CHERASCO, Italy (VN) — This weekend’s decisive mountain stages could see major rerouting due to worsening weather conditions in the Alps, Giro d’Italia officials said Friday.
Race director Mauro Vegni confirmed to Agence France Presse that snow and winter-like temperatures on the upper flanks of the Col du Galibier may force Giro officials to remove the historic climb from Sunday’s 15th stage.
Giro officials have been assured that French authorities are working to clear roads of recent snowfall, but the race is already creating a “plan B” in case snow continues, AFP reported.
Vegni told AFP that if conditions worsen at the Galibier summit, at 2,642 meters, the finish line would be moved to Plan Lachat, at 1,962 meters, about 8km short of the summit. So that means the peloton would climb the Col du Télégraphe, pass though the village of Valloire, and head a little less than halfway up the Galibier.
There is also worry about conditions on the summit of Mont Cenis, a Cat. 1 climb featured both in Sunday’s and Tuesday’s stages. Despite cold temperatures hovering around 37 degrees Fahrenheit, officials are optimistic the climb will be open, with safe race conditions.
Officials are also keeping a close eye on the Bardonecchi summit for Saturday’s 14th stage. The stage ends with a steep, 7km climb up the flanks of the ski area. If conditions worsen, the finish line will be located in the valley instead.
Officials said the final decisions will be made as late as possible to try to allow the stages to unfold as planned.