By Michal Kwiatkowski’s lofty standards, 2016 was a lean year. Sure, he won E3 Harelbeke and had a few other podium finishes, but the Pole certainly wasn’t at his world-beating best throughout the season. But with a commanding victory at Strade Bianche on Saturday, the former world champion appears set for a bigger year in 2017 (a contract year).
Kwiatkowski forced his way into an elite four-rider group late in the Tuscan one-day race, before going solo with around 15km to go. The 26-year-old made his way into the medieval town of Siena on his own and safely negotiated the technical final kilometre in wet conditions to cross the line solo.
It was an important victory for Kwiatkowski — his second at the now-WorldTour-ranked Strade Bianche — and also for Team Sky. The British-registered outfit has had a few months to forget (thanks to off-the-bike dramas), and Kwiato’s win gives them something to celebrate.
Thankfully for us (and for you!), photographers extraordinaire Kristof Ramon and Ashley & Jered Gruber were out at the race on Saturday and captured some truly stunning shots. We hope you love these photos as much as we do!
Want to read more about how the men’s Strade Bianche unfolded? Click through to our race report here.