Sonny Colbrelli crossed the line behind Michael Valgren (EF Education-Nippo) on an uphill sprint to the line at Coppa Sabatini.
This year’s Gran Premio Citta di Peccioli was a bit different than in the previous years. It was 210 km long with three different circuits which always passed through the tiny picturesque old city Peccioli.
Despite an early breakaway, Bahrain Victorious took control of the race to manage the gap. Sonny was positioned very well at the penultimate climb and was one of the protagonists who pushed the group. On the final climb, Colbrelli and seven riders went up the road with a minute to the peloton. With several attacks, Sonny chose the right moment to follow Valgren but ultimately had to settle for second as fatigue from his efforts in the European Championships set in.
Sonny Colbrelli: “I gave it my all today. In the late breakaway group, I always pull at the front. They were in two of the same team, and obviously, Valgren stayed behind. Therefore, in the finale, he has more energy left. I can’t say I’m happy with a second-place result, as I always want to win. Today more than ever, I’m wearing the European Champion jersey and wanted to take the first win with it. Besides that, my teammates, especially Domen Novak and Jonathan Milan, worked hard, and I wanted to repay them with a victory”.
Alberto Volpi, Bahrain Victorious Sports Director: “We are satisfied with today’s racing. Guys followed the instructions and the team strategy. Sonny was at the end well positioned with the help of all his teammates. Unfortunately, he didn’t have strength in the last few meters, and he finished 2nd.”
Sonny Colbrelli can soon have another opportunity to take the first victory with the European Champion jersey, as he will lead Bahrain Victorious at Memorial Marco Pantani, scheduled on Saturday 18th September. The Italian Champion already won this race in 2014, which wants to remember one of the most beloved Italian cyclists of all time.
This edition will feature a traditional route of 196km from Castrocaro Terme Terra del Sole to Cesenatico. A challenging course, including the Montevecchio circuit with a 5km climb (average slope of 6-8% with peaks of 13-14%) to be covered three times. Then the race heads towards the sea, with the finale on the Cesenatico 5km circuit to repeat four times, for a total of Km 20.
Alberto Volpi, Bahrain Victorious SD: “Memorial Pantani is always a particular race with a challenging first part with many climbs and a second easier part on the plain. We aim to win the race with our leader Sonny Colbrelli, supported by Domen Novak. We will also try to enter in the break with Pernsteiner, Padun and Williams”.
(All pictures can be used for editorial and non-commercial usages only and are copyright @Bettiniphoto @TeamBahrainVictorious)
— Simona Mazzoleni to bahraincyclingteam.com