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On the start line in Milan-San Remo - Gallery

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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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AG2R La Mondiale's Focus bikes

AG2R La Mondiale's Focus bikes
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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AG2R La Mondiale's Focus bikes

AG2R La Mondiale's Focus bikes
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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John Degenkolb (Trek - Segafredo)

John Degenkolb (Trek - Segafredo)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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John Degenkolb (Trek - Segafredo)

John Degenkolb (Trek - Segafredo)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky)

Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Bahrain - Merida

Bahrain - Merida
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates)

Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Jasper Stuyven (Trek - Segafredo) - Tom Boonen (QuickStep - Floors)

Jasper Stuyven (Trek - Segafredo) - Tom Boonen (QuickStep - Floors)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Fabio Felline (Trek - Segafredo)

Fabio Felline (Trek - Segafredo)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Charles Planet (Novo Nordisk) at the start of Milan-San Remo

Charles Planet (Novo Nordisk) at the start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Julian Alaphilippe and Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors)

Julian Alaphilippe and Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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David Lozano (Novo Nordisk)

David Lozano (Novo Nordisk)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The peloton at the start of Milan-Sanremo

The peloton at the start of Milan-Sanremo
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Simon Gerrans dwarfed by the peloton

Simon Gerrans dwarfed by the peloton
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Julian Alaphilippe and Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors)

Julian Alaphilippe and Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Elia Viviani (Sky)

Elia Viviani (Sky)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data)

Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Breakfast for AG2R

Breakfast for AG2R
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Gianni Moscon

Gianni Moscon
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Salvatore Puccio (Team Sky)

Salvatore Puccio (Team Sky)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Marco Haller (Katusha-Alpecin)

Marco Haller (Katusha-Alpecin)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)

Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)

Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Elia Viviani (Team Sky)

Elia Viviani (Team Sky)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana Pro Team)

Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana Pro Team)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe) - Jacopo Guarnieri (FDJ)

Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe) - Jacopo Guarnieri (FDJ)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Luca Bettini - Claudio Zucchetti

Luca Bettini - Claudio Zucchetti
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Cannondale - Drapac

Cannondale - Drapac
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Tom Boonen (QuickStep - Floors)

Tom Boonen (QuickStep - Floors)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Philippe Gilbert (QuickStep - Floors)

Philippe Gilbert (QuickStep - Floors)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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QuickStep - Floors

QuickStep - Floors
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)

Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb)

Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Fernando Gaviria (QuickStep - Floors)

Fernando Gaviria (QuickStep - Floors)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Pro Team)

Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Pro Team)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Bora - Hansgrohe

Bora - Hansgrohe
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Niccolo Bonifazio (Bahrain - Merida)

Niccolo Bonifazio (Bahrain - Merida)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)

Peter Sagan (Bora - Hansgrohe)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Daniele Bennati (Movistar)

Daniele Bennati (Movistar)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Matteo Trentin (QuickStep - Floors)

Matteo Trentin (QuickStep - Floors)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Filippo Pozzato (Wilier Selle Italia)

Filippo Pozzato (Wilier Selle Italia)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain - Merida)

Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain - Merida)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Miss Milan-Sanremo

Miss Milan-Sanremo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The start of Milan-San Remo

The start of Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

The sun was shining in Milan for the start of Milan-San Remo, the 108th edition of La Classicissima di Primavera - as the Italian call the first monument Classic of the season.

There was excitement and tension in the air as the teams prepared for the longest and least predictable race of the season. The tifosi packed the start area and the team buses, with the Bora-hansgrohe riders and especially Peter Sagan attracting the biggest crowd.

As per UCI rules, the team rode to the sign-on podium in a specific time order, with the wild card teams called first to the podium in front of the central entrance to the Castello Sforzesco.

Filippo Pozzato (Wilier-Selle Italia) was one of the first to sign on and seemed relaxed as he prepared for what is perhaps the final Milan-San Remo if his career. He is the last Italian to win the race, back in 2006.

The riders were generally relaxed and smiling as they signed on, signed autographs and lined up for the start. Sagan was one of the last to arrive and showed off his new look after shaving his beard and leaving just a small moustache that left him looking like a swashbuckling D'Artagnan.

Fernando Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) was also at the centre of attention after it emerged he had crashed hard in training on Thursday. He hurt his right wrist and it was strapped, while he had a cut on his lip and had what looked like bruising on his face.

Gaviria signed on with teammate Tom Boonen, who is riding Milan-San Remo for the last time in his long career.

The 200 riders rolled out of San Remo at 9:45 to cover the 7.6km transfer to the real start outside the city and then the 291km race distance. They faced over seven hours and over 300km in the saddle.