For the second consecutive year, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert will line up at the start of the last Monument of the season. During the 2020 season which was disturbed by the pandemic, the Belgian team discovered Il Lombardia (1.WT, 9/10) in the heart of summer.
Even though the Classic of the falling leaves returned to its traditional place on the calendar this Saturday, the start and finish villages have been swapped for this 115th edition. Like it was for the last time in 2016, the peloton will start in Como for 239 kilometer towards Bergamo. The parcours was entirely renewed, and from the seven categorized climbs, only the famous Madonna del Ghisallo is still on the parcours. The climb will be the first difficulty of the day for the riders after 30 kilometer, followed by a flat part next to the Lake Como.
The riders arrive soon close to Bergamo, but before entering the city, they make a detour with the six remaining difficulties. In this loop of 150 kilometer, they first encounter the Roncola (9.4 km at 6.7 %), then the Berbenno (6.9km at 5%), followed by more than 20 uphill kilometers towards the summits of Dossena (11.1km at 6.1%) and Zambla Alta (9.8km at 3.3%). The downhill then brings the riders to the foot of the Passo di Ganda (9km at 7.1%), who precedes the short final climb Colle Aperto (1.3km at 7%). The top of this last one is 3 kilometer before the finish in the Viale Papa Giovanni XXIII.
This Tour of Lombardia is a special event for Lorenzo Rota and Simone Petilli, who live in the region of the race. Rota finished 18th in his fifth participation last year and aims to shine in his native town Bergamo after solid performances on Italian soil this season. He will be able to rely on Petilli, who also knows the roads very well as an habitant of a neighboring village of Lake Como. The team can also rely on the experience of Belgian rider Jan Bakelants, who participated nine times in this Monument, but also on red jersey wearers in the Tour of Spain Odd Christian Eiking and Rein Taaramäe. Czech rider Jan Hirt and South-African rider Louis Meintjes will add their climbing talent to the team directed by Valerio Piva and Steven De Neef.
Line up :
Odd Christian Eiking
Sports Direction :
Steven De Neef