Fourth place in a very tough Strade Bianche
The twelfth edition of the Strade Bianche, one of the youngest but, at the same time, most spectacular events of the World Tour calendar, was an epic day of cycling. Alejandro Valverde fought again with the best in a race marked by the cold, the rain and especially the mud, which covered the 60 kilometers of sterrato (dirty roads) that define this Tuscan competition.
Valverde was attentive to the first dangerous movement of the day. He integrated a small group along with other favorites like the Polish Michal Kwiatkowski or the Belgian Wout Van Aert, the cyclocross world champion. Then, Alejandro attacked alone on the longest and most decisive stretch of sand in this Strade Bianche, 48 km away from the finish line, but he returned with his teammates shortly before being hunted by a second pursuer group.
The race was completely broken. Tiesj Benoot, who reached the leading group with Bardet and Van Aert, achieved his first great success as a professional. Valverde, followed by the rest of the favorites, finally achieved the fourth place, showing very good legs in the final section.