The pair escaped from an elite leading group inside the final 3km of the final ascent, and while Yates made sustained attempts to put Roglič in difficulty, he was unable to match the Slovenian’s devastating acceleration in the final 300 metres.
João Almeida (Deceuninck-QuickStep) out-sprinted Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) for third place at 35 seconds, while Michael Woods (Israel Start-Up Nation) led home the rest of the chasers at 49 seconds.
As per recent tradition, Milano-Torino was decided on the final twin ascents of Superga, though the race ignited when the peloton split in two with more than 50km remaining. Yates was caught on the wrong side of that selection, but he showcased his form by bridging up to the elite group of leaders on the first time up Superga.
Deceuninck-QuickStep were to the fore on that ascent, with Fausto Masnada setting a brisk tempo on behalf of Almeida and world champion Julian Alaphilippe, before Mauri Vansevenant clipped away from the leading group near the summit, with a little overt 19km remaining.
The Belgian youngster scrambled down the descent and then extended his advantage on the run-in to the final climb up Superga, and he reach the final 5km with a lead of 24 seconds over a group of 23 riders.
Rafal Majka (UAE Team Emirates) quickly pared back that advantage with Alaphilippe on his wheel, but both men faded from the front immediately after Vansevenant was caught.
Yates, meanwhile, began his onslaught with a little under 4km to go, and only Roglič, Pogačar, Almeida, Woods and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) could track his initial acceleration.
The Briton’s forcing soon burnt off Woods and Valverde, and it was later apparent that both Almeida and Pogačar would struggle to match his pace. Yates kicked again with 2.8km to go and he was briefly alone at the head of the race before Roglič zoomed across the gap in familiar fashion 400 metres later.
The leading pair worked together to establish a winning lead over Pogačar and the battling Almeida. Yates led into the final kilometre and he unleashed a last acceleration with 400 metres to go but Roglič was able to get back on terms and then deliver the telling blow within sight of the finish.
“You never really know what you have left in the legs for the final kick; sometimes it goes, sometimes it doesn't go. Today I had it,” said Roglič, who enhanced his status ahead of Saturday’s Il Lombardia.
“I don't want to think about that at the moment, I want to get some rest and enjoy it,” he added. “The final one, the biggest one - there's a nice challenge in front of us.”
How it unfolded
After a one-off mid-pandemic, flat edition last year, Milano-Torino returned to its roots and to Superga for its 102nd edition. The 190km route was largely flat ahead of the twin ascents of the 5km final climb, with its average gradient of nine per cent.
The race set out from the outskirts of Milan just before midday and it didn’t take long for a breakaway to form. Oier Lazkano (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Mattia Frapporti (Eolo-Kometa), Joan Bou (Euskaltel-Euskadi), and Davide Orrico (Vini Zabù) went clear initially before Kevin Vermaerke (Team DSM) and Juri Zanotti (Bardiani-CSF-Faizane) set off behind.
It took a while, but the front four decided to ease up to allow the two late-comers into the fold after around 20km. The sextet then built a lead of 3:30, but it soon came down to 2:45 for much of the first half of the race as the peloton kept them on a short leash.
It was a quiet day in the saddle, until it wasn’t. Suddenly. With just under 65km left to race, the peloton split in three. A brisk tailwind was blowing along much of the route but there were a couple of jinks where it turned to a sidewind, and Deceuninck-QuickStep took full advantage.
The Belgian team, something of specialists when it comes to crosswinds, put no fewer than six of their seven riders into a front echelon of 19 riders that clipped clear. The rest of the bunch itself split in two before reforming and then mounting a furious chase around 45 seconds down on what was now the lead group, the breakaway having been swiftly swept up.
Alaphilippe, Almeida, Vansevenant, Masnada, and Dries Devenyns were the QuickStep riders up front, while Roglič had teammates in Tobias Foss and Michel Hessmann, Pogačar had Majka and Marc Hirschi for company, Woods had Chris Froome, Ben Hermans, and Reto Hollenstein, and Valverde had Dario Cataldo. Together with the original break, they formed a 23-rider front group that barrelled towards Turin in the final 50km.
