Giro d’Italia 2015 – Stage 1

Valparola, Fedaia & Sella

(Almost an alternative Sella Ronda)

I decided on the “clockwise” alternative of the stage I initially set, including the Fedaia from Rocca Pietore. I wish I hadn’t…

Anyway, I first descended to La Villa and climbed the Valparola. That already seemed to be harder than I remembered, but the descent of the Falzarego and onwards to Caprile didn’t do me a lot of good.

I hadn’t looked at the profile of the Fedaia – I just knew it was supposed to be “more challenging” than the climb from the other end, which was more or less a recovery ride in 2011.

And more challenging it was…

The first part of it didn’t seem that bad, but after some 7 kilometers, the road went up in an almost straight line, at an incline of 11 to 12%.

I had to stop and catch my breath somewhere in the middle of that part – the strain on my back was getting the better of me…

Fedaia from CaprileBut it didn’t get any better after that, as during the “winding” part – stunning as that may look – the percentages rose to 15%, topping 18%.

Suffice it to say, I was glad I made it to the top – barely…

I then descended towards Canazei and got up the Sella, which has the bottom 14 hairpins in common with the Pordoi. After the split – 6.5 kilometers from the start – the Sella hairpins count downwards again (from 10 – 1).

I was “certain” the Sella did not have stretches of over 10%, but it does. And they hurt.

After the short downhill towards Plan de Gralba, I was hoping for a merciful Gardena to finish the day. And admittedly, this was the easiest part of today’s ride, although I felt completely shredded when I started the descent towards Corvara…

Garmin