Carlos Betancur wins hilly Trofeo Melinda
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Saturday, June 02, 2012

Carlos Betancur wins hilly Trofeo Melinda

by Ben Atkins at 12:19 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
23-year-old Colombian beats 22-year-old Italian Moser in an uphill battle to the line

carlos betancurCarlos Betancur (Acqua & Sapone) won the 21st edition of the Trofeo Melinda - Val di Non, in Trentino, northern Italy. The 23-year-old Colombian escaped from a group on the final climb to the finish, with 22-year-old Italian local Moreno Moser (Liquigas-Cannondale) winning the sprint for second over compatriot Giampaolo Caruso (Katusha).

“Melinda’s route suits me,” Betancur explained. “It’s pretty similar to the profiles we find in my home Country’s races. I had already taken two second places at the Giro del Trentino, now this win comes just days after last Sunday’s success in Belgium. I could feel my Team’s trust, and today I hope to have moved closer to the Olympics. In the future, I hope to play a part in the Grand Tours.”

After a fast start to the 198.7km race, a six man group escaped after 27km. In the group were Tiziano Dall’Antonia (Liquigas-Cannondale), Winner Anacona (Lampre-ISD), Giairo Ermeti (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela), Enrico Battaglin (Colnago-CSF Inox), Christian Cominelli (Team Idea), and Peter Kusztor (Atlas Personal-Jakroo); they managed to get 2’35” ahead of the peloton at the 54km point, before the Utensilnord-Named team began to pull them back.

As they crossed the finish line in Fondo, with three 30.5km circuits to go, the six riders’ lead had been cut to just 50 seconds, and they were finally caught with 74km to go as they began the climb to the line for the second time. Immediately the break was caught, Emanuele Sella (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) attacked alone.

Sella quickly pulled out a lead of 1’50” before Liquigas-Cannondale took control of the peloton behind him. Across the line with two laps to go, he still led by 1’43” however, and 1’55” over the top of the Romzone climb that followed 2.7km later, but he too was caught shortly before the line as the peloton took the bell together.

Alessandro Bertolini (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) attacked immediately after the climb, but was caught before he could get far, and midway around the final lap the peloton was reduced to just 30 riders.

As the group entered the final four kilometres, Paolo Bailetti (Utensilnord-Named) attacked; the Italian was able to get no more than ten seconds clear however, and was back in the fold with two kilometres to go.

At this point Betancur made his own move, and managed to get a few seconds clear. Shortly afterwards Leonardo Bertagnolli (Lampre-ISD) set off in pursuit, with Caruso on his wheel. As they caught the Colombian in final 500 metres, Caruso went himself, but he too was caught with just 20 metres to go, as first Betancur, then Moser passed him.

“I'm quite disappointed with today's result,” said Caruso. “When I did the final attack I saw nobody could answer, so I thought I could win. Instead, Betancur managed to close the gap and pass me in the last 20 metres. It's a pity because I felt in a great shape all day long: it was a long time since I haven't felt like this, because May is a particularly difficult month for me due to my pollen allergy.

“A victory could have given us great motivations and morale for our next goals and competition, approaching a very important event such as the Tour de France,” he added. “So it's a pity, but I try to see the sunny side of this podium: our shape is very good, so next time we'll fight for win again.”

Result Trofeo Melinda
1. Carlos Betancur (Col) Acqua & Sapone
2. Moreno Moser (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
3. Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) Katusha Team
4. Davide Rebellin (Ita) Meridiana Kamen @ 3s
5. Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela @ 6s
6. Francesco Failli (Ita) Farnese Vini-Selle Italia
7. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox @ 8s
8. Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox
9. Alexandr Kolobnev (Rus) Katusha Team@ 12s
10. Przemyslaw Niemec (Pol) Lampre-ISD @ 20s

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