The Italian Autumn has begun and so has the various races. We will have another one-day race in Tuscany. This year, they have added another climb, the Montefoscoli (700m at 11.8%). This means we will have the hardest edition of Coppa Sabatini in many years.
There are 2611 climbing meters and 210.6 km to be ridden.
The riders start in Peccioli and move towards the first ascend of the Montefoscoli. From here, they take the longest road possible through Selvatelle, Terricciola and move south towards the red outlines. Down there, in the south, we do not have a lot of climbing to be done.
Then we have five laps of the blue circuit. This is where they added the extra climb. It is 25.2 km long and consists of three climbs; Montefoscoli, Terricciola and Peccioli climb. More about those three later. To finish it off, the last 37 km are on the green circuit. Here, we only have the finishing climb in Peccioli involved. Please note, we have a total of eight ascends of the Peccioli. Five of them are tough, but the last three are easier.
The Montefoscoli is short but very demanding. There are a total of five ascends, the last one with 55 km left.
The Terriciola is longer, yet easier. We also have six ascends on this climb, the last with 42 km left.
The Peccili climb (hard version). We have six ascends too. The last with 37 km left.
The last climb of the day is the Piccioli (finale climb). They do it three times within the last 37 km. It is extremely important to have a solid team leading you into the climb with 1km left. It is on a wide road but you will still need to break a lote more in the back. It is not steep enough to drop the fast men, they need to be dealt with earlier on. If a team wants to know how to do it, check out how BikeExchange (Mitchelton-Scott last season) did it. Perfection.
It will not be a sunny day on the bike. It will be rainy and fairly windy.
There are two scenarios. The first is an uphill bunch sprint. The second is a group, where all the strong teams are represented, goes up the road and is allowed to stay away.
We have some WT-teams here with firepower. UAE is the strongest team, without a doubt. The have several options to either go for a sprint or try to ride offensively. If they bring Colbrelli to the line, I doubt they can outsprint him. They have strong puncheurs such as Costa, Covi and Riabushenko to ride aggresively. They all have a good sprint.
Colbrelli is a hard man to look past these days. He DNF’ed today but surely it was to save his legs for tomorrow. Or he has been out celebrating his recent win? I’m not too sure, but I doubt they will be able to drop him tomorrow. He does not have the strongest team to guide him in the final kilometer but his form at the moment is through the ceiling.
Moscon did a lot of puling today for Tao G. Hart. When he brought back the group of five (Wackermann, Powless, Cepeda, Majka and Villela) he kep pushing it instead of letting Tao attack. He looked strong and the weather tomorrow is good news for him. He does not mind a bit of rain.
Ulissi is a rider who does not fancy rain. He has the strongest team around him which means he should be placed in one of the front positions on the finale climb. Third today was by no means bad and the profile tomorrow suits him perfectly too. We will have to see how he copes with the rain.
Higuita should feel pretty confident getting a good result tomorrow. He is fast in a sprint and he has a strong team around him to help him in the closing meters. It will be interesting to see how EF will take on tomorrow’s race. I doubt they will put all their eggs in Higuita’s basket. On paper, he will have a hard time winning.
Wackermann looked very strong today. Do not forget he is a strong sprinter too. I think he should finish within the top-10.
Valgren – attacking option #1
De Marchi – attacking option #2
Rota – attacking option #3
Powless – attacking optiont #4