Tour de San Luis (st. 5)
Italian repeats last year's success at Tour de San Luis TT by only four seconds, scores Movistar Team's second victory of 2015. Nairo Quintana jumps into 3rd overall
Adriano Malori (Movistar Team) repeated, with quite similar success to what happened twelve months ago, his victorious season debut against the clock at the 2015 Tour de San Luis ITT, 17.4km in and around the province's capital and up to the Terrazas del Portezuelo. While the Italian beat American Taylor Phinney (BMC) by only three seconds in 2014, just 4" were the gap between the Blues' national TT champion and runner-up Michal Kwiatkowski (EQS). Malori was 17" better after the opening 9km, into small downhill and favourable winds, later suffering under the headwind and the slopes leading up to the finish.
As Malori secured his 15th professional victory -his sixth in Movistar Team colours after the Argentinian TT in 2014, time trials in all Tirreno-Adriatico, Vuelta a España and National Champs plus the final road race of the Route du Sud-, attention in the finale focused on Nairo Quintana's chances to enter the GC podium. With Alex Diniz (FUN), 3rd before today's TT, not starting due to a stomach disease, the Colombian made a decent effort to finish 44" behind Malori and 12th for the day, coming into the provisional top-3 ahead of tomorrow's climbing showdown in the Filo Sierras Comechingones.
Adriano Malori: "I'm obviously really happy. There's no better way to start the season. 2014 was my best year as a pro cyclist and winning here gave me good luck for the rest of it, so I wanted to repeat that performance today. I hope this race is the beginning of another step forward in my progression. It wasn't easy at all to win today: I wasn't feeling really good and was dubious about my real level; besides, the heat played a huge impact, the wind also changed from the morning recon to this evening's race… all those things made it quite harder.
"To be honest, I started too fast, because that wind change didn't let me realize that the second part of the circuit would be harder than the downhill one. The last 7km after the U-turn, with the slopes and the headwind, were absolutely hellish. I knew that Kwiatkowski would be my biggest rival and beating him wasn't easy at all. Regarding the race finale, I hope that Nairo, whose form is improving day by day, can contest the stage win tomorrow. We will surely work for him. I want to dedicate this success to my love, Elisa, a big supporter of everything I do, who celebrates her birthday on Tuesday – this is for you."