Yesterday the Mortirolo. So today’s a rest day, right? Wrong! Today the riders face the Lavarone. And with the batteries topped up, the Giro-E peloton can’t wait to get going!
The Levico Terme – Lavarone stage
On today’s stage 14, the Giro-E riders wake up to a nice climb to the Vetriolo pass (first category of almost 12 kilometers, with fixed gradients of 8 percent or more, and peaks of 12 percent). They’ll set out from Levico Terme (not flattered by the Giro this year, but equally eager to host its electric variation), just a handful of kilometres before the start of the ascent. Back in 1988 this same area saw American rider Andrew Hampsten take a stage before going on to win the entire Giro, making him the first non-European to do so. Remarkably, in that same edition he finished second behind Breukink on the Gavia, a stage in which temperatures at the top plummeted to -4 °C. Climate and context at the Giro-E are a bit different: Levico Terme offers pre-race comfort in the midst of the city’s belle époque architecture. Back in the 19th century aristocrats would come here from all over Europe to regain their strength after their ‘noble’ (non-sporting) efforts. With some of the warmest waters in southern Europe, the same-named lake has been awarded Blue Flag status. This corner of Trentino offers a mild climate, fresh air and plenty of sports, from hiking and cycling to paragliding. And don’t forget the spas of Levico and Vetriolo, which draw on the pure springs located at 1500 metres above sea level.
At -15 kilometers from the finish the second roughness of the day, and what a roughness: the Menador, 8 kilometers at an average 9.9 percent with peaks of 15 percent right at the end. In short, there will be pedaling.
Rider of the day – Antonio Rossi
Antonio Rossi, Italian government undersecretary responsible for Sports, the 2026 Olympics and major events in the Lombardy Region, was the Italian flag-bearer at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and is one of Italy’s greatest ever athletes. A canoeist, he has won three Olympic golds, one silver and one bronze. He’s also won three golds, three silvers and one bronze at the World Championships. Yesterday, he rode the Giro-E stage to Aprica.
“I’ve ridden in the Giro-E several times, and it’s always special,” he says. “I also took part in the special stage up the Stelvio, last October. Yesterday, though, was something unique, because the Mortirolo was a climb I’d been wanting to do for ages. It’s thrilling to wind your way up the road in the midst of a crowd that’s come to see the real Giro champions. A great day. But I gotta confess, even with the e-bike it’s still tough! E-bikes have proven to be extremely innovative, and have got so many people into sports cycling. Climbs like the Mortirolo apart, you get to decide how much effort to put in, and when things get critical the motor will be there to help get you to the top. Every year, e-MTBs are becoming more and more commonplace and they’re bringing a lot of good to the area. Some mountain huts have gained a new lease of life as MTBs have made them more accessible. Now we need to do a great job of ensuring both e-bikers and hikers can enjoy the mountains together. What I love about cycling is that it brings people together. When I do a granfondo I see so many groups of friends; riding really is unbeatable for getting together and enjoying a day of sport. The best thing, with both e-bikes and conventional bikes, is that cycling really lets you see the beauty of the landscape, stuff you’d miss if you were driving a car or riding a motorcycle. Compared to using an engine, a panoramic road or a climb is far more satisfying when you propel yourself to the top with your legs. Every experience becomes unforgettable. I say it again, being with others is so gratifying. When you’re jogging, for example, you go at your own pace, while a bike lets you draft, stay with the group and maintain a speed you wouldn’t be able to keep up on your own. Like all sports, if you do it regularly, you’ll soon be struggling less and enjoying yourself more”.
Next update tomorrow, stage 15 of Giro-E, from Pieve di Soligo to Treviso.
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