Always among the best
The rainbow jersey fought again for a great victory in Milano-San Remo, the first Monument of the cycling season. A long race of almost 300 kilometers that once again was decided on the final climb to the Poggio, the short but hard slope that precedes the entrance to the Italian city. Valverde was alert to the attacks on this climb. He followed the movement of the Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step), one of the great candidates to get this victory.
A small group of just a dozen cyclists reached the mythical final curve of the Poggio, where the descent that leads to almost the last kilometer starts. Along with Valverde or Alaphilippe, names like Peter Sagan, Matteo Trentin, Michal Kwiatkowski, Tom Dumoulin, or Vincenzo Nibali; the last winner of the race. In the sprint, Alaphilippe imposed its power to score a triumph of prestige, with Valverde, always with the best, finishing in seventh place.
Quotes (Movistar Team): “It’s been a spectacular Milano-Sanremo, both because of the high level of racing and the great weather – even a bit surprising, so warm for this time of the year. Being up there with the top contenders and finish inside the first group, after 20 days with no racing, is something to be really happy about. It’s been mostly flatout in the finale, with no respite, which helped create that selection. Even if I was gaining some terrain on those launching the sprint from the front into the final meters, I wasn’t able to gain back more places and had to stay content with that seventh place. Hats off to Alaphilippe for that huge victory. Now it’s on to this long travel down to Catalunya, another important race in this early part of the season for me, before some more big classics.”