Five South Africans will be representing the country in the 23rd edition of the Giro Donne, the women’s version of the Giro d’ Italia. The Giro Donne is the biggest and most prestigious stage race in the world for women’s cycling. Robyn De Groot, Ashleigh Moolman, Cherise Taylor, Joanna Van De Winkel and Lise Olivier will all be on the start line representing the Lotto Belisol Ladies Team.
Starting on Friday 29th June, racing commences in Napoli and ends 9 days later on 7 July in Bergamo. No less than 16 teams will be in action at this year’s tour. UCI top ten world ranked Teams consisting of Stichting Rabobank, Specialized Lululemon, AA Drinks Leontien, GreenEdge AIS, Hitec Products Mistral Home, Diadora Pasta Zara, Be Pink, Faren Honda, Rusvelo, Lotto Belisol including a number of wildcard entries.
Race favourites include Emma Pooley (AA Drink), winner of five stages in 2011, World Time Trial Champion Judith Ardt (GreenEdge) who finished 3rd in 2011. However we can’t count out Tour de Free State winner Emma Johansson (Hitec Products), South African Road Champ Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (Lotto Belisol Ladies) and Annemiek van Vleuten (Rabobank).
Stage 1 29th June: 139km Napoli – Terracina
Stage 2 30th June: 7.2km ITT Rome
Stage 3 1st July : 124km Vernio – Castiglione dei Pepoli
Stage 4 2nd July: 98km Montecatini
Stage 5 3rd July: 118km Polesella – Molinella
Stage 6 4th July: 122km Modena – Salsomaggiore
Stage 7 5th July: 129km Voghera – Catagnola della Lanza
Stage 8 6th July: 116km Mornago – Lonate Pozzolo
Stage 9 7th July: 106km Sarnico – Bergamo
To follow the race log on to Rai Sport http://www.raisport.rai.it to be able to live stream the race.