Israel will host the opening three stages of the 101st Giro d’Italia in May 2018. The ‘Big Start’ in Israel will be the first time that any of cycling’s three ‘Grand Tour’ races; Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana has been held outside Europe.
176 of the world’s top cyclists will begin the race with three stages in Israel, before a further 18 days of racing across Italy, culminating in a finish in Rome.
Commencing on May 4, the race will begin against the backdrop of Jerusalem’s Old City. Over the following two days, the competitors will ride from the North of Israel to the tip of the Red Sea, taking in breathtaking views from start to finish.
The ‘Big Start’ will comprise of three stages of the Giro d’Italia:
The Giro d’Italia 2018 will c ommence on Friday May 4 in the ancient city of Jerusalem with an Individual Time T rial (ITT). The route is very technical, finishing close to the walls of the Old City. Tracing through the city, with numerous bends, small ascents and descents, the route will pass by landmarks like the Parliament (Knesset) and the historic walls incasing the Old City. The finale of the route is uphill, with the gradient increasing from light to demanding.
The first in-line stage is from Haif a to Tel Aviv. Ranging a distance of 167Km will take place on Saturday May 5. The route commencing in Haifa, undulating around Akko and including the first GPM (K OM) of 2018 Giro in Zikron Y akov takes in the elements of the unique landscapes and history of this country. Following, the second part of the route is considerably flat on wide roads, with the last few kilometres, partly within the metropolis of Tel Aviv, and the finish line along the Mediterranean shore line.
The third and final stage within Israel takes place on Sunday May 6, from Be’er Sheva to Eilat on the Red Sea c overing a total 226Km. The route covers the vast open spaces of Israel; the start covers gentle climbs leading to opportunities for the peloton in the direction o f the Negev Desert. Once past the town of Mitzpe Ramon, the route covers a long descent further south towards the coast line of Eilat where the Red Sea hugs the shores.