High-speed racing on the Poggio means sprinters miss out at Milan-San Remo

Caleb Ewan during Milan-San Remo 2019

The warm spring weather and steady pace for much of Milan-San Remo seemed set to help the sprinters dominate this year’s La Classicissima , but in truth, it led to their downfall. The attackers were still strong and confident on the Poggio, and so able to blow the race apart and share the spoils on the Via Roma. Eventual winner, Julian Alaphilippe ( Deceuninck-QuickStep ) sparked the decisive selection of seven riders in the final kilometre of the Poggio, with only Vincenzo Nibali and Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida), Simon Clarke (EF Education First) and Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) able to get on during the descent and the final flat roads in San Remo. The pure sprinters and their teammates were distanced and dropped, leaving just 11 riders to fight for victory. Few noticed but Alexander Kristoff ( UAE Team Emirates ) won the bunch sprint for 14th place on the Via ...

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Top 10 for Trentin after trying his luck in closing stages of Milan-San Remo

European champion Matteo Trentin consults with the Mitchelton-Scott team car.

European road race champion Matteo Trentin ( Mitchelton-Scott ) tried to escape the clutches of the leading group at Milan-San Remo on Saturday by jumping away with just two kilometres to go, only to be chased down by three-time cyclo-cross world champion Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), and eventually finishing 10th. The Italian played his card inside the final couple of kilometres, and for a moment looked as though he might have opened up a large enough gap to hold off his rivals, only to look back with just over a kilometre to go to see the canary-yellow-clad Van Aert bringing him back. Once the front group was back together again, it was the turn of Bahrain-Merida's Matej Mohoric to try his luck with an attack, and while Trentin could then sit in the wheels while the Slovenian road race champion was brought to heel, ensuring that he'd be in the ...

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Milan-San Remo highlights: Alaphilippe’s masterclass

Julian Alaphilippe shows off the new Deceuninck-Quick-Step jersey

The yearly seven-hour battle between the sprinters and puncheurs that is Milan-San Remo has once again come and gone, and for 2019 we can strike another one up to the latter – the third in a row for that most versatile of rider groupings. Julian Alaphilippe ( Deceuninck-Quick Step ) was the man to continue the mini-streak on Saturday afternoon, pulling off a masterful display in the finale. The Frenchman was ably aided by his powerful Quick Step team on the final climb of the day, the legendary Poggio, before launching over the top. He wasn’t alone though – far from it, in fact. The best of the best had joined him, with the last two winners Michał Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) and Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) up there, along with legends of the modern era Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), among others. After navigating the potential treachery of the ...

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Mohoric: I thought Colbrelli was with me but it was Nibali

Slovenian champion Matej Mohoric will be back for a second year with Bahrain-Merida in 2019.

Confusion and disappointment were the two overriding feelings for Matej Mohorič ( Bahrain-Merida ) as he ground to a halt on the Via Roma after an almost seven-hour effort in Milan-San Remo . On the face of it, fifth on the line – his best result in three attempts – was a fine result for the 24-year-old, but after confusion in the finale the Slovenian powerhouse only saw the race as a missed opportunity. Mohorič had done everything right for most of the day. He was there or thereabouts when Julian Alaphilippe and his Deceuninck-Quick Step team blew the race to pieces on the Poggio, and then regained contact with the elite lead group on the descent before the flat-run in. When there was a general regrouping with just over a kilometer remaining, Mohorič even began to ghost off the front of the lead group. He was quickly caught but ...

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Alaphilippe Wins Milan San Remo

Deceuninck Quick-Step Rider Bags His First Monument Julian Alaphilippe won Milan San-Remo on Saturday afternoon, comfortably winning a sprint from a group of ten that went clear over the top of the Poggio. He was joined on the podium by Olivier Naesen and Michal Kwiatkowski. This year’s first monument went according to the script, with a large break given plenty of room on the road and building up a sizable gap. The ten riders, including six Italians and four representatives of Novo Nordisk, were steadily reeled back in as the race hit the coast in perfect weather. Quick Step, UAE, Lotto Soudal and Groupama-FDJ were among the teams working at the front and by the foot of the Cipressa only Fausto Masnada was left in front. Getty Images Masnada was caught on the earliest slopes of the penultimate climb and there were few fireworks on the climb, though a daring ...

