It was freezing the morning of Day 6, but luckily the old army jackets were laying around in a pile at the camp. The best part of breakfast was that I was able to get some real espresso. While the racers were drinking instant coffee out of a large vat, the staff was feasting on real espresso and apparently I was looking especially bad this morning, because the cook offered me some. What a treat!!
We rolled out of the campground straight to a 20 minute chairlift ride which was really enjoyable. I sat and munched on a zone-bar, warm and cozy in my army jacket while checking out the amazing view of the ski resort. The special stage began when we got off the lift, went straight back down the mountain past the camp where we had started. We rode next to a big river for a while and eventually started climbing again. After about an hour I caught Katia, Fabritzio, and another guy Danny. We had a great day! Since I was over 200o points ahead, I decided to ride with them for the rest of the day and enjoy, instead of killing myself. Fabritzio continued to entertain us and I was happy to slow down the pace a bit.
We finished the day together at a youth camp in the town of Cesana. No one finished within the 8 hour target time that day. After we set the tent up and stood in line for one of the 4 showers, it started raining. It was actually pouring. We walked down the stairs to the small campground and noticed that our tent was sitting in a huge water puddle and all of our stuff was wet. Luckily, we had the tent we were given by Ironbike, so we set that up in a different spot and were able to keep our sleeping pads and bags from getting completely soaked. At this point I was having some serious stomach issues and had to go and visit the race doctor who have me some pro-biotics to neutralize the bacteria in my stomach. Thank goodness it worked so I could stay off the squat-toilet!
At the race meeting Fabritzio informed us that the plan was still to ride up Chaberton, the 3100 meter mountain between Italy and France, the next day. Unless there was a lightning storm the course would remain the same, and we would find out about that in the morning.
We had a pretty bad night's sleep in our damp mini-tent. I was coughing like crazy and it was pouring rain outside.