And four in a row! Sonny Colbrelli extended his Italian hegemony at the European Road Cycling Championships by sprinting the Belgian star of great hope Remco Evenepoel on Sunday in Trento (Italy). Colbrelli is the only one to have managed to stay in the wheel of the Belgian to dominate him in power in the final and offer Italy his fourth continental title, with four different riders, after the coronations of Matteo Trentin (2018), Elia Viviani (2019) and Giacomo Nizzolo (2020).
Frenchman Benoît Cosnefroy, who followed the first two for a long time, let go in the last of the eight climbs of the Povo coast (3.6 km at 4.7%), about ten kilometers from the finish. He consoles himself with third place. “I did not leave with great feelings, I felt a little pressure to be at home, among the favorites. But I benefited from a great team. Winning this event is truly an incredible thing, ”savored the winner, who thus perpetuates the Italian tradition.
– the L’Équipe channel (@lachainelequipe) September 12, 2021
However, it was necessary to be strong to resist Evenepoel, indeed returned to his best level a year after his serious fall during the Tour of Lombardy (pelvic fracture). In Trento, he won his second podium at the European Championships, after third place in the time trial on Thursday.
The Colbrelli “plaster”
In a fairly short race (179 km) but intense from the start, punctuated in particular by several French attempts – Romain Bardet in particular -, the young Belgian blasted the leading group of ten runners 22 kilometers from the line, during the penultimate ascent of the Povo, the only difficulty of the final 13 km circuit that the riders covered eight times.
Only Colbrelli and Cosnefroy then managed to follow Evenepoel, while other favorites of the day, such as the double winner of the Tour de France Tadej Pogacar (finally 5th), dropped the flag. But the Belgian never managed to get the Colbrelli “sticking plaster”, which sometimes appeared at the limit in the final ascent but clearly more powerful in the two-man sprint in front of the famous Duomo, which hosted the Council of Trent in the 16th century. .