Giro d’Italia 2013: Stage 21
When: Sunday, May 26
From: Riese Pio X
Brescia has welcomed Giro stages 17 times before, but has never hosted the finish of the national tour until now. It reportedly won the bid over Vicenza, who pulled out of the running.
In 1966 and 1975, the stage finished above town in Monte Maddalena with climbers taking the prize. In the last visit in 2010, André Greipel won a sprint. This year will likely see a similar finish. Instead of its usual TT bookends, the organiser has rewarded the sprinters this year with flat stages in Naples and Brescia. Those who tough it out to the end will have a shot because the altitude never climbs over 136m.
From Riese Pio X, riders will enjoy a parade and celebrate this year’s overall winner. After passing Vicenza and Verona, the day will turn serious. In Brescia, the Giro concludes with five circuits of 6.7km. The race ends in a sprint so the sprinters have a reason not to abandon.
Casoncelli, or Casonsei in Brescian dialect, is a typical tortellini from the area. The handmade pasta is filled with beef and served in butter with sage and Parmigiano topping. Couple it with a Franciacorta wine, Italy’s finest sparkling white – and you’ve got a tipple to rival France’s Champagne.