Elia Viviani (Cofidis) celebrated his second victory of the week at the Tour Poitou-Charentes on Thursday morning, despite a complaint to the race jury from sprint rival Timothy Dupont (Bingoal WB) that he was sandwiched between Viviani and lead-out man Simone Consonni.
Viviani won Tuesday's opening stage and placed second on Wednesday, before raising his arms again in the first instalment of Thursday's split stage.
The wins represent the Italian's most consistent run of form since he joined Cofidis in 2020. He was winless in that first season but his brace in France follows two stages at the Adriatica Ionica race in June and a bronze medal in the Omnium at the Olympic Games.
"We're very happy with this end of the season. It has been a good period for me and my teammates," Viviani, who will leave Cofidis at the end of the season, told DirectVelo.
"I told Simone [Consonni] to lead me out as if he had to go all the way to the line, because yesterday I was left too far out. Simone did a perfect job. When the train works, we're there and we win."
However, Consonni's long lead-out drew complaints from Dupont, who placed second on the stage.
The Belgian left it late to try and come around Viviani, but when he did, the road was partially blocked by Consonni, who was indeed sprinting all the way to the line and moving from the right-hand side of the road to the left in doing so.
"In my opinion, the sprint was irregular. I was on Viviani's wheel and when I tried to get out, Consonni moved over to the left. I was sandwiched," Dupont told DirectVelo.
"It wasn't clean. I'm disappointed because I was well placed, I had the strength. I don't know if I'd have managed to get past Viviani but I had to brake."
Consonni crossed the line in third place and the result was upheld by the UCI race commissaires.
The Tour Poitou-Charentes continues on Thursday afternoon with a 23.5km time trial, and concludes with a final road stage into Poitiers on Friday.
#TPC2021@eliaviviani 🥇🥈🥇pic.twitter.com/dk1a7SZzFJAugust 26, 2021
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