Sixth place for Matteo Moschetti in a first stage where Juanpe and Sevilla are cut by a crash
Giro d’Italia U23
Stage 1: Riccione-Forli (137,7k)
Italian Matteo Moschetti (Polartec-Kometa) finished sixth in the first stage of the U23 Giro d’Italia, a 137.7 kilometre journey that ended in Forli, where his compatriot Giovanni Lonardi (Zalf Euromobil) won in extremis, beating Gerben Thijssen (Belgium, Lotto-Soudal), who was already celebrating his success in the Volata, by millimetres. Another Belgian, Jasper Philipsen (Hagen Berman Axeon), became the new bearer of the pink maglia. In the general classification Moschetti remains the first rider of the Polartec-Kometa, in tenth place, while the Luxembourger Michel Ries, who arrived in the main pack as well as the Manchego Isaac Canton, is the 39th to 19 seconds of leadership.
The Italian champion of his category was wanted by the cameras in the prelegomena. “A veloce passer-by”, he called himself a Moschetti who ventured his impression of what the first day of the Transalpine round could give him: “It’s going to be a nervous stage, the weather is not promising and we hope there will be a volata finish and we can play our tricks”. He was not mistaken: he took the massive sprint, although this time he could not impose his top speed.
That there would be volata was intuitive, such were the interests of not a few teams, but it was not something that became reality until the first stage was less than three kilometers from the end. There, a squad launched by a very strong team neutralized the last exponents of a flight of five cyclists (Faresin, Zalf; Colman, Lotto-Soudal; Landi, Maserati; Zoccorato, Bottoli; Maitre, Vendee U) who stood out at the head of the race during the first third of the stage and even rode with more than four minutes of margin over the bunch.
Faithful to their mission, with Matteo’s very definite trick, the team turned to tucking their man in fast. Gamper, López and Sevilla were actively involved in hunting with the Hagen Berman Axeon runners. Canton and Ries would arrive with Matteo in the first squad, from which the fight for the stage started. Gamper and Lopez, for their part, would arrive in second place at 7:51 from the winner because of the crashes. The last one, at 12:49, would arrive Diego Pablo Sevilla after also being involved in a crash about 25 kilometers from the end. Seville occupies the last place in the general standings, which in the Giro Baby is symbolically recognised by the’maglia nera’. “We tried to have a bit of control, so that the breakaway could be worth it even though there were five strong riders, but we rode quite well. I feel sorry for my fall especially because I was feeling very well, I was comfortable and I think I could have helped Matteo a lot in the end”, says Sevilla.
This Saturday, the first litmus test in the general battle for the Giro Baby. The second stage connects Nonantola and Sestola on 138.2 kilometres of complicated finish. In the last 50 years the ascents of Sant’ Antonio, Lama Mocagno and Montecreto have been faced. Comanche’ territory where the men who bet on the general will emerge.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)
? Andrew Peat