Nairo Quintana escapes a select group to win the Giro dell’Emilia
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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Nairo Quintana escapes a select group to win the Giro dell’Emilia

by Ben Atkins at 1:48 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Fall Classics, Race Reports and Results
Colombian jumps away in the final kilometre to take seventh victory in debut season at the top level

nairo quintanaAfter the success of Carlos Betancur the previous year, Nairo Quintana (Movistar) became only the second Colombian to win the Giro dell’Emilia as he attacked the remains of an exclusive eight-man breakaway group on the final climb to the Santurario di San Luca in Bologna. The 22-year-old had the luxury of Movistar teammate Giovanni Visconti in the move, and so was the freshest when the action started on the steep final climb; he countered an acceleration from Domenico Pozzovivo inside the final kilometre then rode away from the rest to take a solo victory.

Fredrik Kessiakoff (Astana), having been distanced a little on the early slopes of the climb, recovered to take second place, three seconds behind Quintana, with Italian champion Franco Pellizotti (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) overcoming Pozzovivo at the finish to take third.

“First of all, I have to thank the team because they were sensational,” said Quintana afterwards. “A break went away in the beginning of the race with none of us present, but [Vladimir] Karpets, Kiry [Vasil Kiriyenka] and [Marzio] Bruseghin did a great job and [Sergio] Pardilla was always at my side to take me into good position.

“At the end, the work by Visconti was worth a victory itself,” the Colombian continued. “It was incredible what he did. I was very confident about my chances, it could be my day. In the finale, I saw that Pozzovivo, Pellizotti, Kessiakoff were the strongest rivals. Visconti was sensational, chasing down all the attacks, and at the final climb, Gio went on full throttle and I jumped, but saw all my rivals doing well and chose to stay on Pozzovivo's wheel because I thought he was the strongest.

“The last to try was him, and at the hardest slopes I attacked with every bit of energy left, and that was enough to reach the finish solo,” he explained. “I'm really happy with the season I have completed; it's not easy to stay in good form all season. I wish all my pro years went this way. I'm really satisfied about the team, because they worked their heart out for me every time I was fit to contest the victories.”

A 19-man group escaped the peloton after just six kilometres, but this was caught after 52km, as the major climb of the race - to the Passo Sella della Croce - began. Soon afterwards though Damiano Caruso (Liquigas-Cannondale), Marco Marzano (Lampre-ISD), Paolo Tiralongo (Astana), Giairo Ermeti and Carlos Ochoa (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) and Anthony Charteau (Europcar) got away; Ochoa and Charteau were soon dropped, but the other four managed to build an advantage over the peloton.

Over the top of the climb, after 84.8km, Tiralongo, Caruso, Marzano and Ermeti were 5’40” clear, and this lead was to grow over to a maximum of 6’45” in the 25km of plateau and descent that followed.

Over the climb of Badolo, with 65km to go, the four fugitives had just 3’13” in hand and, as they crossed the line at the top of the Santurario di San Luca for the first time they were only a few seconds clear. Tiralongo tried to go it alone, but was caught on the first of the four laps, only for Astana teammate Fabio Aru to have a go himself.

The Italian stagiaire was 20 seconds ahead of the chasers as he crossed the line for the second time, and he was joined by Emanuele Sella (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) on the descent.

A chase led by Visconti closed the two leaders down, then a surge from Pozzovivo, Kessiakoff, Italian champion Franco Pellizotti (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela), Matteo Rabottini (Farnese Vini-Selle Italia) and Quintana pulled what was to be the winning group clear.

It was Chris Anker Sørensen (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) and Riccardo Chiarini (Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela) that led over the line to start the last lap however, but they were soon joined by Pozzovivo, Kessiakoff, Pellizotti, Rabottini, and teammates Quintana and Visconti.

Pozzovivo then made the first move on the final climb, but he was shadowed by Quintana, Kessiakoff and Pellizotti and, with 600 metres to go, Quintana made his own move. The other three riders had no answer to the Colombian’s acceleration and he continued to win alone.

Result 2012 Giro dell’Emilia
1. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team
2. Fredrik Kessiakoff (Swe) Team Astana @ 3s
3. Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela @ 4s
4. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox @ 9s
5. Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank @ 22s
6. Matteo Rabottini (Ita) Farnese Vini-Selle Italia @ 33s
7. Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team @ 35s
8. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela @ 37s
9. Miguel Angle Rubiano (Col) Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela @ 1’17”
10. Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox @ 1’55”


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