Michal Kwiatkowski of Team Sky has won the 108th edition of the 290km Milan-San Remo, after out-sprinting Peter Sagan to a thrilling finish.
2014 World Champion Kwiatkowski and the current custodian of the Rainbow Jersey, Peter Sagan, were joined on the podium by French cycling sensation Julian Alaphilippe, who was riding his first-ever ‘La Primavera.’
With Sagan launching a strong attack on the legendary Poggio, the dual World Champion led the trio toward the line but Kwiatkowski timed his sprint to perfection to deliver the closest of finishes.
Sagan From ‘Another Planet’
Kwiatkowski said he was in a better position than most other riders to beat Sagan because the two have competed together since they were juniors.
“Half of the bunch thinks he’s from another planet,” he said. “But I truly believe he’s beatable. He was impressive on the Poggio but, wearing the rainbow jersey, he was in the worst situation [because he was the main target]. Alaphilippe and me put pressure on him. I was gambling a bit with his mind. I knew from last year that winning alone was impossible but following Sagan, yes. I left a little gap to make him launch his sprint from very far out. I’m just happy how it went.”
Sagan’s Sensational Attack
Peter Sagan, said he gave his all to try to win.
“Thanks to my team who did a good job preparing for the finale,” he said. “They kept me out of trouble; in this race, it’s important to avoid crashing. I was very close to crashing as I crossed the finishing line! The spectacle is important for the people who watch the race. Everybody is happy, I think. My attack on the Poggio was dictated by instinct. I just tried. I realized I was alone, then [Julian] Alaphilippe came across and we descended very quickly. It was a good show.”
Caleb Ewan In Top Ten
Orica-Scott’s Caleb Ewan finished 10th overall and hinted his confidence in one day winning the big race.
“It went pretty quickly actually,” he said. “My legs feel alright. I think because the first part was easier it didn’t tire me out too much, I guess it just weakens you a little bit.”
“I thought if I was on a good day and in good position on the climbs that I could be there in the finish. I felt good in training in the last week but I knew it would depend on how it was raced and maybe today was a bit easier than other years. Today gives me confidence that it can happen one day.”
2017 Milan San Remo Podium
1 – Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) – 291km in 7h08’39”, average speed 40.732km/h
2 – Peter Sagan (Bora – Hansgrohe)
3 – Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors)