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Gallery: A look back at the 2013 Milan-San Remo

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Manuel Belletti was covered in snow

Manuel Belletti was covered in snow
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Tom Boonen was wrapped up but suffered like everyone in the cold and snow

Tom Boonen was wrapped up but suffered like everyone in the cold and snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Ciolek wins the sprint to the line ahead of Sagan and Cancellara

Ciolek wins the sprint to the line ahead of Sagan and Cancellara
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Philippe Gilbert congratulates teammate Taylor Phinney after the race

Philippe Gilbert congratulates teammate Taylor Phinney after the race
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The rain and wind continued to batter the riders on the coast road

The rain and wind continued to batter the riders on the coast road
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The snow covered the road

The snow covered the road
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) suffered in the cold conditions and eventually retired from the race

Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) suffered in the cold conditions and eventually retired from the race
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The snow covered the road and made it difficult for the riders to see

The snow covered the road and made it difficult for the riders to see
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Kanstantsin Siutsou heads to the Team Sky bus

Kanstantsin Siutsou heads to the Team Sky bus
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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It was hard at the back of the race

It was hard at the back of the race
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The snow came down heavily as the riders approached the Passo Turchino

The snow came down heavily as the riders approached the Passo Turchino
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The peloton fights the snow on the Lombardy plain

The peloton fights the snow on the Lombardy plain
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Gerald Ciolek (MTN-Qhubeka) enjoys his moment of victory

Gerald Ciolek (MTN-Qhubeka) enjoys his moment of victory
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Ligurian town of Imperia offers an impressive back drop to the racing

The Ligurian town of Imperia offers an impressive back drop to the racing
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Moreno Moser leads his Cannondale teammate Peter Sagan on the Poggio

Moreno Moser leads his Cannondale teammate Peter Sagan on the Poggio
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton was lined out right from the start

The peloton was lined out right from the start
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tom Boonen suffers in the snow

Tom Boonen suffers in the snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders search for their team buses after the race was neutralised

Riders search for their team buses after the race was neutralised
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The strong winds made the racing even harder

The strong winds made the racing even harder
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A BMC rider leads the peloton through the snow

A BMC rider leads the peloton through the snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Zdenek Stybar leads a suffering Mark Cavendish

Zdenek Stybar leads a suffering Mark Cavendish
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Peter Sagan (Cannondale) went close to victory after chading down Cancellara on the Poggio

Peter Sagan (Cannondale) went close to victory after chading down Cancellara on the Poggio
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stannard and Chavanel were part of a late attack

Stannard and Chavanel were part of a late attack
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton tries to survive in the snow

The peloton tries to survive in the snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Philippe Gilbert (BMC) was aggressive in the finale

Philippe Gilbert (BMC) was aggressive in the finale
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A lone Garmin-Sharp rider battles through the snow

A lone Garmin-Sharp rider battles through the snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders were unable to hold their handlebars due to the cold and snow

Riders were unable to hold their handlebars due to the cold and snow
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The Omega Pharma-QuickStep teamloads the bikes in the bus for the transfer to the snow-free coast

The Omega Pharma-QuickStep teamloads the bikes in the bus for the transfer to the snow-free coast
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Matt Goss waves his arms after an early crash

Matt Goss waves his arms after an early crash
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Taylor Phinney (BMC) just failed to catch the attackers, finishing seventh

Taylor Phinney (BMC) just failed to catch the attackers, finishing seventh
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

2013 saw one of the most dramatic editions of Milan-San Remo in the history of the race, with the riders competing in the snow and rain and suffering all the way from Lombardy to the finish on the San Remo sea front.

Race organisers eventually neutralised the race and cut out the snow covered Passo Turchino, reducing the race distance to less than 200km. However the riders still faced more than five and a half hours in terrible conditions.

Incredibly half of the field managed to make it to the finish, with Gerald Ciolek (MTN-Qhubeka) out sprinting Peter Sagan and Fabian Cancellara after a group of six riders got away over the top of the Poggio climb.

In this special image gallery, photographers Tim de Waele and Luca and Roberto Bettini –who were on motorbikes in the terrible conditions - share some of their best images from the terrible day.

The pain on Manuel Belletti's face tells the story of the suffering in the snow before the Turchino. He lost feeling in his toes and recently told Italian television that he still has some problems. Many of the riders suffered in the cold and snow but had warm showers and pulled on clean clothes to ride the second half of the race. Ian Stannard (Team Sky) and Philippe Gilbert (BMC) went on the attack on the Cipressa and before the Poggio but once again the final climb caused the damage when Cancellara tried to go clear alone.

Sagan and Ciolek were able to follow him. Sagan made the mistake of leading out the sprint and Ciolek punished his over-confidence by snatching victory.

Rain and cold have been forecast for Sunday but fortunately conditions are not expected to see a repeat of the terribly dramatic scenes of the 2013 race.