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Alaphilippe wins Milan-San Remo

Julian Alaphilippe lets out a roar

It may have been the first Monument of the season, but the story was the one we’ve seen so often already this year. Some 175 men fought for half the day to win a bike race, and Julian Alaphilippe ( Deceuninck-QuickStep ) ended up on the top step of the podium. Milan-San Remo is the seventh victory of the season for the Frenchman, and the 19th for his team - no doubt the sweetest yet. Part of an elite group contesting the win in San Remo, Alaphilippe beat Oliver Naesen ( AG2R La Mondiale ) and Michał Kwiatkowski ( Team Sky ) to the top spot after a tense sprint to the line. The Frenchman had played a major part in forming the elite group that made it to the finish, launching an attack over the top of Poggio and bringing a number of the strongest men in the sport ...

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Follow Milan-San Remo on Saturday live with Cyclingnews

The Milan-San Remo podium

The 110th running of Milan-San Remo is set to roll Saturday morning in Italy, and you can follow all of the action here on Cyclingnews with our live report . The first Monument of the 2019 season is another wide-open affair, with even the pre-race favourites like Greg Van Avermaet (CCC Team), Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) and defending champion Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) admitting 'La Primavera' is a race that just about any type of rider can win in any manner of ways, from a bunch sprint, a small group or a solo breakaway. This year's start list includes former champions Nibali, Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky), Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ), John Degenkolb (Trek-Segafredo) and Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates). Also among the expected favourites are Julian Alaphilippe and Elia Viviani from Deceuninck-QuickStep, Caleb Ewan from Lotto Soudal, Matteo Trentin from Mitchelton-Scott, Dylan Groenewegen from Jumbo-Visma and Fernando Gaviria from UAE Team Emirates. The ...

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Jonny Clarke wraps up GC win at Tour de Taiwan

Floyd's Pro Cycling's Jonny Clarke in yellow on the Tour de Taiwan podium

Jonny Clarke 's debut with the new Floyd's Pro Cycling team got off to the best possible start this week when the Australian won a stage and the general classification at the Tour de Taiwan, a five-day UCI 2.1 race that finished Thursday in Pingtung. Clarke won the 118.9km second stage from Taoyuan to Jiaobanshan Park, a relatively flat day of racing that included some altitude gain at the end. Clarke won from a reduced bunch sprint after out-pacing Giovanni Lonardi ( Nippo Vini Fantini Faizanè ) and Nathan Earle (Israel Cycling Academy) up the final ramp. Clarke's win came days after the team's Noah Granigan won the team's first US calendar race at the Redlands Bicycle Classic in California. Granigan took the USA Cycling Pro Road Tour stage win by infiltrating a successful breakaway during the stage 4 downtown Redlands criterium and outfoxing his rivals in the final sprint. ...

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Defending Milan-San Remo champion Nibali leads strong Bahrain-Merida team

Caleb Ewan, Vincenzo Nibali and Arnaud Demare on the Milan-San Remo podium

The winner of last year's Milan-San Remo , Vincenzo Nibali , will lead a strong Bahrain-Merida squad at this year's race on Saturday, and says that he's feeling his form is getting better all the time. The Italian's last race was Tirreno-Adriatico – the traditional build-up race for Milan-San Remo – where he finished 15th overall, and clearly not yet at his best this season. "I'm happy with the 'signals' I got from Tirreno-Adriatico because they showed that my condition is improving," Nibali said on his team's website. Nibali attacked with six kilometres to go at last year's race, soloing to a memorable victory as the bunch bore down on him, with runner-up Caleb Ewan and third-placed Arnaud Démare not quite able to catch him on the line. Nibali will be supported by a strong team that includes Sonny Colbrelli, Matej Mohoric, Marcel Sieberg, and Heinrich Haussler, who finished second ...

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Anti-fracking group to protest at Tour de Yorkshire over Team Ineos 'greenwashing'

Anti-fracking group to protest at Tour de Yorkshire over Team Ineos 'greenwashing'

Joe Robinson 21 Mar 2019 Ineos holds the rights to frack for shale gas across multiple sites in Yorkshire The introduction of Team Ineos into the professional peloton at the Tour de Yorkshire is set to be greeted with protests by anti-fracking campaigners. Ineos announced its purchase of Tour Racing Limited , the holding company of Team Sky, on Tuesday with the team to appear in its new guise for the first time at Stage 1 of the Tour de Yorkshire on May 2nd. The multi-billion pound chemical company, headed by Britain's richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe, currently has a license to frack for shale gas across multiple sites in the county of Yorkshire. Ratcliffe is an ardent supporter of fracking and has vocally criticised government efforst to regulate the method of drilling for oil. Ineos is yet to start fracking operations due to planning disputes and protests. Anti-fracking group ...

