Hey, it may not be the most interesting race, but at least the logo is 50% less creepy than Lombardia's.
The Giro del Piemonte, a/k/a GranPiemonte, is actually a fairly uninteresting circuit from the Campionissimo's hometown of Novi Ligure to Fossano, across the plains of Piedmont. The race tops out at just under 500 meters, toward the middle portion where it traverses a section of the Appenines. It is no doubt an achingly lovely circuit across yet another region of Italy that resembles a cycling dream landscape. But it's not a big deal as races go:
- It's not on the VDS calendar
- It usually goes to a sprinter
- Sprinters have nothing to do with Lombardia
Still, there's a fun block of unusual sprinters in attendance, like Oscar Gatto, Francesco Gavazzi, Fischer, Chicchi, and so forth, mixed in with plenty of big names tuning up their form for Saturday. One name jumps out: Gilbert! Is Phil-Gil up for another big effort? In all likelihood not, it'd be fool-hardy w/r/t Saturday, but the guy has never been known for caution. Anyway, we probably won't actually see it, but keep an eye out just in case.
1. Philippe Gilbert (Silence-Lotto) 4:32:54
2. Dani Moreno (Caisse d’Epargne) m.t.
3. Francesco Gavazzi (Lampre) m.t.
4. Luca Paolini (Acqua e Sapone) m.t.
5. Reinier Honig (Vacansoleil) a 2
6. Paul Martens (Rabobank) m.t.
7. Alexandre Usov (Cofidis) a 4
8. Gerben Lowik (Vacansoleil) m.t.
9. Dries Devenyns (Quick Step) m.t.
10. Pablo Lastras (Caisse d’Epargne) m.t.