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Stage 20 of Giro d'Italia in balance due to Covid and bad weather

Race organiser RCS is being forced into last minute route changes for the penultimate stage this Saturday

Joe Robinson
21 Oct 2020

The penultimate stage of the Giro d'Italia is in the balance due to Covid-19 restrictions and bad weather.

Stage 20 of this year's Giro was scheduled to be a 198km mountain run from Alba to Sestriere. Within the stage, the race would climb the high 2,733m pass of the Colle dell'Agnello before crossing the border into France and then eventually finishing back in Italy.

Earlier on Wednesday, race organiser RCS confirmed that the passage of the Agnello would be scrapped due to poor weather. It is expected that temperatures at the summit of the climb could drop below freezing and therefore the guarantee of passable conditions was impossible.

RCS then began contingency plans to run the stage without the Colle dell'Agnello, however, there has now been another roadblock. The French town of Briançon has stated it will no longer permit the race to pass through on Saturday due to new coronavirus restrictions being imposed in France.

Via its Facebook page, the region stated, 'due to the health crisis and decree number 2020-1262 of 16th October 2020 prohibiting groups of more than six people on public roads, the passage of the Giro on the territory of Briançonnais can not take place.'

The Giro was scheduled to pass through the town of Briançon 166.5km in to the 199km stage, leading the race into the penultimate climb of Montgenevre.

This leaves the race organiser just three days to plan an alternative route for the stage otherwise it risks not taking place.