Giro d'Italia KOM 2018: the Gran Premio della Montagna Starts Here - TBT - Insider. The Thomson Bike Tours Blog

In celebration of the Giro d’Italia’s 101st birthday, we’ve prepared a special KOM adventure for the discriminating grimpeur or grimpeus. Our 2018  Giro route takes you over many of the spectacular summits that define the Giro’s King of the Mountains—or more properly, its GPM (Gran Premio della Montagna) title. And the maglia azzurra* that goes with it, too.

You and your Thomson guides will be tackling—and hopefully, conquering—legendary summits that include the mighty Monte Zoncolan, plus Monte Crostis, Monte Grappa, Sella Ronda, the Passo Giau and others. All told, 6 HCs plus enough Cat 1 and 2 climbs that you’ll need an extra set of hands to count them all for your bucket list.

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

Great Climbs of the Giro: 650 km, 19600 m, 8 Days

After a warm-up 43 km ride with 1150 meters of climbing, things start getting serious on Day Two. The morning begins in the province of Treviso: into the  Venetian Pre-alps and up the most challenging route (out of ten) to the top of Monte Grappa. Then a second HC climb, from Valdobbiadene (your guides can even teach you to pronounce it) up the 15 km HC Pianezze and down the mountain to end your day at our hotel in Vicenza province. After 114 km and 3500 meters of climbing, you’ve earned it.

And so it goes. The week takes us into the Dolomites, on one of the most famous and spectacular rides in Europe, the Sella Ronda; up the Passo Giau, and ultimately to the Queen Stage herself: a summit finish on the toughest climb of all the Grand Tours, the Monte Zoncolan. Even better, we climb it and then a few hours later so does the entire Giro peloton while we view the whole spectacle, first on TV from the comfort of our Thomson hospitality marquee, and then out on the strada itself, literally close enough to touch the riders.

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

Day Seven starts with a final HC climb, this one over the Monte Crostis. Interesting Giro fact:  planned as the high point of Stage 14 of the 2011 Giro, the Crostis was scratched from the parcours when the descent over the back side was deemed too dangerous.

So the stage was routed around  Crostis. But we’ll climb it anyway because this is Thomson and that’s how we roll. Fortunately, we’ll turn around at the summit and make our way back downhill in time for the stage finish in Sappada, just minutes from our hotel. And we’ll celebrate that finish in style, behind the velvet rope in the VIP tribune directly on the Stage 15 Finish Line.

TTBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

TBT Giro KOM 2017 Zoncolan Crostis Grappa Sella Ronda Passo Giau

You guys go ahead; we’ll be up in the VIP tribune, sipping bubbly.

Spring —and the Giro —are just around the corner

So happy 101st to the Giro. We’ve put together a special celebration, with the perfect mix of live race stages and excruciatingly rewarding rides on legendary Giro routes, plus some fun surprises along the way.

If it’s Spring, it must be Giro time. And if it’s not, it’s time to start planning for it. Because the Gran Premio della Montagna requires plenty of preparation.

Details of our Giro KOM Challenge are available here.

*Here’s a bit of trivia to stump your friends with: ask ’em about the Giro’s green jersey, the maglia verde. The GPM jersey had been green since the Giro started the classification in 1933, but switched to its current blue in 2012 at the request of Giro sponsor Banca Mediolanum. (And it’s stayed that way even after the sponsorship ran out at the end of 2016.) First rider to wear the green was the legendary Alfredo Binda; last one was Stefano Garzelli.

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