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Van Avermaet: Milan-San Remo is easy to finish but hard to win

Greg Van Avermaet of CCC Team attends a press conference ahead of the 74th Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

Greg Van Avermaet ( CCC Team ) is ready to take another crack at Milan-San Remo on Saturday after having twice finished inside the top 10, including fifth in the 2016 race won by Arnaud Démare in a large bunch sprint. The first Monument race of 2019 is a 291km test that finishes in San Remo along the Via Roma. Van Avermaet has so far this season taken just one win, stage 3 at the Volta a Valenciana in Spain, but he's shown he's on form for the Classics with second at Omloop het Nieuwsblad and sixth at Strade Bianche. Van Avermaet is hoping a week of racing in Italy at Tirreno-Adriatico has sharpened the form for the long day ahead on Saturday. "I felt really good at Tirreno-Adriatico and I take a lot of confidence from the legs I had at the end of those long stages we did ...

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Contract talks between Nibali and Bahrain stall

Vuincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida)

Negotiations between Vincenzo Nibali and Bahrain-Merida show no signs of re-opening with both parties still at loggerheads over the terms of a possible contract extension. The 34-year-old is out of contract at the end of 2019, and although an offer was put on the table by the Bahrain Merida management last season it remains unsigned as Nibali waits for improved terms. Meanwhile, speculation linking the 2018 Milan-San Remo winner with Trek-Segafedo continues to grow, with Bahrain Merida believing that the star GC rider met with the Italian team during Tirreno-Adriatico. Segafredo are reported to be keen on signing Nibali and made an approach to discuss a move several months ago. That interest has only intensified in recent weeks . "There hasn't been any further negotiations and we're still sitting where we were about a month ago," Bahrain Merida's Brent Copeland told Cyclingnews on Monday, during a brief visit to McLaren ...

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Vincenzo Nibali: This is the suffering I need

Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida)

Vincenzo Nibali ( Bahrain-Merida ) has had a fairly quiet start to the season, but the Italian said that his opening races were providing him with 'the suffering I need'. He admitted that he would like to be going better at this point in the season, but with the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France double on his programme this season, it has been difficult. Nibali was one of a number of overall contenders that lost time on stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico , finishing 23 seconds down on the race leader Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott). He is now almost two minutes down in the general classification with a podium position a far-flung dream. Nibali said that it has been difficult to see his rivals go up the road, but he is trying to keep a positive perspective on it. "This is the suffering I need," he told Gazzetta dello Sport . ...

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UCI backtracks on fines after riders threaten to protest

The riders are presented in Dubai

The UCI has backtracked on applying stiff fines and ranking point penalties if riders arrive late at race sign-on after the peloton threatened to go on strike before the final stage of the UAE Tour . The UCI changed the rules of the sign-on protocol for the 2019 season because riders often stayed on their team buses and arrived en-masse in the final minutes before the start of races. That offered little interest to the local crowds and left race organisers embarrassed. Riders were previously obliged to sign on at a specific time on the opening stage of a race. Now race organisers can force teams to respect a time slot on every stage in the 70 minutes before a stage start. UAE Tour organiser RCS Sport issued a daily schedule for the new WorldTour race but several failed to respect their time slots, sparking a strong reaction from the ...

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Van Avermaet upbeat despite losing out to Alaphilippe at Tirreno

Greg Van Avermaet (Team CCC) drops back to the team car in Tirreno.

Greg Van Avermaet ( CCC Team ) had to settle for second place on stage 2 of Tirreno-Adriatico on Thursday, when he was beaten to the line in an uphill sprint by Deceuninck-QuickStep's Julian Alaphilippe . "It was quite a good pace the whole day long," Van Avermaet said on his team's website. "Mitchelton-Scott controlled the race, and Gijs [Van Hoecke] and Guillaume [Van Keirsbulck] set me up really well for the last climb. "Actually, everything went perfectly for me. Michi [Michael Schär] did a good job closing some gaps, and I just tried to stay out of the wind for as long as possible, and then came to the front in the last two kilometres," he said. "For me, the stage couldn't have gone better, and we executed our plan exactly as we said we would in the meeting. When you get second place, it's sad, but it's the ...

