Bauke Mollema takes solo victory at Il Lombardia
Oct 12 2019 11:13 pm CET

Bauke Mollema takes solo victory at Il Lombardia
Bauke Mollema takes solo victory at Il Lombardia

Trek-Segafredo's Bauke Mollema has taken a solo victory at the last monument of the season: Il Lombardia. The rider crossed the finish line 16 seconds ahead of Alejandro Valverde and Egan Bernal.

The 'race of the fallen leaves' was 243 kilometres long and took the peloton over a mountainous route that featured iconic climbs like the Madonna del Ghisallo, the Colma di Sormano and San Fermo della Battaglia. The competition started with a breakaway of eight that featured names like Bob Jungels, Fausto Masnada, Remi Cavagna and Toms Skujins.

With 70 kilometres to go, Cavagna couldn't keep the pace and Masnada continued by himself but was soon caught and left behind by Skujins and Jungels. On the descent of the Colma di Sormano, there were several attacks and changes of rhythm by riders like Alejandro Valverde, Vincenzo Nibali, Giulio Ciccone and Davide Gaudu from the reduced pack and the two men were caught.

On the climb of Civiglio, Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-hansgrohe) and Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) attacked and left behind a strong group. With 20 kilometres remaining, Buchmann was left alone in front while behind Gaudu and Michael Woods attacked from the pack.

Shortly after, Valverde launched a strong attack and went on by himself, leaving also Buchmann behind, but his attempt was soon neutralised by the reduced group and a couple of kilometres later it was the turn of Trek-Segafredo's Bauke Mollema to make a move. Behind, Pierre Latour (AG2R La Mondiale) set the rhythm and was followed by riders like Woods, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma), Egan Bernal (Ineos), Enric Mas (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) and Jakob Fuglsang (Astana), among others.

On the last part of the climb, Latour tried again and managed to create a gap but he was reeled back in at the descent. At ten kilometres from the finish line, Roglic launched an attack but was caught by the others at the last climb of the day.

With six kilometres to go, Bernal launched his attack but he was followed by the rest while Mollema increased his gap in front. Just after the crest of the last climb, Valverde once again changed the pace and this time left the others behind.

Mollema crossed the finish line by himself, while Valverde and Bernal did so 16 seconds behind him and completed the final podium of the race. This is the first time a Dutch rider wins the Monument since 1981 when Hennie Kuiper conquered the Italian race.



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