Alejandro Valverde becomes again big amusement in GP Nobili as Lobato (4th) comes close to podium in Italy. Fine breakaway by debutant Anacona and Enrique Sanz; Dowsett and Sutherland happily back
The Movistar Team spent their Thursday in northern Italy for the usual appetizer of Sunday's Milano-Sanremo: the 18th GP Nobili, which local Giacomo Nizzolo (TFR) claimed into a mass sprint where Juanjo Lobato finished in fourth spot.
The squad directed by José Luis Jaimerena featured prominently in all phases of a crazily fast race, its first three hours covered at a whooping 48.3kph average for a total exceeding 46.7. Enrique Sanz and Winner Anacona eventually entered the day's big break of almost thirty riders after more than 80km of restless fighting. The group shrank to only seven men ahead, including the Colombian from the telephone squad, at the top of the first climb towards Massino Visconti, the highest point of the day.
Caught at the foot of the second passage, Alejandro Valverde broke the bunch into pieces at the final ascent with a powerful attack together with Italian Davide Rebellin (CCC), a move caught by the bunch with 8km to go. The Blues, always covering Lobato with Antón, Sütterlin and 'debutants' Dowsett and Sutherland, recovered from their respective injuries, unsuccessfully tried to control the pace for the Spaniard, who will be back for the Classicissima in less than 72 hours' time.