Despite being the only Trek Factory Racing rider in the peloton, Riccardo Zoidl defending his Austrian national road race title in Igls, 1:29 minutes ahead of Team Sky's Bernie Eisel on the 169km undulating course with Matthias Brändle (IAM Cycling) finishing in third place.
Zoidl was forced to chase a breakaway of 15 riders ahead of him on the road for 70km which had been whittled down to six when he made the catch with 15km left to race. On the final 4km ascent to Igls, Zoidl made his move and soloed to victory to ensure back-to-back wins.
"It was a full-gas race," Zoidl explained. "There were 15 guys in the front and I was four-five minutes behind. For the last 70km I was chasing alone because it was always up, down, up down and I got back to the front with one and half circuits remaining."
It was on the final lap of the three circuits that Zoidl made contact with the remnants of the breakaway and having twice ridden up the final climb, he knew just where to launch the killer blow.
"I attacked and then we were three - [Bernhard] Eisel was there," he said. "On the final time up the climb, I went full gas and I think I won by one minute. I am super happy to be national champion again! It means a lot for me, and for the team."
With no allies in the peloton, Zoidl explained that his anger at being forced to do all the work proved to work to his advantage.
"In the end I was a little bit angry because everyone was looking at me and no one wanted to ride with me, and so I said to myself, 'okay I am going to go until I am empty.' On the last climb I went hard from the bottom. Maybe the anger helped me to the win - but I am very happy to have the jersey again."
Zoidl's next race is the Tour of Austria starting on July 6 which he enters as the defending champion.
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