Pietropolli sprints to win in Trofeo Laigueglia

Daniele Pietropolli (Lampre-ISD) confirmed his early-season form with an impressive victory at the Trofeo Laigueglia. The Italian was part of a move of ten or so riders that formed in the finale, and he accounted for Simone Ponzi (Liquigas-Cannondale) and Angelo Vicioso (Androni Giocattoli) in an exciting sprint.

Third last season, Pietropolli was delighted to get the win in Laigueglia after a plethora of near-misses in recent years. “I’ve been a professional for eight seasons and if you look at the results of various editions of Laigueglia, you’ll find me in every position from second to tenth,” he said afterwards. “I was missing first place and I’m just so happy to have done it.”

The 30-year-old had to work hard for his victory as the leading group fragmented under impetus from Alessandro Ballan (BMC) in the closing stages. Pietropolli got back on at the red kite, and then found the wherewithal to launch his winning sprint.

“I was able to catch my breath for 200 metres and then the sprint started,” he said. “I had to shout at Vicioso to move out as he was closing me in and it was dangerous. I had to brake for an instant and then go again, but I managed it.”

Second-placed Ponzi had Giro d’Italia champion Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale) to lead him out, but he too was forced to brake behind Vicioso in the finishing straight.

“A pity, because I was coming back really strongly, so much so that I passed Pietropolli just after the line,” Ponzi explained.

Basso to the fore

The Trofeo Laigueglia traditionally marks the beginning of the build-up to Milan-San Remo and it was no surprise to see a number of the stars of the Italian gruppo to the fore on the Ligurian coast after Pavel Brutt (Katusha Team) and José Cayetano Sarmiento (Acqua & Sapone), the remnants of the day’s early break, were swallowed up inside the final 40km.

On the climb of the Paravenna, 25km from the finish, a show of strength from Ivan Basso forced the major selection of the race. Alessandro Ballan, Damiano Cunego (Lampre-ISD) and Emanuele Sella (Androni Giocattoli) were among the big names who were quick to counter Basso’s move, and when the dust had settled on the climb, an elite group of 34 had forged clear.

Fabio Taborre (Acqua&Sapone) led over the summit, and the frantic run-in to Laigueglia saw a flurry of attacks. Basso was again aggressive in the final 10km, but it was an attack by Ballan that ultimately split the leading group. The former world champion jumped clear on the outskirts of town, and a group of a dozen riders came together in the final kilometre, with Pietropolli, Fortunato Baliani (D'Angelo&Antonucci - Nippo) and Ryan Anderson (Spidertech) the last to make the juncture.

In the sprint, Pietropolli timed his acceleration to perfection to pip Ponzi for his second win of the season. The 30-year-old already tasted victory on the opening stage of the Giro della Provincia di Reggio Calabria with a fine uphill sprint victory, as well as taking overall honours, and he gave another timely reminder of his condition here.

Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre - ISD4:42:20
2Simone Ponzi (Ita) Liquigas-CannondaleRow 1 - Cell 2
3Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) Androni GiocattoliRow 2 - Cell 2
4Fabio Taborre (Ita) Acqua & SaponeRow 3 - Cell 2
5Pavel Brutt (Rus) Katusha TeamRow 4 - Cell 2
6Fortunato Baliani (Ita) d'Angelo & Antenucci - NippoRow 5 - Cell 2
7Alessandro Ballan (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 6 - Cell 2
8Frédéric Amorison (Bel) LandbouwkredietRow 7 - Cell 2
9Paolo Ciavatta (Ita) Acqua & SaponeRow 8 - Cell 2
10Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-CannondaleRow 9 - Cell 2
11Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Cannondale0:00:52
12Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Lampre - ISDRow 11 - Cell 2
13Ryan Anderson (Can) Team Spidertech Powered By C10Row 12 - Cell 2
14Jonathan Monsalve (Ven) Androni GiocattoliRow 13 - Cell 2
15Constantino Zaballa Gutierrez (Spa) MicheRow 14 - Cell 2
16Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col) Androni GiocattoliRow 15 - Cell 2
17Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 16 - Cell 2
18Leonardo Fabio Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit En LigneRow 17 - Cell 2
19Luca Ascani (Ita) d'Angelo & Antenucci - NippoRow 18 - Cell 2
20Philipp Mamos (Ger) Amore & VitaRow 19 - Cell 2
21Edoardo Girardi (Ita) De Rosa - Ceramica FlaminiaRow 20 - Cell 2
22Andrea Noe (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri SottoliRow 21 - Cell 2
23Danilo Di Luca (Ita) Katusha TeamRow 22 - Cell 2
24David Lelay (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 23 - Cell 2
25Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre - ISDRow 24 - Cell 2
26Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre - ISDRow 25 - Cell 2
27Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre - ISDRow 26 - Cell 2
28Ivan Santaromita (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 27 - Cell 2
29Mauro Finetto (Ita) Liquigas-CannondaleRow 28 - Cell 2
30Alessandro Proni (Ita) Acqua & SaponeRow 29 - Cell 2
31Damiano Caruso (Ita) Liquigas-CannondaleRow 30 - Cell 2
32Amaël Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing TeamRow 31 - Cell 2
33Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 32 - Cell 2
34Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En LigneRow 33 - Cell 2
35Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet0:06:05
36Maxime Vantomme (Bel) Katusha TeamRow 35 - Cell 2
37Francois Parisien (Can) Team Spidertech Powered By C10Row 36 - Cell 2
38Olivier Bonnaire (Fra) FDJRow 37 - Cell 2
39Reto Hollenstein (Swi) Team VorarlbergRow 38 - Cell 2
40Cayetano José Sarmiento Tunarrosa (Col) Acqua & SaponeRow 39 - Cell 2
41Rémi Cusin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En LigneRow 40 - Cell 2
42Stefan Schumacher (Ger) MicheRow 41 - Cell 2
43Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 42 - Cell 2
44Alessandro Bisolti (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri SottoliRow 43 - Cell 2
45Paolo Bailetti (Ita) De Rosa - Ceramica FlaminiaRow 44 - Cell 2
46Elia Favilli (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri SottoliRow 45 - Cell 2
47Simone Stortoni (Ita) Colnago - CSF InoxRow 46 - Cell 2

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.

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