Madonna di San Luca

Welcome to Italy!

The Stage where Primož Roglič won the opening stage of Giro d’Italia 2019 in such a dominant fashion, that half of Slovenia was dreaming maglia rosa for almost a month afterward. Probably no one seriously in love with road bicycles probably isn’t unfamiliar with the famous Bologna climb. But very little actually know or has a chance in a life to climb up that mystical hill. Until now.

The last two final stages of this autumn series. And what stages? It’s a showdown time!

This week we will do a time trial race on perfect GPS based Giro Stage 1 replica. Zwift artist even tries to replicate all the buildings, streets and surrounding like in real life. For A and B group it is going to be double the distance meaning they will have to climb San Luca twice! They will need to do a regular 8km distance through Bologna city up to Madonna di San Luca, descent down and ride back to start, and then do it all again. Super demanding effort, where only the strongest rider may be able to break 40min mark, but for most finishing time is expected to be somewhere between 40 and 55min. What makes this TT so special is the nature of the course. This is a super tricky time trial from two aspects: first from a pacing point of view, and second from equipment choice.

Speaking of pacing, it is absolutely crucial to structure your effort differently throughout the course, with the general recommendation to go hardest when you are moving slowest. Also for A and B riders, its a long one. This means you need to start a bit conservative with the distance in your mind. The last thing any would want is to go all-out from the pen, got smashed with a hammer, then suffer it through the burn-out process until the end.

Choosing perfect equipment is even more tricky than pacing. It is important to understand, that every rider decides for himself what bike and equipment he will use during the stage. It is possible and allowed to use either a road bike or time trial bike. It is on the rider to decide, but in any case, drafting is disabled and we will be riding separated from the start. For A and B’s, there will be 18km of fast flats, 4km of super steep and slow climbing and 2km of high speed descending. What is the best equipment for this type of mixture? Should I use road bike frame and fly up San Luca gaining 40-50sec in a single climb comparing to heavy TT rig?? Or should I use TT frame and go full aero with deep rims and disk trying on flats to bring back those 1min 30sec lost while climbing? Holly-Moly, a question for million dollars.

Categories & will do 2 laps, twice up the long hill, 24 km all together and 460 m of climbing!
Categories & will do only 1 “lap”, basically start to finish, no going back down the hill and up again like the As and Bs. 8 km and 230 m of climbing.

There are two slots available and remember; you can do either one or both, your best result will count towards general points classification.

Click on the day that fits your schedule for a link to Zwift event signup page.

Saturday at 15.05 CET (3 PM CET) / 2 PM BST / 9 AM EDT / 6 AM PDT / 11 PM AEST / 2 AM NZDT
Sunday at 10.30 CET (10.30 AM CET) / 9.30 AM BST / 5.30 AM EDT / 1.30 AM PDT / 7.30 PM AEST / 9.30 PM NZDT

Here is the VeloViewer 3D map of the course.

Have you ridden the course before? The easiest way is to check the segment in your Strava account.