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by Mark Zalewski
April 21, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Montaguti wins climber’s sprint at Tour of the Alps, Pinot makes up ground; Ruffoni wins sprint in longest stage at Tour of Croatia; Australian Road Nationals to remain in Ballarat until 2020; British Cycling commissions ‘medical review’ after Wiggins’ medical package scandal; ORICA-Scott changing Grand Tour strategy: Simon Yates with Chaves at Tour de France; Gilbert or Van Avermaet: which for Belgium at world championships?; Andrey Grivko given 45-day suspension for punching incident at Dubai Tour; Loss of Rabobank sponsorship affects Dutch federation youth programme; OVO Energy becomes title sponsor of Women’s Tour, Tour of Britain; Nicole Van den Broeck passes away; More good news from Girdlestone’s road to recovery; Van der Breggen and Valverde, an annual Fleche tradition; Video: The Tour De France Explained in Animation; Video: Oakley Cycling Sessions 2017.
Nicola Ruffoni (Bardiani-CSF) won the longest stage of this year’s Tour of Croatia, and made it an all-Italian podium ahead of national champion Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo) and Riccardo Minali (Astana).
“First of all I would like to thank my teammates, they were perfect today,” said Ruffoni. “They did an amazing job, I wouldn’t be able to win without them. I started the Tour of Croatia with a lot of questions in my mind. My last race was Tirreno-Adriatico, one month ago, then I had to stop due to a virus and recover. I really didn’t know how I would perform. In stage one, I did a mistake in the sprint, losing the chance. Today I wanted to wait in the last five kilometres to understand my feeling — then I asked my teammates to support me, they trusted me and the result was great.”
Ruffoni was aided by the presence of his teammate Mirco Maestri in the main breakaway. It also included. Stephan Rabitsch (Felbermayr-Simplon Wels), Daniel Turek (Cycling Academy), Oleksandr Polivoda (Kolss) and Žiga Grošelj (Adria Mobil), along with and GM Europe Ovini riders Adriano Brogi, Davide Pacchiardo and Marco Tizza.
“The presence of Maestri in the breakaway was the first brick to built today’s success. We had the chance to save energy for the finale, especially for the final tricky circuit. Barbin and Rota managed the preparation for the sprint. Boem pulled the peloton at high speed, then Simion launched me in a perfect way -– I could not miss the chance, it was a perfect sprint.”
“I’m really happy for this win, both me and the team needed it. I know Giro d’Italia is coming, but I don’t want to think about it, I prefer staying focused on Tour of Croatia and, why not, being again competitive. Condition is growing, this is the only thing that count right now.”