Giro d’Italia 2020 Report

Last time up the StelvioSo, how did I fare this Giro d’Italia 2020, compared to what I had in mind beforehand?

Well, I choked on the Mortirolo (from Mazzo) again and – barely – made it up the Bernina, all the way from Tirano.

The difference with last year being, that this did not happen during the same stage and that the Mortirolo was just as hot, but the Bernina was the coldest of all.

But, I kinda, sorta, had my revenge on the Mortirolo, as I was on its summit no less than four times, once twice during the same stage.

I also ended up on the Stelvio summit three times, during my prologue and as finishes for stages 7 and 9.

And, I was able to complete the Maratona dles Dolomites, which had been on my to-do/wish list, since I first visited the Dolomites in 2011.

Not surprisingly, that stage (6) also came with the highest elevation difference (D+) of all stages: almost 4,250 meters.

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Giro d’Italia 2020 Plans

Contrary to my past ‘Grand Tours’, I’m not going to write a road book for my Giro d’Italia 2020.

Every time I put a lot of effort in it and while I usually manage to generally follow the stages I had in mind, I frequently have to change plans anyway.

This can be for any number of reasons, my advancing age probably not being the least important.

But, I’ve also suffered from a cyclist nodule and intense, hernia induced or incident related (back) pains.

Plus, the weather can be a force to reckon with and not seldom have I been cycling in near freezing conditions or ice cold rain one day, only to have my brain blown out because of the heat the next.

And while I have new climbs to discover during this Giro, I am already quite familiar with the area(s) and most of its climbs.

So, I can leave it that and you can stop reading if you’re no longer interested, but I’m writing down a few (loose) ideas anyway…

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Tour de Suisse 2019 Report – Part 1

Tour de Suisse Logo

Today, we have moved to Sedrun, a small town on the Oberalp, between Andermatt and Disentis.

This means that the first week of my Tour de Suisse 2019 has come to an end.

Although I eventually cycled almost every pass I wanted, that didn’t go as planned.

I already knew beforehand that my road book was something I was most likely not going to stick to anyway, but I didn’t anticipate the actual reason why I had to make changes to my stages…

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Tour de Suisse 2019 Stages – Part 1

Tour de Suisse Logo

In a previous post, I have described the area around Slivaplana, our first base camp for my Tour de Suisse 2019.

This post provides more details on the possible stages and alternatives I have in mind and which I will probably not ride.

Although not for lack of trying, but just because most of my trip ideas are insane, given that I would like to ride every day and I’m not a world tour pro rider…

Another factor is, that there are many climbs, most of them with at least two alternative routes to cycle them, and I have only so many days during either part of my Tour de Suisse.

So, each stage below is described including alternatives – if you’d rather not read all of that, just wait for my post stage reports later on ­čÖé

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Mortirolo


Another dreaded, steep climb: the Mortirolo (or Passo della Foppa) with a summit at 1,852 meters. It used to be the favorite mountain of Marco Pantani.

“If you want to die, this is where you go” – encouraging words, often found when reading reports about this climb…

However, I think the Mortirolo from Mazzo di Valtellina, labeled the most difficult, is not much worse than┬áthe Gerlitzen – sadly, the latter is, or at least it was when I climbed it in 2008, hardly known to anyone, but I can assure you it’s as tough as the Mortirolo, especially the climb from Tsch├Âran…

Nevertheless, I only managed to not nearly give up once: the first time I tackled the Mazzo ascend in 2011.

I’m not counting the Monno route, as that is do-able any day, but I’ve choked on the Mazzo – twice – and Grosio side since then.

The only time I went up from Grosio, was after I did the Monno ascend first, so that probably made it ‘a little’ more difficult.

Described here are the three ‘most famous’ alternatives, but there are quite a few ways to the top of the Mortirolo, many of which no more than goat paths and/or hiking trails.

This means that with a mountain bike, you have some more options to exhaust yourself. One alternative that is used in at least one┬ágran fondo, is the one from Tovo, just south of Mazzo, with grades up to 26%…

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