Two days after his comeback to the top of the podium, Riccardo Riccò
made the most out of his ... sprinting abilities to clinch yet another stage victory on Settimana Ciclistica Lombarda roads. The Easter Monday's final stage, raced between Montello and Bergamo town over 153 kilometers, ended in a small bunch sprint of some twenty riders, with Riccò having the quickest legs and taking the laurels from Switzerland's Andreas Dietziker and Venezuela's Jackson Rodriguez.
But inside the front group, and finishing the stage in a comfortable 17th place, was also a certain Michele Scarponi, who easily fought off attacks from Riccò on the day's last ascent and held on to his leadership to become overall winner of the race. A race he basically dominated from beginning to end, leaving Riccò on the runner-up spot, with Przemyslaw Niemiec as the other top three finisher also courtesy of the time sanction Matteo Carrara was given yesterday due to his irregular sprinting.
Today's fireworks started as Holland's Wouter Poels (Vacansoleil Pro Cycling team) launched a solo attack on the Selvino climb, and just 36 riders, all top GC players included, remained in the chase group. The flying Dutchboy was joined by the Spaniard Didac Ortega (Acqua & Sapone) in the descent, but they couldn't take more than 40 seconds out of their pursuers, who caught the pairing with 9 km. to go.
Then came more action on the final climb, with fighting Riccò in first place at the summit, but unable to make the gap for real. He was able to rock the sprint anyway, but that wasn't much of a problem to Scarponi, good enough at keeping everything under control today, and bringing home the Settimana title for the second time (his first overall victory came half a dozen years ago).
Stage 5 (Montello to Bergamo, 153.0 km)
Top 10 Places
1. Riccardo Riccò (Ita - Ceramica Flaminia) - 03h26'02"
2. Andreas Dietziker (Swi - Voralberg-Corratec) - s.t.
3. Jackson Rodriguez (Ven - Androni-Diquigiovanni) - s.t.
4. Fortunato Baliani (Ita - Miche) - s.t.
5. Matteo Carrara (Ita - Vacansoleil Pro CT) - s.t.
6. Rob Ruijgh (Hol - Vacansoleil Pro CT) - s.t.
7. Nicolas Schnyder (Swi - Price-Custom Bikes) - s.t.
8. Bartosz Huzarski (Pol - ISD-Neri) - s.t.
9. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita - De Rosa-Stac Plastic) - s.t.
10. Rubens Bertogliati (Swi - Androni-Diquigiovanni) - s.t.
* Complete stage results HERE (pdf file).
40th Settimana Lombarda - Final GC: Top 10 Places
1. Michele Scarponi (Ita - Androni-Diquigiovanni) - 17h04'06"
2. Riccardo Riccò (Ita - Ceramica Flaminia) - at 22"
3. Przemyslaw Niemec (Pol - Miche) - at 37"
4. Luca Zanasca (Ita - CDC-Cavaliere) - at 47"
5. Matteo Carrara (Ita - Vacansoleil Pro CT) - at 50"
6. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita - De Rosa-Stac Plastic) - at 01'02"
7. Fortunato Baliani (Ita - Miche) - at 01'03"
8. Josè R. Serpa Pérez (Col - Androni-Diquigiovanni) - at 01'08"
9. Emanuele Sella (Ita - Carmiooro-NGC) - at 01'11"
10. Johann Tschopp (Swi - Bbox-Bouygues Telecom) - at 01'20"
* Full Final Standings HERE (pdf file).
Points: 1. Riccardo Riccò (Ita - Ceramica Flaminia)
Mountains: 1. Przemyslaw Niemec (Pol - Miche)
Young Riders: 1. Tom Jelte Slagter (Hol - Rabobank CT)
Foreign Riders: 1. Przemyslaw Niemec (Pol - Miche)
Teams: 1. Androni Giocattoli-Diquigiovanni
Settimana Ciclistica Lombarda - All Winners
1970 Giuliano Marcuzzi (Ita)
1971 Rudolf Labus (Cze)
1972 Fausto Bertoglio (Ita)
1973 Jiri Mainus (Cze)
1974 Stanislas Szozda (Pol)
1975 Valeri Chaplygin (USSR)
1976 Vittorio Algeri (Ita)
1977 Janusz Bienek (Pol)
1978 Alessandro Pozzi (Ita)
1979 Alberto Minetti (Ita)
1980 Czeslaw Lang (Pol)
1981 Alessandro Fedrigo (Ita)
1982 Vladimir Kozarek (Cze)
1983 Andrej Serediuk (Pol)
1984 Flavio Giupponi (Ita)
1985 Youri Kachirin (USSR)
1986 Zenon Jaskuła (Pol)
1987 Vladimir Pulkinov (USSR)
1988 not held
1989 Ivan Ivanov (USSR)
1990 Nikolai Golovatenko (USSR)
1991 Lance Armstrong (USA)
1992 Pavel Tonkov (Rus)
1993 Enrico Zaina (Ita)
1994 Wladimir Belli (Ita)
1995 Massimiliano Lelli (Ita)
1996 Pavel Tonkov (Rus)
1997 Emanuele Lupi (Ita)
1998 Pavel Tonkov (Rus)
1999 Raimondas Rumas (Lit)
2000 Serhyi Honchar (Ukr)
2001 Serhyi Honchar (Ukr)
2002 Tadej Valjavec (Slo)
2003 Julio Alberto Pérez Cuapio (Mex)
2004 Michele Scarponi (Ita)
2005 Riccardo Riccò (Ita)
2006 Robert Gesink (Hol)
2007 Aleksandr Efimkin (Rus)
2008 Danilo Di Luca (Ita)
2009 Daniele Pietropolli (Ita)
2010 Michele Scarponi (Ita)