2023 Giro d’Italia Stage 20 Preview

Tarvisio > Monte Lussari 18.5km ITT

Come on, let’s be honest, the Giro has been utter shite. Basically, some riders went home, and we had three TTs. That’s it. Pathetic. The worst grand tour in living memory. Yes, the weather was bad, but fuck me, it’s been horrendous to watch. Enough complaing, time for an exciting stage. We have 11.5km of flat, then 7km at 12.3%. With just 26 seconds between Thomas and Roglič, the battle for the pink jersey is still very much alive.


Sunny, warm, not much wind.

The Climb

What a terrible looking climb. The opening 4.75km averages 14.8% and there’s a maximum gradient of 25.9%! That’s the steepest I can remember seeing in professional cycling.


Geraint Thomas – will go fastest on the flat, but what about the climb? Thomas has had a brilliant race, just once looking in difficulty, back on the Cappuccino climb. Starting with a buffer of 26 seconds is good, in fact, it could be the difference between winning and losing. Given the way he’s been climbing, I think he’ll start confident of winning the pink jersey, this is a discipline Ineos excel in. 

Primož Roglič – can he make up 26 seconds on Thomas? We all remember that day on Planche de Belle Filles, he doesn’t have a great record in TTs at the end of a grand tour. However, it seems that Roglič is improving throughout this final week, the opposite of what normally happens to him in the Tour de France. His crash has had a big impact on his performance, but he seems to recover as everyday passes. With thousands of Slovenian fans on the roadside, he won’t be lacking in motivation. I’ll also point out that Thomas will be racing in the race organisers skin suit, Roglič will be wearing his own one, which costs a lot of money and will be worth around 10 seconds of an advantage. Will he do it? I don’t know.

João Almeida – he’ll struggle to match the big two, double-digit gradients are not his friend.

Will Barta – the international man of mystery hasn’t been seen since stage 9, not even a glimpse. I’ll take you back to 2020 and the final TT in La Vuelta. That day it was 32km of flat and 2km at 14%, and he finished just 1 second behind the winner, Primož Roglič. Obviously, this TT has a lot less flat and a lot more climbing, making it hard for him to repeat that performance, but I think the podium is a realistic ambition. While the GC guys have been using up matches, he’s been saving everything he’s got for this stage.

Bruno Armirail – after a brilliant TT back in Cesena, he’ll be hoping for a repeat performance in this stage. He lost time today and now sits 16th on GC, but given he had no GC ambitions, it won’t hurt too much. After an amazing race, he’ll be hoping for one more good day.

Damiano Caruso – now sits 4th on GC, but the podium is out with his reach. Given how good he is on his TT bike, he’ll be aiming for top 3 in the stage.

Thymen Arensman – this is a good TT for him. After performing poorly in Tour of the Alps, he’s been excellent in this race and deserves his 7th place on GC. With Pinot and Dunbar within sight, he knows a good TT will see him finish 5th, which would be a brilliant result.

Laurens De Plus – Ineos are likely to finish with three riders in the top 10 in the stage and on GC, what a race it’s been for them, even better when you consider they’ve been down to 5 for the last week. Given the way he’s been climbing, I think De Pluskie is capable of a huge performance, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him in the hot seat.

Sepp Kuss – his type of TT. No more riding for Primož, he can simply ride his heart out and remind everyone that he’s one of the best climbers in the world. 

Prediction Time

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I think we’ll see Primož Roglič win the stage and pink jersey, get ready for an exhilarating stage.