Roglic, Fuglsang, Deignan among lineup for virtual Giro d’Italia

Seven-stage online race to raise funds for Italian Red Cross will feature five men's teams and three women's teams.

Photo: Getty Images

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While the Giro d’Italia may not be rolling out of the streets of Budapest as planned on May 5, this spring will see a Giro of another sort.

Giro organizers RCS Sport have revealed details of a men’s and women’s virtual Giro d’Italia, with pro teams, retired stars, and the general public all invited to join. Participants will race across seven simulated Giro stages, with a general classification for both pros and amateurs.

The ‘Giro d’Italia Virtual’ will raise funds for the Italian Red Cross via participant donations. The Red Cross has been at the forefront of the fight against the coronavirus crisis in Italy, which has been one of the nations hardest hit by the pandemic.

The pro classification will be ranked by team, rather than by individual, with Astana, Bahrain-McLaren, Movistar, Jumbo-Visma, Bardiani CSF Faizanè and a composite U23 Italian team competing in the men’s pro race, while Trek-Segafredo, Movistar, Astana, and the women’s Italian national cycling team will race in the women’s event. Several ex-pros including Ivan Basso, Alessandro Ballan, and Claudio Chiappucci will also participate.

2019 Vuelta a España winner Primoz Roglic, Liege-Bastogne-Liege star Jakob Fuglsang and super-sprinter Elia Viviani are among the men’s field, while Elisa Longo Borghini, Letizia Paternoster and former world champion Lizzie Deignan will compete in the women’s race.

Competing riders are able to complete each stage at any point within a three-day window, effectively making the race a series of time trials rather than mass participant races. Entry requires a Garmin Connect account and smart trainer, with entry details found here. The first stage runs April 18-21.

All seven stages are based on sections of the now-postponed ‘real’ Giro.

Stage 1: April 18-21

  • 32.1km/480m ascent
  • Based on stage 10, San Salvo – Tortoreto

Stage 2: April 22-24

  • 32.7km / 980m ascent
  • Based on stage 12, Cesenatico – Cesenatico

Stage 3: April 25-28

  • 26.9km / 550m ascent
  • One lap, finishing circuit of stage 16, Udine – San Daniele del Friuli

Stage 4: April 29-May 1

  • 25.9km/930m ascent
  • Based on stage 17, Bassano del Grappa – Madona di Campiglio

Stage 5: May 2-5

  • 30km / 710m ascent
  • Based on stage 18, Pinzolo – Laghi di Cancano (Stelvio)

Stage 6: May 6-8

  • 31.5km  / 1,180m ascent
  • Final section of stage 20, Alba – Sestriere

Stage 7: May 9-10

  • 15.7km 30m ascent
  • Full stage 21 Milan ITT

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