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SANREMO’22: Magic Mohorič Drops Like A Stone!

‘La Classicissima’ Race Report: The break of the day was caught at the bottom of the Poggio and the race was on. Tadej Pogačar put in multi-big attacks, but it was Matej Mohorič who went for the solo win on the Poggio descent. The Bahrain rider held off the chasers for the ‘other’ Slovenian to be Victorious.

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Big win for Matej Mohorič

Matej Mohorič won the 2022 Milan-San Remo. The Slovenian champion broke away on the descent of the Poggio to win his first monument. Anthony Turgis and Mathieu van der Poel joined him on the podium.

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The start from the Maspes-Vigorelli Velodrome

Route:
Milano-Sanremo runs along the classic route that for more than 110 years has connected Milan with the western Riviera through Pavia, Ovada, the Passo del Turchino that leads into Genua Voltri. From there, it rolls westwards through Varazze, Savona, Albenga to Imperia and San Lorenzo al Mare where, after the classic sequence of the Capi (Mele, Cervo and Berta), the athletes will deal with the two climbs added in recent decades: the Cipressa (1982) and the Poggio di Sanremo (1961). The Cipressa is just over 5.6km long with a gradient of 4.1%. The highly testing descent leads back down to SS 1 Aurelia.

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Milano-Sanremo profile

The important final kilometres:
The ascent of Poggio di Sanremo begins with 9km remaining to the finish (3.7km, average gradient less than 4%, maximum 8% in the segment before getting to the top of the climb). The road is slightly narrower, with 4 hairpin turns in the first 2 km. The descent is testing, on asphalt switchback roads, narrow at points and with twists and turns as far as the junction with SS 1 Aurelia. The final part of the descent enters urban Sanremo. The last 2km are on long, straight urban roads. There is a left-hand bend on a roundabout 850m from the finish line. The last bend, leading into the home straight in Via Roma, is 750m from the finish line.

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The final Ks

The riders had only just left the official start when the first riders attacked. The peloton didn’t make much effort and we immediately had the ‘Break of the Day’. A group of eight riders got together: Yevgeni Gidich and Artyom Zakharov (Astana Qazaqstan), Filippo Tagliani and Ricardo Alejandro Zurita (Drone Hopper-Androni Giocattoli), Samuele Rivi and Diego Pablo Sevilla (EOLO-Kometa), Filippo Conca (Lotto Soudal) and Alessandro Tonelli (Bardiani-CSF Faizane).

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Through the Milan streets with those dodgy tramlines

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Mathieu van der Poel on the start line

Four Italians, two Kazakhs and two Spaniards made the escape. Jumbo-Visma put Jos van Emden on the front of the peloton to set the pace as the break took a good 5 minutes. In the first hour the race covered 45.7 kilometres.

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The start proper

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The ‘Break of the Day’ Yevgeni Gidich & Artyom Zakharov (Astana Qazaqstan), Filippo Tagliani & Ricardo Alejandro Zurita (Drone Hopper-Androni Giocattoli), Alessandro Tonelli (Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè), Samuele Rivi & Diego Pablo Sevilla (EOLO-Kometa) and Filippo Conca (Lotto Soudal)

With 200 kilometres to go to the finish in San Remo, the breakaways’ lead hit 6 minutes. At the head of the peloton Van Emden had been the engine for the chase. The 37 year-old Dutchman had been responsible for the pace of most La Primavera so far.

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Radio problems for Tom Pidcock

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Peter Sagan (TotalEnergies) and Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma)

On the Passo del Turchino, Van Emden received some help from Rein Taaramäe of Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert, who set the pace on the descent. At 115 kilometres out, there was the first big crash, although no favourites was involved. The race carried on with Van Emden still setting the pace.

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The peloton didn’t chase too hard, but all the top teams had a rider at the front

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Top favourite – Wout van Aert

The pace started to lift as the peloton was getting close to the first of the three Capi, the Capo Mele. Trains formed for good positions at the start the three climbs. On the third Capo, the Capo Berta, there was no more cooperation in the break. For the five leaders that remained, the lead came down to less than 4 minutes. In the peloton, Tom Pidcock, one of the pre-race favourites, was dropped on the ascent of the Capo Berta.

