The French talent of Equipe Continental Groupama-FDJ, European Champion 2021 in Trento, won again on Italian soil at the international U23 classic of Villa di Cordignano. Guzzo (Zalf Eurombil Fior) and the Junior World Champion Hagenes (Jumbo-Visma Academy) round out a World-class podium
Romain Grégoire, once again. The Frenchman from Besançon triumphed on the podium of the 83rd edition of the Giro del Belvedere: the rider of Equipe Continental Groupama-FDJ got solo on the finishing line in Villa di Cordignano (Treviso, Northern Italy). The French rider replicates the success of last Saturday at Liège-Bastogne-Liège U23. Second place for Italian Federico Guzzo (Zalf Euromobil Fior, 20″ behind) and third for Norwegian Per Strand Hagenes (Jumbo-Visma Dev. Team, third at 23″), Junior World Champion in 2021.
“Winning here is a fantastic feeling – said Grégoire on the finish line -. I really enjoy racing in Italy: the courses, the landscapes and the public make me excited and push me to give my best. In the final I had no information about the escapees in front of me and I just gave everything I had. For me it’s great: I won a lot in the junior category and it’s a feeling that I want to keep up in the U23 as well”.
Right under an international-class podium, the top-10 also included Davide De Pretto (Zalf Euromobil Fior), Anders Foldager (Biesse-Carrera), Alessandro Pinarello (Team Bardiani-CSF-Faizane’), Lorenzo Germani (Equipe Continental Groupama FdJ), Fernando Tercero Lopez (Eolo Kometa Cycling Team), German Dario Becerra Gomez (Colombia Tierra de Atletas GW Shimano) and Pierre-Pascal Keup (Team Lotto-Kern Haus).
After a moment to homage the victims of the war in Ukraine, a Country represented at the start by Eurocar GS Cycling Team, the race started with Marco Andreaus (Cycling Team Friuli) and Matevz Govekar (Tirol KTM Cycling Team) trying to break away, and getting a good margin on the group (up to one minute). Nevertheless, the “Belvedere” spiced up, as often happened in the past, in the second part of the race.
With the group getting further behind the breakaway, then of 8 escapees, the race’s stars decided it was no longer time to wait and increased the pace. Guzzo seemed to be able to get away but there was nothing to do against Grégoire’s dominance, who swept him aside before the second KOM and then kept a cushion of 20 seconds until the end.
Former pro cyclist Claudio Chiappucci agreed on the excellent showcase given once again by the “Belvedere” to young talents (“Those who succeed here can pursue a career at the highest level“), as well as Tokyo 2021 Italian Olympic gold medallist Jonathan Milan, who joined the race in the past: “The atmosphere today was truly spectacular“.
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