March 20, 2006
Milan-San Remo wrapup
The peloton made contact with the six leaders, who were fighting every inch of the way, so instead of the typically engulfing end to the break, the break members stayed out at the tip of the spear. As Milram tried to set up its finishing sprint, coming around the break remnants, Igor Astarloa (the OLN commentators thought it was Rinaldo Nocentini of Acqua e Sapone) just put the hammer down. Pozzato not only caught him, but came around him, charging super hard, and the gap held up. Astarloa wound up 11th.
If you watched the TV coverage, VeloNews fingers Ivan Gutierrez as the Caisse d'Espargne rider trying to wave off the motorcycles -- he thought they were hovering a little too close to Petacchi's chasers, giving the peloton a bit of a draft.
Petacchi was all class in defeat:
"I was in top form, but I didn't have the luck today," Petacchi said. "You need to have the luck to win Milan-San Remo. Our team rode great today and I wanted to pay back their efforts with a victory. But my compliments go to Pozzato. Quick Step worked the tactics perfectly with Pozzato on the wheel and they left the chase up to us."
1) Filippo Pozzato, Quick Step, in 6:29:41
2) Alessandro Petacchi (I), Milram, same time
3) Luca Paolini (I), Liquigas, s.t.
4) Tom Boonen (B), Quick Step, s.t.
5) Danilo Napolitano (I), Lampre, s.t.
6) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, s.t.
7) Stefano Garzelli, Liquigas, s.t.
8) Alessandro Ballan, Lampre, s.t.
9) Martin Elmiger, Phonak, s.t.
10) Matteo Carrara, Lampre, s.t.