The peloton gathered in beautiful Tuscany to race the legendary Strade Bianche this weekend. The race, which is known for gravel sections, short and steep climbs, is difficult by itself, however, windy weather was also a key player in the game this time. There was a nasty crash, and a lot of riders were involved. Matej Mohorič (Team Bahrain Victorious) had to abandon the race due to injuries. A little less than 50 km to the finish, Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) attacked and won the race. Jan Tratnik once again selflessly sacrificed himself for the team.
“For me, Strade Bianche is the most beautiful race in the season, and I want to race it each year. I already did it three times and thus gathered some experience, which gave me the confidence for this year to try to get a top result. The race unfolded in line with our predictions until there was a nasty crash and Matej had to abandon the race. The team tactics were reorganized towards Bilbao and me. My job was mainly to be there in the final to cover potential attacks. Pellio and I started the most difficult gravel section in front, but Bilbao got a puncture, which ruined our plan. I gave him my bike and then I had to wait for the team car, which was far behind. In this position, I couldn’t fight for the top result anymore. Nevertheless, I’m happy for Bilbao, who finished 5th, despite all the bad luck we had as a team. I’m a little disappointed because I felt great and also didn’t do any mistakes. Tomorrow is a new day and most importantly, I’m in good shape. I will race Tirreno-Adriatico instead of Matej.”
Photo: Sprint Cycling Agency