Colombia’s Egan Bernal, center, and Britain’s Simon Yates, right, pedal during the 14th stage of the Giro D’Italia tour of Italy cycling race, from Cittadella to Monte Zoncolan, Italy, Saturday, May 22, 2021. (Tim De Waele/Pool Photo via AP)
- Stage 16 of the Giro d’Italia (Monday, May24) is the most difficult day of climbing in this year’s event
- The Queen Stage features three Category 1 challenges plus a Hors Catégorie test
- On a most daunting day where is the best betting value?
Before Tuesday’s final rest day of this year’s Giro d’Italia, Monday brings the heat. The Queen Stage, the most difficult day of racing, is an immense challenge with four supersized climbs.
Call it an opportunity to attack, or doing everything you can to survive, maximum effort will be exerted by all when Stage 16 gets going (5:00 ET). There is no question race leader Egan Bernal will be targeted. Thus far he has not just withstood, but countered all challenges.
Bernal is a big favorite to not only win the event, but oddsmakers also strongly favor him (+550) to take Stage 16. Let’s check out what value Bernal and several other contenders possess.
Stage 16 Giro d’Italia Odds
|Rider||Odds to Win Stage at DraftKings||Top-3 Finish Odds|
Odds as of May 23rd.
The big difference between Grand Tours and every other race is what happens on the most difficult days. Not only do riders encounter an impossibly difficult 212 kilometres between Sacile and Cortina d’Ampezzo on Sunday, but they do so having competed at the highest level in 15 of the last 16 days. Riders have to be tired, are nursing injuries, and now you get an elevation gain of 5,700 metres in one stage. Truly, only the strongest survive.
With a massively hard day coming on Monday, it was reasonable to expect GC contenders to take things relatively easy on Sunday. The course had too many hills for pure sprinters, and to the surprise of nobody a breakaway was successful. Victor Campenaerts and Oscar Riesebeek broke away from a 15 man break with 22 km remaining, and Campenaerts came from behind to earn daily honors.
The GC standings saw no major movement on Sunday. We’ll learn a lot about who has power left in their legs on Monday. Bernal leads Simon Yates by 1:33, with Damiano Caruso in third place, 1:51 behind the lead. Aleksandr Vlasov is in fourth position, 1:57 back of Bernal. Hugh Carthy is 2:11 behind the leader in fifth place.
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Bernal was a significant favorite entering the race, and for over a week, since winning Stage 9 it has felt like his Giro to win. Even Yates has said so. That certainly doesn’t mean the former Tour de France champ needs to win on Monday in order to wear the pink jersey into Milan.
The bottom line is Bernal is working for a team, Ineos Grenadiers, that continues to dominate the sport. Formerly named Team Sky, Bernal and his teammates are the most well resourced, and successful squad over the past decade, and it isn’t close.
This is the sixth Giro for Davide Formolo. He has won one stage. The way he stole the day on Stage 4 in 2015 isn’t all that different than what he faces on Monday. That wasn’t the epic mountain stage that this is, but he got in the breakaway early, and then soloed to victory. Can he repeat that formula?
Formolo was the runner up last year in the Strade Bianche. He has finished in the Top-10 three times in Grand Tours.
Twenty nine year old Spaniard Antonio Pedrero is riding in his fifth straight Giro. Each year he has improved his overall standing. He is currently in 28th position, and one memorable day would certainly make his race.
He finished second in this year’s Vuelta Asturias.
Simon Yates is the biggest threat left in the overall standings to Bernal. The 28-year-old Brit has won stages on each Grand Tour, and is a more than capable climber. He won this year’s Tour of the Alps, which is the most mountain heavy Giro prep you can ride in.
Yates is in an amazing position to reach the podium. However, if he is going to contend to win the pink jersey, he needs to makeup serious ground. Is he prepared for a showdown on the toughest day of the race?
Though not at the Giro, we have seen Dan Martin do this before. He has taken two stages at the Tour de France, and a pair at the Vuelta a España.
Martin is a capable climber and has proven to be opportunistic. A one time Tour de France Combativity Award winner, if he is in the mix early on he could be dangerous at a nice price. Martin has finished among the Top-10 in five Grand Tours.
Dave Friedman has covered professional and college sports for two decades. From ESPN to the Associated Press, Regional Sports Networks, Metro Networks, and many local outlets, he has written about and broadcast major and minor events throughout the country.