The Dutch team, among the favourites at the star, got the win and the third spot, while Italian De Pretto (Zalf Euromobil Désirée Fior) was runner-up. Fellow-Jumbo member Graat and Irish Darren Rafferty (Hagens Berman Axeon) rounded-up an absolutely classy top-5, cheered by thousands on the route
Jumbo-Visma dominates the Centennial Edition of Giro del Belvedere on April 10, placing three riders in the first four spots. Norwegian Johannes Staune-Mittet took off slightly less than 3 km to the finish line and soloed in Villa di Cordignano (Treviso, Northern Italy). Italian runner-up Davide De Pretto (Zalf Euromobil Désirée Fior), improved last year’s fourth place and tackled the Dutch supremacy, completed by Loe Van Belle, third, and Tijmen Graat, fourth. Fifth place to another raising talent of international cycling, Irish Darren Rafferty (Hagens Berman Axeon), to confirm the top-level line-up of the Easter Classic.
“It’s my first win in Italy and the first win of the season – said the Norwegian rider, second place at last year Tour de l’Avenir -, so it feels really special. I had already raced here two years ago and I really enjoyed the race: this year was even better with the new route. I think the team had a great performance, with multiples aces to play for the win: in the end I decided to sprint a bit before, to anticipate opponents and teammates (laughs, ed), and it was the right move”.
The unprecedented 171 km route gave non-stop emotions to the thousands of cheering fans on the course, with a successful debut of the new climb and the new ring, very appreciated also by the riders. As per the novelties of this Centennial-year edition, the preliminary operations started in the wonderful Villa Brandolini Zanussi, together with teams’ presentation and a welcome party for authorities, guests and sponsors.
The race started with a tribute to former MTB champion Dario Acquaroli – who recently passed away – saw the first escape right before km 20, with Irish McCambridge (Trinity Racing) and Italian Farinati (So.L.Me Olmo) stretching the peloton. McCambridge ended-up winning the three intermediate sprints of the day, but he could nothing against the supremacy of the Dutch team, who raised the pace in the last part of the race and placed three riders in the first four places.
Giro del Belvedere also got full praise from guests, authorities and cycling legends such as Gilberto Simoni and Claudio Chiappucci, which attended a “very interesting and high level race”, and from Cordignano’s Mayor Roberto Campagna, who thanked the organization and the fans for the great welcome to the race and the athletes.