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Tour of California announces 2019 teams

The Tour of California takes off from Pismo Beach in 2015

Organisers of the Amgen Tour of California men's and women's races released their 2019 team rosters today, with both races featuring multiple returning champions to battle it out past iconic California landmarks and up some of the state's most notorious climbs. The Amgen Tour of California men's race will feature the US national team for the first time this year when the race rolls out of Sacramento. USA Cycling will field a roster of riders whose trade teams aren't competing in the race, joining 18 other teams on the roads from the start in the Golden State's capitol on May 12 to the finish in Pasadena on May 18. Thirteen WorldTour teams have signed up for the men's race in its third year on the WorldTour calendar, joining five Pro Continental teams and the US national team to form the biggest men's field yet. Defending champion Egan Bernal (Team Sky) ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Dumoulin stays in overall contention after TTT

Tom Dumoulin on the front for Team Sunweb at Tirreno-Adriatico

Tom Dumoulin admitted before Tirreno-Adriatico that losing 25 seconds or more in the opening team time trial would probably end his chance of overall victory in the week-long stage race. While not happy with Team Sunweb 's third place, 22 seconds behind Mitchelton-Scott and 15 down on Jumbo-Visma, the Dutchman was pleased to still be in contention and ready to race aggressively in the number of steep uphill finishes later in the race. "Third, it's good, not perfect. It's a good start and we're, I won't say happy with it, but satisfied," Dumoulin said as he warmed down on the rollers, seeing Team Sunweb's glass half full rather than half empty. As team leader and former world time trial champion, Dumoulin took on extra responsibility during Team Sunweb's ride. He did longer turns on the front, leading and inspiring his teammates. Chad Haga brought Team Sunweb home, with Dumoulin second, ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico stars gather on eve of race – Gallery

Julian Alaphilippe pokes fun at Geraint Thomas with the Tirreno-Adriatico trident

Tirreno-Adriatico rolls off the starting blocks on Wednesday with a 21.5km team time trial in Lido di Camaiore, and some of the top riders gathered on Tuesday to talk about their own ambitions in the seven-day WorldTour race that finishes on March 19 with an individual time trial in San Benedetto del Tronto. The favourites for the overall, including Geraint Thomas (Team Sky), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), Jumbo-Visma's Primoz Roglic, Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) and recent Strade Bianche winner Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep), gathered on Tuesday to speak with the media and give the race a proper set-up. Defending champion Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) is currently battling the crosswinds at Paris-Nice, leaving the race open for a brand-new winner or a potential third victory for Nibali. The race lacks any true mountains this year, eschewing summit finishes in favour of a number of short, steep Classics-like climbs that will measure gradients in ...

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Paris-Nice: Stage 2 race highlights – Video

Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) kept the leader's red jersey

Dylan Groenewegen ( Jumbo-Visma ) continued his winning streak by taking victory on a chaotic stage 2 of Paris-Nice . The Dutchman beat Bahrain-Merida's Ivan Garcia Cortina and Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck-QuickStep) after a frantic day of racing in which the peloton split several times due to crosswinds and crashes. In the end, an eight-man break moved clear of the peloton inside the final kilometres, with Team Sky best represented through Luke Rowe, Egan Bernal and Michal Kwiatkowski. While a number of GC riders faltered in the conditions – and Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First) and Warren Barguil (Arkea-Samsic) both crashed – Groenewegen kept himself in contention before unleashing an unstoppable sprint to solidify his position as the race leader after two stages. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

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Paris-Nice: Groenewegen wins stage 2

Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) wins stage 2 of Paris-Nice.

Dylan Groenewegen ( Jumbo-Visma ) survived another dramatic day to make it two wins out of two at Paris-Nice . The race leader gave it everything to stay out in the front group to beat Ivan Garcia Cortina (Bahrain-Merida) and Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck-QuickStep) in Bellegarde on stage 2. With his second win, Groenewegen keeps hold of the overall race lead for at least another day. He leads Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) by 12 seconds after the Polish rider came back from a puncture to make it into a select leading group, with Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) another second behind in third place overall. "Our team did a very good job, putting me in a great position. It was very hard, and there were just seven of us left at the end, and then I saw the line – but I was waiting and waiting. [Matteo] Trentin was going, and I ...

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