Volcanic Ash Cloud Threatens Giro d’Italia
Upon the eruption of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano, air travel was suspended and this greatly affected the spring Classics. Now, the ash cloud from April moved further south and forced airports in the northern part of Italy to temporarily close.
The Giro d’Italia riders are supposed to fly back to Italy at two chartered flights. After tomorrow’s stage, the contenders will ride a bus to Ostend Belgium. From there, they will fly to Cuneo which is located in northern Italy. However, the operations for airports are still suspended in that area.
Should the ominous ash cloud continue to hover over northern Italy, the Giro’s organizers would need to come up with a back-up plan as to the riders’ travel options.
The possibility of a bus ride for the entire 22 teams with the Giro d’Italia supporting staff will surely interrupt the upcoming days planned ahead for the event. A change of the chartered flights to an airport located closer to where the stage will begin can cut the bus ride’s duration. Although there was no talk of cancellation of the 32.5 kilometer team trial which is scheduled on Wednesday among the race organizers, this could be considered as the last alternative.
Once it is decided that the race will travel by bus on the ride to Italy, all the teams shall travel on the same vehicle to avoid disparity and out of fairness. The convenience of both the smaller teams, who could not afford expensive, posh team buses unlike larger teams, should also be considered.