Moreno Moser (Cannondale) conquered the white roads of the Strade Bianche in Italy on Saturday to take as solo win ahead of Slovakian team-mate Peter Sagan.
The 22-year-old Italian put in a late attack from an escape group on the twisting, narrow streets of Siena to finish ahead of Sagan. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ag2r) finished in third to give the home nation two spots on the podium.
Defending champion Fabian Cancellara (RadioShack-Leopard) came home in fourth.
“My attack was instinctive,” Moser said after becoming the first Italian to win Strade Bianche. “In races like this, isn’t time or space for too many tactics. I saw the pace relent for a moment and attacked. Sagan was the rider everyone had to watch, and I exploited that.”
“In the final kilometres I had to risk losing. None of the riders ahead of me would give me any help. They were probably right,” Moser continued.
“When I saw the group arrive from behind, I was afraid, but I didn’t panic. I should also say that I kept cool because I knew that Peter [Sagan], of those behind me, would certainly have won the race. So it was about the team today.”
Strade Bianche 2013, 190km
1. Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling in 5-01-53
2. Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale at 6 secs
3. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) Ag2r La Mondiale at 7 secs
4. Fabian Cancellara (Swi) RadioShack-Leopard
5. Aleksejs Saramotins (Lat) IAM Cycling
6. Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing
7. Alexandr Kolobnev (Rus) Katusha
8. Francesco Reda (Ita) Androni Giocattoli at same time
9. Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) Katusha at 10 secs
10. Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha at 13 secs
61. Steve Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing at 11-07
The early escape group
Fabian Cancellara on a section of the unmade white roads that characterise the race
Moreno Moser takes a solo win
Moreno Moser celebrates his biggest win to date