At first, there was widespread commitment up front, but the responsibility later fell squarely on Deceuninck-QuickStep as a strong chase was mounted behind. Ineos Grenadiers, Trek-Segafredo, Arkéa-Samsic all committed numbers, while Astana, Qhubeka NextHash, and Cofidis all contributed to bring the gap down to just 15 seconds with 30km to go.
Devenyns did the bulk of the work ahead of the first ascent of Superga, where the race quickly exploded again with 24km to go. Masnada took it up and soon only Alaphilippe, Almeida, Vansevenant, Pogačar, Majka, Roglič, Woods, Hermans, and Valverde were able to follow.
However, the favourites who’d missed the earlier split started to spring from the chase group and make their way across the gap. Yates was the first to do so and he was soon joined by his teammate Pavel Sivakov, along with Nairo Quintana (Arkéa-Samsic), Michael Storer (Team DSM), David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ), Matteo Fabbro (Bora-Hansgrohe), and Aleksandr Vlasov (Astana-Premier Tech).
Towards the top, Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo), Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates), Rein Taaramäe (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux), Remy Rochas (Cofidis), Clement Champoussin (AG2R Citroën) and Mikel Bizkarra (Euskaltel-Euskadi) made it a group of 24.
Just shy of the summit, Vansevenant launched a big attack and led alone onto the descent. By the bottom he had 10 seconds in hand, and he managed to extend that to 25 seconds on the 5km of flat that preceded the final climb.
Majka was the sole chaser but quickly ate into the gap once the final climb began. He set such a pace that he briefly went clear with Alaphilippe, although both riders soon paid for their efforts and fell away.
At that point, Yates began his charge, and barely relented all the way up. As he swept past Vansevenant, only Roglič, Pogačar, Almeida, Woods, and Valverde could follow. The latter two were soon distanced, however, and Pogačar and Almeida themselves started to struggle with 3.5km to go. They clawed their way back but as soon as they did so, Yates hit them again, moving well clear.
At first, it looked like Roglič couldn’t follow as he swung to the side of the road, but he suddenly sprang into gear and blitzed his way across the gap. That left two, and they combined for much of the climb before taking the left-hander up the steep final ramps to the Basilica inside the final 600 metres.
Yates knew he had to make one last attack but Roglič dug in, got himself back on terms, and then went around and clear with another devastating final acceleration. After winning the Giro dell’Emilia on Saturday, he has confirmed himself as the man to beat at Il Lombardia.
|Pos.||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma||4:17:41|
|2||Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers||0:00:12|
|3||João Almeida (Por) Deceuninck-QuickStep||0:00:35|
|4||Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates|
|5||Michael Woods (Can) Israel Start-up Nation||0:00:48|
|6||David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ|
|7||Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates|
|8||Fausto Masnada (Ita) Deceuninck-QuickStep|
|9||Nairo Quintana (Col) Team Arkea-Samsic|
|10||Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team||0:00:56|
|11||Ben Hermans (Bel) Israel Start-up Nation|
|12||Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Astana-Premier Tech|
|13||Matteo Fabbro (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|14||Rein Taaramäe (Est) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux|
|15||Michael Storer (Aus) Team DSM||1:27:00|
|16||Mikel Bizkarra Etxegibel (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi||0:01:50|
|17||Pavel Sivakov (Rus) Ineos Grenadiers||0:02:01|
|18||Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Qhubeka NextHash||0:02:05|
|19||Mauri Vansevenant (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep||0:02:30|
|20||Clément Champoussin (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team||0:02:35|
|21||Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo||0:02:40|
|22||Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) Groupama-FDJ||0:02:51|
|23||Chris Harper (Aus) Jumbo-Visma||0:03:01|
|24||Rafal Majka (Pol) UAE Team Emirates|
|25||Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep||0:03:18|
