Strade Bianche route adds two new gravel sectors and increases men's distance to 215km

Repeated final loop brings total sectors up to 15 with 70km off-road, plus additions to women's route

Clock12:02, Tuesday 30th January 2024
The peloton takes on the white gravel roads of Strade Bianche

© Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images

The peloton takes on the white gravel roads of Strade Bianche

The routes for the 2024 Strade Bianche feature new gravel sectors and an added distance to the men’s race that takes the Italian Classic to over 200km in length for the first time in its history.

The 2024 men’s and women’s routes, which were officially announced on Tuesday, both include a new finishing loop added before the Siena finale. This features two new sectors and will see the peloton take on two existing sectors - at Colle Pinzuto and Le Tolfe - twice instead of once.

This means the men's route now has 13 distinct off-road sectors and 15 in total, compared to 11 in previous years.

Read more: Does gravel belong in the Tour de France? Off-road stage of 2024 route divides opinion

The added final loop, which will see the riders head north and back east from San Miniato instead of directly south to Siena, adds an extra 30km to the route and takes the total to 214.8km.

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This is the first time that the men’s race crosses the 200km mark and brings its length more in line with the Monuments, which are all over 240km long, perhaps bolstering Strade Bianche’s claims on being the unofficial sixth Monument.

The first of the two new sectors of the eponymous 'white roads' comes 30km from the finish just outside the village of Colombaiolo, measuring 1.1km in length on largely flat terrain. The second is just under 15km later, and is 3.3km long, starting on a rise and then going slightly downhill as the road leaves San Giovanni a Ceretto.

A look on Google Maps shows the Colombaiolo sector as narrow with fairly rough gravel, tightly bordered on each side by bankings and foliage, with much of the sector under the shade of trees.

The San Giovanni a Ceretto sector is much wider, and starts on a climb before the gradient levels out towards a slight downhill. The gravel appears on the more forgiving end of the spectrum when it comes to Strade Bianche sectors.

Read more: Remco Evenepoel’s secret mission to recon Tour de France gravel stages and time trial

In total, the two added sectors and the repetition of Colle Pinzuto and Le Tolfe brings the total kilometres spent off-road to almost exactly 70km, up from 63km in 2023. In comparison, Paris-Roubaix sees the riders spend around 55km on cobbles out of a total 260km.

Apart from the added loop, the rest of the course remains almost totally unchanged from 2023, barring a small detour in the first 10km before the gravel starts, and another subtle rerouting just prior to the Montalcino climb.

The women’s race will also take on the new finishing loop and the additional sectors, but the women’s route has had sections cut out elsewhere, so the length of the route remains similar, just over one kilometre longer than the 2023 edition at 137km.

The women’s race will take on a total of 12 gravel sectors, up from eight in 2023, so in many ways it is a more significant step up for the women’s peloton, though they still notably skip the Montalcino climb. The total off-road tally for the women’s race is 39.1km.

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