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San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Trek Factory Racing) pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016

San Sebastián’16: Magic Mollema!

Photo Race Report: Trek-Segafredo’s Bauke Mollema made up for his Tour de France disappointment by winning the Clasicá San Sebastián in the Basque Country of Northern Spain on Saturday. As always the hilly race was hard fought with many of the stars of the Tour on the start list.

Mollema used the final climb of the Murgil Tontorra, 8 kilometers out, to make his winning attack and hold off fast chasing previous winners; Tony Gallopin (Lotto Soudal) and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) at 17 seconds. Katusha’s Joaquim Rodriguez was fourth, 22 seconds later and Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) brought in a group of five at 34 seconds for 5th.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Trek Factory Racing)  pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016A well planned win for Bauke Mollema

The course for the 2016 Clasicá San Sebastián was as hilly as usual with the added final climb of the Murgil Tontorra on the finishing lap, coming after the climbs of the Jaizkibel and Arkale.

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The first break of the day included: Moreno Moser (Cannondale-Drapac), Mario Costa (Lampre-Merida), Pirmin Lang (IAM Cycling), Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (Dimension Data), Jamie Roson (Cajal Rural-Seguros RGA) and Loic Chetout (Cofidis). They built up a nice lead over the Jaizkibel and the Arkale, but were caught the second time up the Jaizkibel. Dario Cataldo (Astana) and Mikel Landa (Sky) were next to try, but the peloton were not happy with the two strong riders and pulled them back after the descent of the Jaizkibel.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  illustration - sfeer - illustratie  pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016A day at the beach

Cannondale-Drapac looked very strong on the Arkale climb with 30km to go, but their efforts came to nothing and Movistar took back control as the race headed back to San Sebastián and for the finalé.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  Alberto Contador Velasco (Spain / Team Tinkoff - Tinkov)  pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016Alberto Contador will be looking for Vuelta form

Onto the final 20km lap and Orica-BikeExchange came to the front to lift the speed for the Yates brothers, Adam and Simon, to make the attack on the steep 20% slopes of the Murgil Tontorra. But it was Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) who made the first move. Mollema jumped after ‘Purito’ with Valverde and Gallopin on his wheel.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -   Joaquin Rodriguez Oliver (Spain / Team Katusha) pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016Joaquim ‘Purito’ Rodriguez (Katusha) made the first move on the final climb

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Trek Factory Racing) - Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spain / Team Movistar) pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016Mollema had Valverde for company on the final climb

Mollema then made his move and as the others hesitated, he consolidated his lead and rode to the finish in time trial mode.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  George Bennett (N. Seeland / Team LottoNL - Jumbo) - Roman Kreuziger (Czech-Republic / Team Tinkoff - Tinkov)  pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016George Bennett (LottoNl-Jumbo) and Roman Kreuziger (Tinkoff) were at the front on the climb, but it was too late

As usual; Alejandro Valverde didn’t contribute to the chase hoping that he would be towed to the finish and take the win. Mollema had a 10 second lead as he hit the City streets and added a further 7 seconds by the time he crossed the line. In the sprint for second Tony Gallopin (Lotto Soudal) got the better of Valverde and Rodriguez held off the chase group for 4th.

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Warren Barguil (France / Team Giant - Alpecin)   pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016Warren Barguil was happy with a coke at the top of the final climb

After his near crash on the wet stage to Saint-Gervais Mont Blanc in the Tour de France, which robbed him of a podium place, his win in San Sebastián should send him on his way to Rio for the Olympic road race with hope of a medal.

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Race winner Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo): “The last days of the Tour de France were really disappointing for me, and this was a good way to fight back. I recovered well from the Tour, and I am really happy to win, I have always loved this race. This is the first WorldTour classic I have won; I have always wanted to be on the podium of this race and have one of those Basque hats, and now I finally have one.”

San Sebastian - Spain - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Trek Factory Racing)   pictured during Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain  - photo: Luis Angel Gomez/Cor Vos © 2016A big hat for Mollema

Clasicá San Sebastián Result:
1. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo in 5:31:00
2. Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal at 0:17
3. Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar
4. Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha at 0:22
5. Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC at 0:34
6. Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Etixx – Quick-Step
7. Simon Yates (GB) Orica-BikeExchange
8. Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned) Cannondale-Drapac
9. Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Sky
10. Dries Devenyns (Bel) IAM Cycling at 0:37
11. Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJ at 0:50
12. Daniel Martin (Irl) Etixx – Quick-Step
13. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal
14. Ben Hermans (Bel) BMC
15. George Bennett (NZl) LottoNl-Jumbo
16. Adam Yates (GB) Orica-BikeExchange
17. Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Astana
18. Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (Spa) Trek-Segafredo
19. Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Movistar
20. Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis
21. Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal
22. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff
23. Jarlinson Pantano Gomez (Col) IAM Cycling
24. Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Sky
25. Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Cannondale-Drapac at 0:54.

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