Tomorrow's stage to Peschici will be shortened by 34 km. Zomegnan announced the news in an interview following the stage. He said he made the decision in consultation with leading riders. Though he didn't specify exactly who helped with the decision, that likely means Bettini, Rebellin, Diluca, and perhaps Pellizotti, as Maglia Rosa. Zomegnan said he recognized the stresses the riders had experienced with the transfers and long stages over the last few days, and hoped that shortening the stage would give them more recovery time tonight and after the stage tomorrow.
The stage will still conclude in Peschici, with a 1330 meter climb. The maximum gradient is 10 percent, and comes close to the finish. This is beautiful coastal country, and the climb winds up the through town switchbacking high above the water. It is a finish for the climbers, and tailor made for Diluca. Pellizotti should not be far behind, and probably has a slim chance to defend the jersey yet another day. Bettini, Rebellin, and Ricco should also be in the mix at the finish. If he follows his usual pattern, Simoni will not contest the stage win, but he'll certainly ride at the front, as should Contador and any other GC rider with serious ambitions. Watch for an escape from Jens! tomorrow, as this course covers his kind of territory. And, he dropped eleven minutes today. Coincidence? I think not.
This one's worth waking up early for, without doubt. Find yourself a stream that works, and gaze upon Bella Italia at its most Bella.