on the route. The descent comes before the final climb up to the Monte Zoncalon summit in the decisive stage 14.

“That descent off the Crostis, which is the climb before Zoncolan, I don’t know how we’re going to get down that,” Contador said last month after previewing the stage. “The drops there are tremendous. All I know is that even in a car, the descent puts your hair on end. I only hope nothing unfortunate happens that day. I am glad to have seen it, just to be able to get ready for it in my mind. But if it’s raining or snowing … I don’t even want to think about it.”

Zomegnan was quoted on La Gazzetta dello Sport as saying that the route has been secured and is confirmed to stay in the Giro.