As they follow the ridge of mountains that forms the backbone of the entire peninsula and splits Italy in two, Stages 9 and 10 of the Giro 101 take in the great iconic locations from the race’s history. The first and foremost of these being, of course, Campo Imperatore, the stunning Alpine meadow in the heart of the Gran Sasso massif, which Fosco Maraini described as “Italy’s mini Tibet”, and which will always be associated with Marco Pantani’s epic climb during the Giro of 1999. Having made its way across Campania, Molise and Abruzzo in Stage 9, the race moves into Marche and Umbria, arriving in the areas devastated by earthquakes in August and October of 2016 to pay homage to this stunningly beautiful but misfortunate area.
“We are moving forward with a mixture of difficulty and enthusiasm,” explains the Mayor of Caldarola, the Marche municipality damaged by the October 2016 earthquake, “because we see how we are being helped by so many. Like Enel, which donated a whole building to four evacuee families.” From there we went to Pieve Torina, where the school was rebuilt with the help of Enel Cuore to bring a semblance of normality back to day-to-day life, particularly for young people.
At 239 kilometres, Stage 10 is the longest in the entire Giro. It starts out from Penne in the Province of Pescara, Abruzzo, before traversing the Marche region to the finish-line in Umbria.
In this dynamic locality, know-how is interwoven with a flair for innovation. A good example of this combination is Fater, a Pescara company and leading personal hygiene product manufacturer, which has developed the world’s first industrial facility capable of recycling 100% of used personal absorbent products. This cutting-edge virtuous system is described in 100 Italian circular economy stories, a report on Italy’s circular economy excellence, curated by Enel and the Symbola Foundation.
Just a short distance away in Recanati in Marche we met with MAC Italia, a company that designs high tech solutions and with which we worked on developing “pole stations”, the public charging columns for electric cars.
Stage 10 finishes in the Umbrian town of Gualdo Tadino. An architectural gem which cycling fans will associate with “bell’Adolfo”, the road racer Adolfo Leoni who won the Milano-Sanremo, 17 stages of the Giro and one stage of the Tour de France, and was born in the town. “Bell’Adolfo”: the legs of a champion and the face of a matinee star.