The Giro d’Italia’s Mortirolo climb is to be dedicated to former Astana rider Michele Scarponi, who died while out training.
He had been due to lead Astana’s campaign in place of the injured Fabio Aru, with the team announcing on Sunday they would go one rider short to honour the Italian’s memory.
And further tributes are planned during this year’s 100th edition of the Giro.
“The Giro d’Italia can’t forget a great champion, a big friend and a great man who was set to take part in the Corsa Rosa for the 12th time this year,” a release on the race’s official website said.
“Therefore, a tribute will be paid to him with one of the iconic climbs of this year’s race dedicated to him: the Mortirolo.
“On stage 16 from Rovetta to Bormio, Tuesday 23 May, the King of the Mountains points awarded to the rider who passes the Mortirolo in first position will be doubled compared to what was originally planned in the race regulations. He will also be honoured on stage on the final podium of the Giro in Milan.
“Moreover, in Sardinia, Scarponi’s Astana team will be first to be introduced to the crowd on Thursday 4 May at 6.30pm in Alghero, when a special moment will be dedicated to his memory.
“The following day, at the start of stage 1, the pink caravan will observe a minute’s silence before the flag off. The Astana team will be on the front line of the bunch for the very first part of the course. The name of Michele Scarponi will thus be associated with the 100th edition of the Giro d’Italia.”
Scarponi was awarded the Giro’s general classification title in 2011 after Alberto Contador was stripped of the title for doping offences.