Bais fights in the breakaway, Wackermann shows his grit on the final climb and Fortunato returns with good pedal stroke
Giro della Toscana
Pontedera – Pontedera (191.5 km)
The Monte Serra, between Lucca, Pisa and Pontedera, is a popular terrain for both competitive and recreational cycling. It is a paradise for cycle tourism. And a stage rich in sporting narratives in which the Giro della Toscana is now selected, and how, too. Not in 2020, but in 2018 and 2019. A major climb, with length (8.4 km) and difficulty (7%). If in previous years it was faced on three occasions, two were the times that the cyclists managed it in this 2021 edition of the Tuscan semi-classic. The place that was set to be fundamental was in terms of selection and Luca Wackermann was particularly active in it. The final attack came later, on the flat terrain towards the finish. There, in the last thirteen kilometres, the Danish rider Michael Valgren made his move and began a ride that led to a solo victory. 1’18” behind was the group with Lorenzo Fortunato and Luca Wackermann.
It was Davide Bais, however, the first protagonist of the day for the EOLO-KOMETA Cycling Team. The rider from Trentino was involved in the gestation of a breakaway of six riders that was formed in the first fifteen kilometres, which achieved up to four minutes of advantage and that reached the first of the ascents to Monte Serra. On the slopes, where the group of favourites had substantially reduced their lead, Bais insisted and persisted in the company of Frenchman Valentin Ferron. However, shortly before the summit of this iconic peak, they were caught. Another race began. A breakaway of Uran, Higuita and Rota formed on the descent was the start of this new phase of the race. With minimal gaps, a group with the EOLO-KOMETA Cycling Team riders broke the breakaway before the start of the Monte Serra.
On the final climb Luca Wackermann was particularly attentive to other movements. First he joined a quintet. Then, after regrouping in a group of less than thirty with Lorenzo Fortunato, he made a move with Poland’s Majka. Before the summit Majka went solo, with a minimal gap. This was the prelude to a new regrouping from which a group of around fifteen riders would emerge, with Wacky. In the following field, the number of riders grew, with Fortunato among others, and the race situation arose in which Valgren made use of the numerical superiority of his formation to impose his riding skills and open a gap that would be difficult to close. Wackermann (18º) and Fortunato (16º) arrived in the chasing peloton, slightly overtaken by De Marchi. A very good group performance of the whole EOLO-KOMETA Cycling Team, beyond concrete results.
Davide Bais: “Today I only had to do one thing: get into a breakaway and stay there as long as possible. I think I did my job, even if I really struggled a lot. The breakaway started almost immediately and took a good lead, I showed up a bit and I was the last one to be caught. It’s ok, these races for me are a very important experience that I will need later on”.
Luca Wackermann: “I was feeling good, and I wanted to try to stay in front on the last climb to see what would happen. My leg was good, I was able to keep a good pace and we made a selection: then, in the final I could not do more. Maybe, thinking back, I could have better managed the sprint to try to get a placement: tomorrow is another day, we’ll see…”.