Bologna to Verona: 2019 Giro d'Italia Betting Guide

Ian O'Sullivan

Friday, May 3, 2019 7:21 PM UTC

Friday, May. 3, 2019 7:21 PM UTC

The Giro d’Italia starts next Saturday with an opening time trial in Bologna and finishes three weeks later with another time trial that finishes in the Roman amphitheatre in Verona.

<p>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;iframe width=\"560\" height=\"315\" src=\"\" frameborder=\"0\" allow=\"accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture\" allowfullscreen&gt;&lt;/iframe&gt;"}[/]</p><p>And just for good measure, there is also another time trial in the middle of the race, taking the total time trial distance of the race to almost 58kms, the most of any race this year. In between they go over lots of mountains, over 46,500m of climbing in fact but it’s a balanced route that has something for everyone.</p><p>The sprinters will like the first part of the race, with several stages that will suit the fast men, but the profile gets progressively harder as the race goes on, with some truly brutal stages towards the end of the race.</p><p style="text-align:center;"><img alt src="" style="width:653px;height:440px;" /></p><p> </p><p> </p><p> </p><p></p><h2>Heroes and Legends</h2><p></p><p> </p><p> </p><p>The Giro d’Italia conjures up the names of the superstars of the sport like Coppi, Grimondi, Merckx, Hinault, Fignon, Indurain and Pantani, and Chris Froome added his name to the illustrious list of winners, following his unbelievable win in this race last year.</p><p>With just 3 stages left, Simon Yates led the race by 28” from Tom Dumoulin, with Froome 3 minutes and 28 seconds behind and was available to back at 50/1 to win the race. But on a truly incredible day in the Alps Chris Froome took off on the Colle Delle Finestre and just kept going, winning the stage by 3 minutes and with it the overall race.</p><p>This is a race steeped in history - it's the 102nd running of the Giro, which was first run in 1909 when the race was first suggested by the editor of La Gazetta Della Sport to his owner. He wanted to create an Italian replica of the Tour de France, seeing it as a way to promote and increase sales of the newspaper.</p><p>The first race may only have had eight stages, but the 127 riders that started faced an incredible 2,448Kms in just those eight stages, an average of 306kms per stage! This year's race is of course very different with 21 stages stretched over 3 weeks, covering 3,567kms, or an average stage distance of a paltry 170kms in comparison!</p><p> </p><p> </p><p> </p><p></p><h2>The Key Stages</h2><p></p><p> </p><p> </p><p>Stage 7 takes them to L'Aquila, an area devastated by earthquakes in 2009, on a very lumpy and tough stage and stage 8 is the longest of the race (by just 1km) at 239kms. Suddenly on Stage 13 it gets really serious - almost 200kms long, with a finish over 2,000m, taking in a Cat 1 and Cat 2 on the way to Lago Serru, with a final climb that is almost 45kms long from bottom to top.</p><p>Stage 15 is another long one at 232kms and should be an exciting stage as they head to Como in a finish almost identical to the Tour of Lombardy Classic race, going over the Ghisallo, Sormano and Civiglio. Stage 16 is a monster Alpine stage, 226kms long, climbing from the first kilometre and taking in the Cima Coppi, the highest climb of the race, the 2,618m Passo Gavia and also the legendary Mortirolo.</p><p>Stage 20 is a brutal stage through the Dolomites, over almost 200kms and over 2,000m of vertical altitude gain. They go over three monster climbs including the Cima Campo, Passo Manghen (2,407m) and Passo Rolle, before a tough last 20kms and the summit finish at Croce d'Aune - Monte Avena. And the race concludes on Stage 21 with the final 17km TT in Verona</p><p> </p><p> </p><p> </p><p></p><h2>The Key Contenders</h2><p></p><p> </p><p> </p><p><strong>Tom Dumoulin - ****</strong></p><p>Winner of the race in 2017, 2nd last year 46” behind Chris Froome, he actually was virtual leader at one point on stage 19 but Chris Froome kept finding more time. Looks like the course was designed for him with three tough time trials, he will take lots of time off his rivals in the TTs and will look to hold on over the mountains to secure his second Giro. Not a great team with him, but he has shown in the past he doesn’t need one to succeed. A very strong favourite, despite he claiming his condition isn’t as good as it was 2 years ago.