Tour of Hungary
Stage 1: Balatonalmádi – Keszthely (154 km)
The Italian sprinter Matteo Moschetti was close to victory in the first stage of the Hungarian Tour. The Polartec-Kometa man from Milan finished second at the end of Keszthely, behind his veteran compatriot Manuel Belletti (Androni), who beat him in the last few metres and with this win he moved up to provisional leadership. A first stage with the leading role played by the Madrid squad, led by Isaac Cantón from La Mancha, involved in a breakaway and head of the race for many kilometres.
The three steps up the hill to Rezi, in the framework of a final circuit where the bunch had to complete three laps, did not prevent the end of the sprint, but they did lose a lot of ‘weight’. It was the Androni and CCC formations that were keen to break up a runaway featuring Isaac Cantón (Polartec-Kometa) and András Szmatmáry (Pannon Cycling Team) who, after the first high score for the Grand Prix of the mountain at kilometre 7, took part in the final circuit with almost two minutes of margin.
On the first climb to Rezi, curious for its dinosaur recreations at the top, Szatmary could not keep up with the pace of a Canton that persevered on its own when the stage was still 57 kilometres from completion. The Argamasilla de Alba would end up being hunted 35 kilometres from the end, in the first stages of the second pass through Rezi. With Androni in command, setting the pace of the grouped pack, the pack would shrink to about forty units where a Matteo Moschetti remained well supported by Juan Camacho and Stagiare Stefano Oldani.
In the last round at Rezi, where a couple of offensives would arrive, the most persistent signed by the Polish Adrian Kureck (CCC), the platoon lost some units again. The three members of the Polartec-Kometa remained in that group. Within the last five kilometres Moschetti will start to gain positions, supported by Camacho and an Oldani who will leave Matteo in the first positions within the final twisty kilometre. Moschetti, who stands out slightly, ends up being overtaken by Belletti. In addition to second place on the stage, Moschetti climbed five positions to sixth place in the provisional general standings, 12 seconds behind the leader.
“One of the objectives we started out with in the race was to let ourselves be seen, to have a presence in the race, and that’s what we’ve achieved. The escape was early, but my companion lost strength as the miles went by. I was fatigued. On the way up, without accelerating or anything, he couldn’t follow me. And that’s a shame, because together we could have stayed ahead of the race. The final circuit had a part where the wind was blowing in favor, but another part where it was against the wind. And that solo stretch was getting tough. Together I think that at least we could have crowned the port and opted for the leadership of the mountain general, but well…. Now I’m exhausted, but tomorrow will be another day. It was a good day, with Matteo second,” said Canton himself.
This Thursday the Tour of Hungary will face a third stage of 190 kilometers that will join the towns of Velence and Székesfehérvár in another very favorable day for the massive arrival and, with a more winding central zone, the escapes.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)