Tirreno-Adriatico 2022 – Stage 5 Preview – Ciclismo Internacional

Tirreno-Adriatico 2022 – Stage 5 Preview

By @EchelonsHub

The first day in the hills at TIrreno-Adriatico proved to be quite an active one. On all three laps of the final circuit in Bellante attacks flew off the peloton, with Pogacar, Evenepoel and Ganna active between the attacks in the early laps. All came down to the final climb though where just as in Paris-Nice, UAE Team Emirates took a dominant win. Tadej Pogacar controlled all attacks in the final hilltop finish with apparent ease, before launching his own attack with 500 meters to go and taking the win alongside the leader’s jersey.  

Positive: Pogacar had an easy day, took the win and race lead. Victor Lafay a great surprise in third place. 

Negative: Alaphilippe, Fuglsang, Kuss and Carapaz between those loosing time on this small summit finish. 


The Route

As the peloton once again heads towards the Adriatic sea, they will face a very tough hilly stage of the kind Tirreno-Adriatico is famous for. Almost every year a hilly stage like this creates huge chaos in the peloton as the tough ramps of western Italy’s small towns make for grueling racing scenarios with the riders having to go to their limit several times. 

Here, the stage actually starts relatively simple with flat roads. The approach into the final section of climbs is by no means flat but it doesn’t feature the toughness that we’ve seen today. 

With 18.3 kilometers to go the riders will go through the finish in Ferno. It’s not the first time the riders will finish in Ferno, in 2017 Peter Sagan won on a brilliant hilltop finish that features ramps of over 20%, but that won’t be the case this year, as the riders will go through a parallel road.

In the profile above you see the final 21 kilometers, with the double ascent to the finish in Ferno which features 900 meters at 11% and then after a small flat section, another rise to the line. The final climb to the finish will be 3.2 kilometers long at 6% average.

Inbetween Ferno though the riders will face a tricky loop with a few fast descents and short but very steep and explosive sections that can all be launchpads for attacks.With just 9 kilometers to go the Madona d’Ete climb summits with 2.2Km at 8.5% (you can see it better in the stage profile), and between that ascent and the final climb there’s another steep 14% ramp outlined with around 6 kilometers to go.

The Weather

A slight breeze from the east. The day is very windy, towards the final circuit there will be some headwind, but the hills will cover the wind most of the day.

Breakaway chances: 15% 

I think it’s a GC day again. Today’s group would surely succeed tomorrow, so I don’t discard the possibility of some strong riders infiltrating the breakaway. Today the race blew up quite early, but I think that in the lead now, Pogacar won’t be racing as crazy as he has so far, so a chance would appear. Alaphilippe is no longer a GC candidate, so for Evenepoel to attack and create chaos he’d have to distance Pogacar, which at the moment I just find impossible. So I do expect things to stick together more than the last few years’ hilly stages in Tirreno. Besides, the queen stage comes on the following day, so I doubt many will want to go to the limit. 

The Favourites 

Tadej Pogacar – He’s the strongest rider in the race, by far if things go as today. He can go for the win, but GC is the priority. To be fair he can surely do whatever he wants at this point. 

Remco Evenepoel He’ll be the most covered rider surely but Evenepoel is not afraid to attack at unexpected times, he does it quite well. There’s absolutely a possibility that he can escape, he does have the form, but it’s hard. 

Julian Alaphilippe – He does not look to have the best form. But who knows, this is a stage well suited to him, if anyone can directly beat Pogacar it’s the World champion, providing he looks better than today. 

Giulio Ciccone – The local rider, he’s quite explosive and is capable of performing in this kind of stage, but the most important is that he has relative freedom in comparison to the other climbers. 

I think Pogacar can control anyone he want on the uphills, but on the flatter sections some riders may – and I reinstate the MAY, because UAE have a strong team – escape and possibly get some time. I would say the likes of Jonas Vingegaard, Tao Geoghegan Hart, Enric Mas and Miguel Angel Lopez will be covered directly and will have no chance of sneaking off the front, albeit I expect them to hand around the front in the finale. 

The likes of Wilco Kelderman, Pello Bilbao, Victor Lafay, Emanuel Buchmann or Rigoberto Uran could be more threatening names for a stage win. I would also not discard the likes of Tim Wellens, Quinn Simmons, Michael Matthews, Benoit Cosnefroy, Alex Aranburu or Jhonatan Narváez who are quality puncheurs, some of them may have their luck as they won’t be GC contenders and are suited for this kind of stage. 

Inside The Bus 

This morning I talk to… 

#34 Davide Martinelli – It’s a rough day for you Davide, the priority Is to protect Miguel and you’ll have to do so early in the day, keep the team in good position, get them food and water and make sure there are no mishaps until the guys get into the final circuit. 

#153 Koen Bouwman – We race conservatively today. Jonas has some nice form, Carpegna is where he’ll need to make his move. We don’t know if a GC win is possible with Pogacar riding like this, second place is absolutely achievable, but this isn’t the stage where we’ll get it. Let’s not ride as hard as in this last stage, stay in the wheels, and be there to close gaps for Jonas if needed, not try to attack the race. 

#93 Michael Valgren – Hopefully you can still get that good form in time for the classics. You can test yourself Michael, we have Rigo in a good position for the overall so let’s keep him protected in the final climbs. You can go hard, not save yourself much, in the mountains you won’t be able to give much support, and you need those hard efforts at the time. 

Prediction Time 

⭐⭐⭐Pogacar 

⭐⭐Evenepoel, Alaphilippe, Vingegaard, Bilbao 

⭐Cicone, Hart, Lafay, MA.Lopez, Kelderman, Buchmann, Wellens, Simmons, Cosnefroy, Narváez 

Head says Pogacar, but in Carpegna he’ll be the overwhelming favourite, I think a chance will appear here for someone else. I’ll go with Pello Bilbao, Bahrain have numbers and can play with their numbers, Bilbao has great form and loves this kind of hilly racing. 

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Rúben Silva

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