Filippo Pozzato has been the star of a spectacular ride as he chased alone between the three leaders and the chasers for the final five kilometres of Paris-Tours, managing to finish fourth with the first of the sprinters, Oscar Freire, hot on his heels.
But he wasn't a happy man near the town hall of Tours. "I've been so close and the condition I had today allowed me to aim at a better result," said the Italian champion who seems to be strong at Paris-Tours every year but has not managed to read the race to perfection.
Pozzato has been, with Philippe Gilbert, a consistently important actor of Paris-Tours. In 2007, they both escaped but didn't combine their efforts as much as Gilbert did with Tom Boonen today. "I spoke with Pozzato during the race," Gilbert revealed. "We agreed that we wouldn't repeat the same mistake again. Had we been together at the front again, we would have cooperated."
"Unfortunately it didn't happen because I crashed before the others attacked," Pozzato told Cyclingnews. "I had to come back from behind the chasing group. I never managed to bridge the gap to the leading trio. I didn't have enough.
"My regret is that many riders who don't have the legs for it still try and go to the front. That's how crashes happen."
Pozzato left Tours with a huge disappointment but he said: "I've not said my last word for this year. I'm fit enough to go to the Tour of Lombardy with high ambitions on Saturday."