What's the stage like?
Anomalous. Set amidst a brutal last week of climbing, a 146km flat stage seems somehow perverse: the opportunity for another win will have tantalised the sprinters, but how many of them - and their teams - will have the energy to capitalise on the opportunity?
For this reason, expect the early moves to make it into the breakaway to be hotly contested. Depleted sprint teams might mean that the peloton fails to bring back adventurers.
The course itself has two, category four climbs, and the finish is slightly downhill. The interesting point may be the final climb, the Muro Di Ca' Del Poggio, 48km out. Only 1km long, it is viciously steep. A buccaneering sort may fancy a long-range effort from there.
Who are the favourites?
Arnaud Demare (4.003/1) has been the most successful sprinter in the race - reflected in his now unassailable lead in the Points Competition - and is the rightful favourite for stage honours here. He has the advantage of being a sprinter who deals with the high mountains better than most, so should be less exhausted than his rivals. Whether he's value at those odds is doubtful, though.
Who are the most likely outsiders?
Mathieu van der Poel (7.5013/2) - if his antics on Stage 17 are anything to go by - thinks that every stage is within his reach and will no doubt be eyeing another audacious move here. If he makes a break on the last climb, he will be hard to rein in.
Likewise, Diego Ulissi (100.0099/1). He has previous in past Giros on courses like this and, despite the huge odds, should not be discounted (cue opportunity to promote the 30.0029/1-winning recommendation from Stage 17).
Mark Cavendish (8.007/1) should not be ignored either. Demare can rightly claim bragging rights so far, but the courses have been more in the Frenchman's favour. If Cavendish can stay in contention on that last climb, he could be a danger.
It's a day to keep stakes small and spread our interest.
What effect will it have on the overall markets?
Calamity aside, not much. It's a day for the General Classification contenders to survive and recover.
*Odds correct at the time of writing