It was blowing like a wind of protest this Friday morning a few hours before the start of the 19th stage of the Giro, between Morbegno and Asti. In a very tense atmosphere, the riders thus threatened to withdraw from the race if the organizers did not review the program as well as the profile of the day as soon as possible. In the viewfinder of the peloton: the length of this penultimate stage (258 kilometers), which the entrants found far too excessive in view of the weather conditions (rain and cold), as well as the very early morning schedule, especially for a third week , which had been set the start of this 19th stage.
On their arrival on the scene, the Australian pink jersey Jai Hindley (Sunweb) and the 168 other competitors still in the race therefore asked to see the organizers expressly in order to resume discussions started on Thursday evening at the end of the 18th stage. And like the day before, the representatives of the peloton relayed the riders’ anger over the length of the stage and the start time to the organization.
The peloton has left Morbegno, but by bus!
– Giro d’Italia (@giroditalia) October 23, 2020
Faced with the threat of the competitors to go on strike and not to take the start of this almost entirely flat 19th stage as well as to give up pursuing this Giro, Mauro Vegni and his teams had no other choice, to believe the Rai, than to bend to find common ground, condition required at least by the peloton.
After having had to add five kilometers to this Friday stage in order to remedy the collapse of a bridge on the initial route and, moreover, where an intermediate sprint had been scheduled, the organization therefore agreed to reduce the route by more than one hundred kilometers (108 in total, for a 19th stage of 150 km now only). The start, which should have been given from Morbegno, will therefore finally be near Milan, 108 kilometers further. Friday morning, the riders left Morbegno, but by … bus.