Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) has won the Strade Bianche. The Team Sky rider finished ahead of Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) and Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal).
The 26 year old – who also won the race in 2014 – looked strong from the start and chose the perfect moment to attack on a gruelling wet day in Tuscany, pushing clear of his rivals with 14 kilometres to go.
It looked to be a brave move at the time but it paid dividends, as the Pole quickly forged a significant 30-second gap that never closed. Greg van Avermaet (BMC) and Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) battled hard behind but couldn’t get close to Kwiatkowski, and the pair had to settle with second and third respectively in Siena’s famous Piazza del Campo.
“I was thinking about last year when I crossed the line, and I feel so satisfied. The team has put big trust in to me and all the hard work I’ve done in preparation for this season has paid off”, said Kwiatkowski.
“It’s the second victory at Strade Bianche in my career – it’s just amazing. Coming into the final stages alone was an incredible feeling.”
Explaining his bold attack, Kwiatkowski added: “We started to play a game after the Sante Marie section. I didn’t feel so good there, but the cooperation wasn’t so strong among the group, so I thought the best thing was to go at my own pace.“I didn’t think they’d cooperate well behind me and I could choose my own pace, my own tempo, and go to the finish. I’m so happy that it worked out.”
Strade Bianche 2017 results:
|1||Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky)|
|2||Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)|
|3||Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal)|
|4||Zdenek Stybar (Quick-Step Floors)|
|5||Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb)|
|6||Luke Durbridge (Orica-Scott)|
|7||Christopher Juul-Jensen (Orica-Scott)|
|8||Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal)|
|9||Thibaut Pinot (FDJ)|
|10||Scott Thwaites (Dimension Data)|
|11||José Gonçalves (Katusha-Alpecin)||+3’10”|
|12||Quentin Jauregui (AG2R)||+4’05”|
|13||Fabio Felline (Trek-Segafredo)||,,|
|14||Luis León Sanchez (Astana)||+4’41”|
|15||Stefan Küng (BMC)||+5’31”|
|16||Vegard Stake Laengen (UAE Team Emirates)||+5’41”|
|17||Gianni Moscon (Team Sky)||+5’55’|
|18||Ondrej Cink (Bahrain Merida)||+6’22”|
|19||Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data)||+8’15”|
|20||Truls Korsæth (Astana)||,,|