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Katusha’s Alexander Kristoff wins 105th Milan-San Remo

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) won the 105th Milan-San Remo under unpleasantly cold and wet weather conditions along the Ligurian coast of Italy on Sunday. He outpaced Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) and Ben Swift (Team Sky) in a sprint to the line.

Only 25 riders finished the nearly 300-km classic in the front group.

Svein Tuft (Orica-GreenEdge), who resides in B.C., and Hugo Houle (Ag2r-La Mondiale), who lives in Quebec were the two Canadians on the start line. Italy-born Davide Frattini (UnitedHealthcare), who now resides in Canada and trains full-time in Barrie, Ont., was also competing.

The race kicked off in Milan with a seven-rider breakaway that included Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura), Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthcare), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Matteo Bono (Lampre-Merida), Nicola Boem (Bardiani-CSF) and Antoinio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli). They gained a maximum of 10 minutes and stayed away much of the race.

The last rider, Tjallingii, was caught after the Cipressa, on the way to the Poggio, which are the final two climbs of the race.

Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) had made the first decisive attack from the peloton partway up the Cipressa but he was caught on the Poggio in the final 10 km.

Some 25 riders crested Poggio and galloped to the finish line with Kristoff taking the sprint win. Tuft finished 89th and Houle 114th place.