The Classic of the Falling Leaves returns to its usual autumnal slot on Saturday, 9 October. According to the alternation between Bergamo and Como as start and finish cities, the 2021 edition of Il Lombardia will see the peloton facing a new 239km demanding course from Como to Bergamo.
Six climbs for a total of 4,400 meters of elevation and the explosive hill of Bergamo Alta in the finale await the riders before the traditional flat finish in the centre of the city.
A Monument that suits a rider like Dylan Teuns, who was 3rd in 2018, is competing for a 4th time. The Belgian will be the leader of Bahrain Victorious, lining up with 5 out of 7 riders that participated in Gran Piemonte on Thursday. They will be joined by the experienced Mikel Landa as road captain and Matej Mohorič co leader. The Spaniard is at his 9th appearance, while the Slovenian Champion rode it only once in 2018, and he will try to have his opportunity, backed by a good shape in this last part of the season. Stevie Williams, fresh from his first victory as a pro, boosted by the GC win, demonstrated to be in top form too and will be co leader. It will be the debut in the Classics for the young Welsh climber, who is looking forward to riding his first Monument race to aim to a solid result with the support of his teammates. Santiago Buitrago is also a debutant at Il Lombardia. The Colombian will give precious help on the climbs and eventually entering on a breakaway, as Hermann Pernsteiner will do. Save energy ahead of the final will be crucial. Therefore, one of the main tasks will be protecting the leaders throughout the day, and Domen Novak often showed his essential help.
Alberto Volpi, Bahrain Victorious SD: “It will be a very demanding and tough day in the saddle. The course will make an important selection without any doubt. The start list includes strong riders, and we also have a lineup of all respect. We want to excellently perform as we did throughout this season, to end it at our best. We are confident because we have good riders, and we’re sure that they can honour this prestigious race. The team spirit will count too, and this group has it for sure”.
Bahrain Victorious lineup for Il Lombardia: Santiago Buitrago, Mikel Landa, Matej Mohorič, Domen Novak, Hermann Pernsteiner, Dylan Teuns, Stevie Williams.
— Simona Mazzoleni to bahraincyclingteam.com