|26||Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana-Premier Tech||0:03:39|
|27||Cristian Scaroni (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|28||Daniel Savini (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'|
|29||Jhojan Garcia Susa (Col) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA||0:03:43|
|30||Artem Nych (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|31||Matteo Badilatti (Swi) Groupama-FDJ|
|32||Edward Ravasi (Ita) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|33||Eduardo Sepulveda (Arg) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec|
|34||Rémy Rochas (Fra) Cofidis||0:04:02|
|35||Andrea Garosio (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'||0:04:07|
|36||Larry Warbasse (USA) AG2R Citroën Team|
|37||Giovanni Carboni (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'||0:04:14|
|38||Jan Bakelants (Bel) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux||0:04:22|
|39||George Bennett (NZl) Jumbo-Visma||0:04:33|
|40||Guillaume Martin (Fra) Cofidis||0:04:39|
|41||Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team|
|42||Ruben Fernandez (Spa) Cofidis||0:04:49|
|43||Sergio Roman Martin Galan (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA|
|44||Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo||0:04:58|
|45||Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|46||Marc Hirschi (Swi) UAE Team Emirates|
|47||Mikel Iturria Segurola (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi|
|48||Sam Oomen (Ned) Jumbo-Visma|
|49||Einer Rubio Reyes (Col) Movistar Team|
|50||Daniel Muñoz Giraldo (Col) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec|
|51||Davide Bais (Ita) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|52||Jan Polanc (Slo) UAE Team Emirates|
|53||Christopher Hamilton (Aus) Team DSM||0:05:09|
|54||Jason Osborne (Ger) Deceuninck-Quickstep||0:05:57|
|55||Pavel Kochetkov (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo||0:06:33|
|56||Joan Bou Company (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi|
|57||Clément Berthet (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team|
|58||Daniel Pearson (GBr) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|59||Sepp Kuss (USA) Jumbo-Visma||0:06:51|
|60||Davide Orrico (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM||0:07:06|
|61||Simone Petilli (Ita) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux||0:07:12|
|62||Elie Gesbert (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic||0:07:19|
|63||Maxime Bouet (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic|
|64||Jaakko Hänninen (Fin) AG2R Citroën Team|
|65||Luca Covili (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'|
|66||Julen Amezqueta Moreno (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA|
|67||Romain Combaud (Fra) Team DSM|
|68||Eddie Dunbar (Irl) Ineos Grenadiers|
|69||Sergei Chernetskii (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|70||Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Ineos Grenadiers|
|71||Emanuel Buchmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe||0:07:26|
|72||Alessandro Monaco (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'||0:07:36|
|73||Ide Schelling (Ned) Bora-Hansgrohe||0:07:49|
|74||Luca Chirico (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec||0:07:59|
|75||Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic||0:08:09|
|76||Oier Lazkano Lopez (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA||0:08:28|
|77||Mikaël Cherel (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team||0:09:08|
|78||Tobias Foss (Nor) Jumbo-Visma|
|79||Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Team DSM||0:09:32|
|80||Mattia Frapporti (Ita) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|81||Reto Hollenstein (Swi) Israel Start-up Nation||0:11:06|
|82||Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) Groupama-FDJ|
|83||Marco Brenner (Ger) Team DSM|
|84||Erik Fetter (Hun) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|85||Hugo Toumire (Fra) Cofidis|
|86||Michel Hessmann (Ger) Jumbo-Visma|
|87||Louis Meintjes (RSA) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux|
|88||Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|89||Lukasz Owsian (Pol) Team Arkea-Samsic|
|90||Rodrigo Contreras Pinzon (Col) Astana-Premier Tech|
|91||Abner González Rivera (PuR) Movistar Team|
