19th stage of Giro cancelled

2013-05-24 10:13
Vincenzo Nibali (AFP)
Ponte di Legno - Heavy snow at altitude has forced the cancellation of the Giro d'Italia's 19th stage, organisers said Friday.

On the first of two consecutive stages in the Dolomites, the peloton was due to tackle two major mountain passes - the Gavia and the Stelvio, the latter, at 2 758 metres, being the highest point of the race's 96th edition.

That plan was virtually abandoned late on Thursday when organisers, fearing for the safety of the peloton, announced a 'Plan B' with the Gavia and Stelvio replaced by the Tonale and Castrin mountain passes.

However it was discovered early on Friday that the Tonale pass was also snowbound.

A short statement posted by organisers on their Twitter feed said: "Due to adverse weather conditions and, in particular, snow on the stage route in its entirety, stage 19 has been cancelled."

The decision was welcomed by riders in the peloton, who this year have raced in atrocious weather conditions in what has been an unseasonably wet and cold spring.

Julian Dean, an assistant sports director with the Orica-GreenEdge team, said: "I'd say the boys are relieved + content w/ the decision that was made. No one wants to deal with conditions like this."

On Thursday, race leader Vincenzo Nibali of Italy extended his advantage over his closest rival, Australian Cadel Evans, to 4min 02sec after winning a 20.6 km uphill time trial.

Although the cancellation of the stage essentially robbed Evans of a chance to try to close the gap on Nibali, the Australian did not seem vexed with the decision.

He gave an indication of the conditions to be expected near 2 000 metres when he posted a message on his Twitter feed, which said: "Snow still falling here at our Giro Hotel...and we are at 1 000m lower altitude than the proposed climbs."

The race finishes in Brescia on Sunday.

Read more on:    giro d'italia  |  vincenzo nibali  |  cycling

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Besides the 'Big 3' of rugby, cricket and soccer, which of the 'smaller' sports in South Africa do you enjoy the most?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.