</p><p><strong>Primoz Roglic ***</strong></p><p>The former ski-jumper has taken to cycling like a duck to water, and has won every stage race he has won this year (UAE Tour and Tirreno-Adriatico) and currently leads the Tour of Romandie at the time of writing. He can climb, he can time trial, and he showed in Romandie he can even win sprints too. He has a strong team here with him, but will miss Robert Gesink who broke his collar bone a few weeks ago and that leaves him light on climbing power to support him. Could be Dumoulin’s biggest challenger</p><p><strong>Simon Yates ***</strong></p><p>Almost won the race in 2017, he led it for most of the race, thanks to his attacking and carefree mentality. But he paid for his exertions later in the race and blew up completely on that stage when Chris Froome broke him, sliding from 1st to 21st by the time the race finished two days later.</p><p>He rode a more conservative and smart race though in the Vuelta a Espana later in the year and led it more or less from the 9th stage, to gain some compense for his loss here. He’s back to try to make further amends though and right the wrongs of last year, and seeing as he seems to have improved his time trialling this year he will be a big danger too as he will be right at the forefront of most of the mountain stages, and is capable of winning stages and taking bonus seconds.</p><p><strong>Egan Bernal ***</strong></p><p>With No Chris Froome this year, Team Ineos (formerly Team Sky) will be looking to their young Colombian protégé Egan Bernal to make it two wins in a row for the team. A superb climber, he is fearless and aggressive, and has already won Paris-Nice this year with a strong display in both the TT and the mountain stages.</p><p>15th in the Tour de France last year, his first Grand Tour, he spent most of the race ripping the legs off all the rivals of his team leaders Froome and Thomas on the climbs. Still only 22, he’s a superb prospect and looks like a rider who will win multiple Grand Tours. But can he step up and beat Dumoulin and Roglic in this one?</p><p><strong>Miguel Angel Lopez **</strong></p><p>3rd in the Giro and Tour of Spain last year, and already having won the Tour of Colombia and Tour of Catalunya this year, ‘Superman’ Lopez is another with big chances in this race. His win in Catalunya came as a result of a trade-mark attack on the big stage to La Molina and there are several stages in this race that could see him do similar and take time off the likes of Dumoulin and Roglic.</p><p>But he will lose lots of time to the stronger TT men – in the Tour of Spain last year on a 32km TT he lost 50 seconds to Simon Yates, so he could lose 90 seconds or more to Dumoulin and Roglic in the middle TT on its own, maybe 2 and a half minutes in total across the three time trials. He’ll just have to make up for it with his attacking nature. Strong team here to support him though.</p><p><strong>Vincenzo Nibali **</strong></p><p>Winner of this race in 2016 and 2013, Nibali has also won the Tour de France and Tour of Spain, one of a very select group of riders to have won all three Grand Tours. He has started this season in impressively good form, riding very well in Milan San Remo, the Tour of the Alps and Liege Bastogne Liege.</p><p>He was riding in 4th place in the Tour de France last year when he was brought down by a spectator and had to abandon the race, and he never really recovered in time for the Tour of Spain and never featured. He has to be respected, he’s looking as fit as he has been in a long time, but he will struggle in the time trials. Look for him to be on the attack in the final week though, he tends to get stronger as others start to fade.</p><p> </p><p> </p><p></p><h2>Outsiders</h2><p></p><p> </p><p> </p><p>The riders listed above do seem to be the most likely winners of this race, it would be a big surprise if the winner was not one of them. But there are plenty other good riders in the race who could pull off a surprise, riders like Mikel Landa, Ilnur Zakarin and Richard Carapaz who are all riding pretty well so far this year. Also watch for Ivan Sosa, Carlos Betancur and Davide Formolo at huge prices, they could go well too.</p><p>Overall though, I think Tom Dumoulin will just have too much for his rivals here, he will dominate them in the time trials and will go well on most of the mountain stages, limiting his losses to the mountain goats. Miguel Angel Lopez could offer some each-way value around 10/1, there’s not much value in backing any of the others each-way, their prices are all too short.</p><p>As for the sprinters, Elia Viviani and Fernando Gaviria will be doing battle in all the sprint stages, but Gaviria has shown he has what it takes to win the points jersey over the three weeks of the Giro (won it in 2017) and will have a good chance of doing the same again this year.</p><p style="text-align:center;"><a href=";a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18&amp;f=1" target="_blank">Check Out The Prices For The Giro d'Italia on Bet365</a></p>
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