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Following the river to the sea

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At last, the coast road to Sanremo

Just before the Cipressa, Peter Sagan had to deal with a chain problem and had to change bikes, this was bad timing for the Slovak. The front riders had a lead of 2 minutes at the foot of the Cipressa, where the speed went up yet another notch. UAE Team Emirates were seen at the front for the first time, as Davide Formolo set a very tough pace.

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It seemed like Jumbo-Visma’s Jos Van Emden had been on the front for 200 kilometres

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Passing a cruise ship on the Costa Toscana

Fabio Jakobsen had to let go of the peloton, the Dutch sprinter was unable to hold the pace. The peloton by now had thinned out to about 30 riders. To the foot of the Poggio, it was UAE Team Emirates at the front of the bunch with Tonelli and Rivi still holding them off.

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Into the last 70K and the speed started to lift in the peloton

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The pressure started to rise

When the race turned up the Poggio, it was Christophe Laporte, with Wout van Aert on his wheel, who accelerated. The last two escapees were immediately caught. All the favourites were perfectly positioned. Diego Ulissi then took the lead, with Tadej Pogačar in his wheel.

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A fast day started to get even faster

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The Capo (Mele, Cervo and Berta) would start to come in the last 60K

Eight kilometres from the finish, the Slovenian decided it was time to attack. Van Aert was immediately on his wheel, and when Van der Poel joined them, the pace dropped again. Not long afterwards, Pogačar went again, but the acceleration was not enough to shake his competitors off his wheel. Third attack from Pogačar again wasn’t fast enough. The same was also the case for Primož Roglič’s move.

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There was a battle for the teams to get to the front

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Pogačar kept attacking

It was Søren Kragh Andersen who made the first real gap. The Dane had Pogačar with him and Van der Poel and Van Aert managed to rejoin. On the descent of the Poggio the rest of the group caught them. Matej Mohorič showed his descending skills and took a small lead. The Slovenian took a lot of risks and stretched his few seconds lead to a handful.

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It wasn’t Jumbo-Visma’s day, but Mathieu van der Poel was third

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It was Soren Kragh Andersen who split the leaders

Mohorič managed to hold his gap to the finish. Anthony Turgis made a desperate attempt behind and got very close, but it wasn’t good enough. Van der Poel finished in a very good third place. Pogačar finished fifth, Van Aert eighth.

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Crazy descent for Mohorič

2022 Milano-Sanremo winner, Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious): “I’ve been thinking about this race for the whole winter. I’ve worked on being in good shape for Milano-Sanremo even though I got sick in February and I crashed at Strade Bianche. I never stopped believing I could win. My plan was to do my best descent and risk it a little bit. I went full gas. It’s amazing to win Milano-Sanremo!”

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A perfect finish for Mohorič

Milano-Sanremo Result:
1. Matej Mohorič (Slo) Bahrain Victorious in 6:27:49
2. Anthony Turgis (Fra) TotalEnergies at 0:02
3. Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix
4. Michael Matthews (Aus) BikeExchange-Jayco
5. Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates
6. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo
7. Soren Kragh Andersen (Nor) DSM
8. Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma
9. Jan Tratnik (Slo) Movistar at 0:05
10. Arnaud Démare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ at 0:11
11. Vincenzo Albanese (Ita) Eolo-Kometa
12. Biniam Girmay (Eri) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
13. Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Movistar
14. Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl
15. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Bahrain Victorious
16. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) INEOS Grenadiers
17. Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
18. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Israel-Premier Tech at 0:21
19. Lorenzo Rota (Ita) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
20. Quentin Pacher (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
21. Krists Neilands (Lat) Israel-Premier Tech at 0:26
22. Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma at 0:59
23. Ivan Garcia Cortina (Spa) Movistar at 1:05
24. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 1:09
25. Michael Valgren (Den) EF Education-EasyPost at 1:13.

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