|92||Orluis Alberto Aular Sanabria (Ven) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA|
|93||Simone Velasco (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|94||Yannis Voisard (Swi)||0:11:44|
|95||Aurélien Paret Peintre (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team||0:13:04|
|96||Geoffrey Bouchard (Fra) AG2R Citroën Team|
|97||Dylan Sunderland (Aus) Qhubeka NextHash|
|98||Jacopo Mosca (Ita) Trek-Segafredo||0:14:25|
|99||Amanuel Gehbreigzabhier (Eri) Trek-Segafredo|
|100||Sean Bennett (USA) Qhubeka NextHash|
|101||Niklas Eg (Den) Trek-Segafredo|
|102||Riccardo Tosin (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|103||Alessandro Bisolti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec|
|104||Simone Ravanelli (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec||0:14:33|
|105||Attila Valter (Hun) Groupama-FDJ|
|106||Unai Iribar Jauregi (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi||0:16:47|
|107||Jeremy Bellicaud (Fra) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux|
|108||Josu Etxeberria Azpilikueta (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA||0:18:56|
|109||William Bonnet (Fra) Groupama-FDJ||0:21:03|
|DNF||Dries Devenyns (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep|
|DNF||Pieter Serry (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep|
|DNF||Jhonatan Restrepo Valencia (Col) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec|
|DNF||Mattia Bais (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec|
|DNF||Fabio Felline (Ita) Astana-Premier Tech|
|DNF||Samuele Battistella (Ita) Astana-Premier Tech|
|DNF||Matteo Sobrero (Ita) Astana-Premier Tech|
|DNF||Filippo Zana (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'|
|DNF||Juri Zanotti (Ita) Bardiani CSF Faizane'|
|DNF||Matthew Walls (GBr) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|DNF||Ben Zwiehoff (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|DNF||Pablo Garcia Frances (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA|
|DNF||Thomas Champion (Fra) Cofidis|
|DNF||Simon Geschke (Ger) Cofidis|
|DNF||Victor Lafay (Fra) Cofidis|
|DNF||Lorenzo Fortunato (Ita) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|DNF||Mark Christian (GBr) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|DNF||Diego Pablo Sevilla Lopez (Spa) Eolo-Kometa Cycling Team|
|DNF||Jokin Aranburu Arruti (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi|
|DNF||Antonio Angulo Sampedro (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi|
|DNF||Txomin Juaristi Arrieta (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi|
|DNF||Marco Canola (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|DNF||Ivan Rovny (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo|
|DNF||Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ|
|DNF||Tao Geoghegan Hart (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers|
|DNF||Ivan Ramiro Sosa Cuervo (Col) Ineos Grenadiers|
|DNF||Cameron Wurf (Aus) Ineos Grenadiers|
|DNF||Jan Hirt (Cze) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux|
|DNF||Riccardo Minali (Ita) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux|
|DNF||Jakub Boucek (Cze) Israel Start-Up Nation|
|DNF||Daryl Impey (RSA) Israel Start-up Nation|
|DNF||Chris Froome (GBr) Israel Start-up Nation|
|DNF||Daniel Martin (Irl) Israel Start-up Nation|
|DNF||Dario Cataldo (Ita) Movistar Team|
|DNF||Nelson Oliveira (Por) Movistar Team|
|DNF||Davide Villella (Ita) Movistar Team|
|DNF||Romain Hardy (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic|
|DNF||Mark Donovan (GBr) Team DSM|
|DNF||Kevin Vermaerke (USA) Team DSM|
|DNF||Antonio Puppio (Ita) Qhubeka NextHash|
|DNF||Mauro Schmid (Swi) Qhubeka NextHash|
|DNF||Karel Vacek (Cze) Qhubeka NextHash|
|DNF||Emil Vinjebo (Den) Qhubeka NextHash|
|DNF||Antonio Tiberi (Ita) Trek-Segafredo|
|DNF||Antonio Nibali (Ita) Trek-Segafredo|
|DNF||Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team Emirates|
|DNF||Aleksandr Riabushenko (Blr) UAE Team Emirates|
|DNF||Edoardo Zardini (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|DNF||Marco Frapporti (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|DNF||Giulio Masotto (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|DNF||Riccardo Stacchiotti (Ita) Vini Zabu' Brado KTM|
|DNS||Alex Aranburu Deba (Spa) Astana-Premier Tech|
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