Paolini strengthens candidacy for World's berth

Luca Paolini (Quick.Step-Innergetic) proved his worth for a spot on the squadra azzurra in Madrid by triumphing on the most difficult stage of the Tour of Britain, attacking 10 kilometres into the stage and staying away till the finish in Sheffield, where he outsprinted Bram Schmitz (T-Mobile) for the win.

"I knew that this was the hardest stage of this year's race and I didn't want to wait for a bunch sprint," said Paolini in a team statement. "This success confirms my good condition. After an unlucky period I want to make a good end of season. I'd like to participate in the World's to give my contribution as I have done in the past."

"I devote the victory to the family of Stefano Zanini that has been stricken in these days from a family loss. I hope they find soon serenity," he added.

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