99th edition of Italy’s oldest bike race starts in Milan.

Milan-Turin bicycle challenge gets going

10-13 Oct. The oldest bicycle race in Italy, dating back to 1876, is a gruelling 200-km stretch which attracts champions from around the world to Milan’s suburb of Magenta for the starting pistol on Wednesday 10 October.

This year the event has attracted champions of the calibre of Gianni Moscon, the new world sprint champion Rohan Dennis, Thibaut Pinot, Julian Alaphilippe, Mikel Landa, Adam Yates, Tour of Spain runner-up Enric Mas, Bob Jungels, Tim Wellens, Rafal Majka, Bauke Mollema, Rui Costa, Dan Martin and Ilnur Zakarin.

The course begins gently enough, crossing the Po plain to Monferrato.  But then the hills start, as the athletes pass through hilltop villages for the middle section.  The final stretch tests the riders’ stamina with an uphill run to Turin’s Superga basilica, with a gradient of over 9 per cent and even one point at 14 per cent – and this is ridden twice in a row!

The Milan-Turin is the first part of a three-phase cycling event, followed on Thursday by the 191-km “Gran Piemonte” race around the historic homes of Italy’s former ruling Savoy family,  and finally on Saturday 13 October by the Bergamo-Como race “Il Lombardia”.