The great favorite Van Aert disappoints, tenth place for the blue Colbrelli. Van Baarle silver, Valgren bronze
The rainbow jersey of cycling does not change masters and remains on the shoulders of Julian Alaphilippe. The Frenchman confirms in the World Cup Fiandre 2021 gold in the online test elite male conquered last year a Imola, attacking several times in the finale to arrive alone on the finish line Leuven. Silver medal for the Dutch Dylan Van Baarle, bronze for the Dane Michael Valgren. The best Italian, Sonny Colbrelli, closes tenth.
Julian Alaphilippe is confirmed as world champion in road cycling. The Frenchman concedes an encore in the Flanders 2021 road test with an action of his own, attacking repeatedly in the final and arriving alone at the finish line in Leuven. Behind him, separated by 32 ”, the Dutch Dylan Van Baarle and the Dane Michael Valgren complete the podium. Disappointment for Belgium, which does not go beyond Jasper Stuyven’s fourth place. Tenth the best Italian, Sonny Colbrelli.
The race starts with a frenzied pace, after the formation of the breakaway of the day with eight men. Already about 170 km from the finish, some of the possible protagonists try to move, including a particularly active Remco Evenepoel (Belgium). Italy runs well and closes on all shares, protecting their captains. Resuming the breakaway of the day, the Azzurri also respond well to Politt’s attack about 90 km from the finish line, inserting Bagioli in an attempt that again includes Evenepoel and other interesting riders such as Garcia Cortina and Van Baarle. With 58 km to go, the French Alaphilippe extends from the group and forms a group of 17 riders in the lead, including the Italians Bagioli, Colbrelli and Nizzolo, the British Pidcock, the Belgians Van Aert and Stuyven and the Dutch Van der Poel. Behind the platoon he fails to react and it is immediately clear that the medals of the day are pedaling in this group.
Among these runners, the most brilliant remains Alaphilippe. The Frenchman placed the first extension about twenty kilometers from the finish, sending his opponents into difficulty. Resumed, the transalpine manages to get rid of everyone with a great action of force, which leaves no possibility of replication. Behind it forms a quartet with Van Baarle (Holland), Stuyven (Belgium), Powless (USA) and Valgren (Denmark), while the Azzurri lack the energy and the right moment. Alaphilippe soon gains more than half a minute and flies towards the world championship: after Imola, he will wear the rainbow jersey for another year. Behind him Van Baarle surprisingly wins the sprint for silver in front of Valgren, pushing the winner of the Milan-Sanremo, Stuyven, off the podium. Total disappointment for Belgium, completed by the eleventh place of the favorite Wout Van Aert. The cycling world championships, however, end very well for Italy, which finishes in the lead of the medal table with three golds and a bronze.