Stage 9 preview

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Bluffers guide: Up into Southern Lazio for a flat hike to the Ciociaria, the mythical Neolithic uplands east of Rome. Expect colour, folklore, a long breakaway and (probably) a gallop. Like many Central Italian cities, Frosinone was all but flattened by the allies during WWII, but its magnificent duomo somehow survived. Still today it dominates the skyline.

Buon appetito: Sagne coi faggioli is handmade pasta served with a tomato and bean broth, is a Ciociaria speciality. The local red wine is Atina, a luscious cabernet Sauvignon.

Local hero: Valerio Agnoli (Liquigas) – A reliable gregario, Agnoli has made the Liquigas line-up in the last four giri. Hailing from Alatri, near Frosinone, he ought to enjoy a relatively quiet day on his home roads.

Pier Bergonzi says: “Another Tirreno type stage. The percorso suggests it’s for the sprinters, and I remember seeing Freire win here. My guess is that it’ll be a rider of his ilk, but I’ve a feeling they won’t all come in together. There are lots of little climbs to get over, and it’s one where a brave rider who goes at the right moment and gives it everything has a chance.”

© RCS Sport


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