Viviani hat-trick in Adriatica Ionica
Quick-Step Floors leave the Italian race with four stage victories and the points jersey.
Elia Viviani continued to enjoy an absolutely sparkling run in the Quick-Step Floors jersey, this time in the charming Trieste, where the inaugural edition of Adriatica Ionica concluded. First rider to don the leader's jersey at the five-day event, the 29-year-old didn't have any rival in the three stages which culminated in a bunch sprint, taking as many convincing wins and cementing his place at the top of the individual victories standings.
The circuit in Trieste, which the peloton covered six times, was the one used on the last stage of the 2014 Giro d'Italia, with the start and finish reversed, and Quick-Step Floors policed the front of the bunch, chasing down the escapees and setting up the sprint for Elia Viviani, whose burst of speed sent him across the line arms aloft, ahead of Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) and Riccardo Minali (Astana).
With three victories in the bag and the top spot in the points classification, which he won with a huge margin over his opponents, Elia Viviani was all smiles on Sunday afternoon: "Our plan was to control the race from the outset and the boys did again a superb job. James and Jhonatan chased the escapees until the penultimate lap, when Kasper took over and put in a massive effort. Then, Davide, Niki and Alvaro formed a solid sprint train and Alvaro did a perfect lead-out, leaving me in a great position to open my sprint."
"This was my first stage race since the Giro d'Italia and I come out of it happy with my sprint, the number of victories and confident for next week's Italian Championships, my last appointment before a well-deserved break", said Viviani after his 13th win of the season.
Sports director Davide Bramati summed up things after the final day of Adriatica Ionica: "It's been an incredible week of racing with perfect weather, nice roads and four beautiful wins for our team. We kicked off things with a strong collective performance in the TTT, which put us in the lead of the race with Elia, who continued to impress throughout the race with three stage victories, which came as a result of a top team effort. I am very proud of the boys!"
Photo credit: ©BettiniPhoto