23 March 2014
The Milan San Remo is underway in Northern Italy. Below is the map and a link to the start list.
1. Alexander Kristoff (Katusha)
2. Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing)
3. Ben Swift (Sky)
Alexander Kristoff winnnnssss!!!
It's a big bunch, Cavendish is out the front, now it is Alexander Kristoff!
Final Km! The favourites are there - Paolini, Cilek, Sagan Cancellara, Gilbert, and even Cavendish.
3.6km to go. 1km of descending to go and van Avermaet goes! He can't shrug off the others though. It's still a big group. Now another rider goes, Sonny Colbrelli. OPQS goes to the front to close it down, along with Katusha
5.5km to go. Two men have pulled out a few metres lead. Mark Cavendish is right up at the front, while Andre Greipek is at the back of the bunch. One of the leaders is Bauke Mollema of Belkin and with him is a BMC rider, van Avermaet. The descent is very tight and technical.
6.7km. Half a km to the summit of the Poggio and nobody has an advantage. More attacks! And now a merciless descent.
7.7km to go. Rast and Battaglin have a 20" advantage - it is still not enough and the peloton will close them down.
9km to go. Nibali's venture is over. Rast of Trek Factory Racing has immediately attacked. They have no choice. They can't let it go to the finish. Enrico Battaglin is next to attack and now we have two leaders.
On the Poggio with under 10km to go and Nibali's lead is dropping - now 17". When is Sagan or Cancellara going to attack?
12km to go. Despite his so-so form at the Paris-Nice Nibali is driving on. Behind a bunch of guys are looking possibles including Gerard Ciolek and Edvald Boassen-Hagen.
13km to go. Approaching the foot of the Poggio Nibali has 40" on a group of 45 men. Maarten Tjallingii is still there though in second place. 3.5km at an average of 3.6%.
17km to go. A small group has tried to go ahead form the peloton one of which is Cancellara - that won't be allowed to happen. Lo and behold it is caught and now they are motoring.
Nibali is a very good descender and has caught and passed the leaders who are leaders no more. Nibali has just dropped them. It means he won't have any help so his only hope has to be a solo to the finish. There are equally good descenders in the peloton including Philipe Gilbert of BMC.
22.5km to go - Summit of the Cipressa: Nibali has 16" to the leaders, with a 60 man peloton at 40". Cavendish, Greipel and Degenkolb are still there whcih will worry Sagan and Cancellara.
25km to go. Vicenzo Nibali attacks! The break is down to 1'05" on the Cipressa. What sort of form is he in? The peloton isn't fighting back. He'll overhaul the leaders shortly but the gap will be pretty small when he does
27km to go. The break is starting to break up again with Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin) pulling away. This is the time to do it because in the peloton Lotto-Belisol for Andre Greipel and Cannondale for Peter Sagan are piling on the pressure. Mark Cavendish and Ag2r's Degenkolb are still not flinching.
29.3km to. The gap is down to 2'25". The Cipressa is less than 10 km away and it will soon be time for the favourites to show their hand.
With six hours of racing under its wheels the race is hotting up. Scenes of Cancellara, Cavendish and Nibali working hard in the peloton. The gap is now under three minutes for the break. Looks likely they won't survive long enough to fight it out for the finish.
39km to go. Jan Barta is out the back of the break which has a 3'37" advantage near the summit of the Capo Berta
40km to go. The speed is right up in the peloton with the gap down to under 4'50"
Cavendish is two men down with Michal Kwiatkowski and Mark Renshaw out of the race. He will have to use his skills in finding the right wheel if he is to have a chance, but tahrs only of he makes it over the hills in contention
45km to go. The front of the race is starting to change complexion. Katusha and Cannondale are up the front, while the rear of the peloton is leaking riders like a sieve. The four leaders have 5'30" as they move onto the Capo Mele.
53km. Parrinello has finally lost contact despite team car help. Now down to four men as they tackle the three "captains" - Capo Mele, Capo Cervo and Capo Berta. On a dry day they are tough but great fun. In these conditions it is miserable.
57.6km to go. Giant-Shimano, Cannondale, Trek Factory Racing on the front of the peloton.
The finish line is soaked in rain and no prospect of it letting up. If it comes down to a bunch sprint, watch out for crashes. They have the Cipressa and Poggio as well as a few other bumps to go with dangerous descents so it wilbe dangerous all the way.
63km to go. Antonio Parrinello just got a long stint of 'sticky bottle' help from DS Gianni Savio - Must have been right on the edge of the regs. The break is 6'40" which is pretty good going. It might sound good enough but there is only five of them, and there are many in the peloton who are not working yet.
68km to go. Riders are taking every advantage of opportunities to get food and dry clothing from the team cars. It really makes you think how the guys in the old days managed - tough men
70km to go. The break is down to five men - not sure yet who is missing
75km to go. The gap is 6'30". Nobody in the peloton seems willing to work hard to pull it back. The favourites, which include Fabian Cancellara, possibly Mark Cavendish if he gets over the Cipressa and Poggio in contact, and Peter Sagan
81km to go. The peloton is strung out in one long line with Netapp Endura near the front with Orica Greenedge but not working with a man in the break. Riders are doing as much as they can to keep warm.
The weather conditions are really quite awful, rainy and cold. The roads are slick and the riders look miserable despite being wrapped up with best of modern cycle clothing technology.
The break is down to six men with Nicola Boem off the back
This is the 105th edition of the 'Primavera'
14.35 CET. There is 110km to go and the race is over the mountains and on the coast. Last year the race suffered some of the worst weather in decades. The Tuchino Pass was closed to riding and the peloton had to be bussed over the top. This year the weather has been a little kinder but it is still raining and cold.
There are seven leaders with a gap of 7'50".over teh peloton. The Cipressa climb is 20km ahead and shrouded in rain leaving two hours of racing to go based on the race schedule.
The escapees are: Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare).
Race highlights to this point:
140km – The leaders, Parrinello, Boem, Tjallingii, Haas, Bono, Barta and De Maar, were 6'55" ahead as they hit the coast.
148km - Stefan Denifl of IAM Cycling withdrew
150km - Peter Sagan’s Cannondale team set a fast pace in the peloton going over the top of the Turchino pass and around 30 riders fell away at the back
150 km The lead dropped to seven minutes for the seven men out in front,. Europcar's Bjorn Thurau withdrew from the race.
175km - The race reached nursery slopes of the Passo del Turchino, a long 25km climb with a maximum gradient of 6.8%.
150km remaining once they go over the top.
180km - The heavy rain caused the peloton to slow down considerably.
90km - The gap for the seven leaders had grown to 10'30 as the weather continued to deteriorate.
198km - The rain had become heavy and it was very cold - seven degrees. The seven leaders had 9'50 over the peloton with just under 200km left to ride.
210km - After two hours of racing, the peloton passed through Fausto Coppi's home town of Tortona. The average speed at this stage was 44kmph.
225km – There was some light rain on the peloton .
230km - The seven leaders - Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare) –were 8'55 ahead the peloton at this stage.
240km - The seven leaders increased their lead to 9'15 over the pack
The early rain stopped although the sky still looked very threatening.
242km - Spain's Jose Joaquim Rojas of Movistar was reported to have withdrawn
242km - Tjallingii and Barta instigated the break after about 15km of racing. Australian Haas was the first to close the gap, before the three leaders were joined by the four other escapees to form a seven-man leading group.
245km - The seven leaders were: Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare).
250km – There was an early break of seven riders across the Po valley with an eight-minute gap over the peloton.