Penultimate weekend of racing
Spanish champion from Movistar Team proves his consistency and good form en route to Il Lombardia with great performance towards San Luca, where Roglic (TJV) dominates.
The Giro dell’Emilia was the main focus for the Movistar Team on Saturday, as six of the Blue ladies rode for the Spanish national team at the women’s race –where Eider Merino finished in 9th– and, once again, a strong Alejandro Valverde notably featured in the men’s event (207km), covering along against strong teams the final laps around San Luca in Bologna (2km at nearly 10% avg. gradient).
Supported by Jaime Castrillo as he pulled at the front before the circuit, the Spanish champion neutralized with an attack, three laps before the end, a dangerous move with Sepp Kuss, George Bennett (TJV), Diego Rosa (INS) and Diego Ulissi (UAD), and later tried to escape after the penultimate ascent from the final selection of 12.
Primoz Roglic (TJV) took a resounding win ahead of the EF duo composed by Michael Woods (2nd) and Sergio Higuita (3rd), as Alejandro, who had to spend lots of energy with his previous moves, still notched up a fine 5th, 17″ behind the La Vuelta winner.
The Telefónica-backed squad’s big leader will return to racing with his team-mates -the Emilia roster, plus Carlos Barbero replacing Jaime Castrillo- at Sunday’s GP Beghelli, more suited to faster legs.
Cover picture (c): BettiniPhoto