A relentless attacking Michael Woods won the centenary Milano-Torino in Italy on Wednesday, his first one-day race victory. He previously had finished second in 2016. Woods has been looking very strong in the build up to Saturday’s Il Lombardia, coming second in Giro dell’Emilia and riding in a strong chase group at Tre Valli Veresina that was led down a wrong street on Tuesday.
— ammattipyöräily (@ammattipyoraily) October 9, 2019
The 179 km race really came down to two climbs of Superga in the final 24 km. The Superga maintains a 9.2 average for over 4 km. The second passage was 600 metres longer than the first. Thibaut Pinot, Rigoberto Uran and Angel Lopez were the last three winners.
#MilanoTorino 🇮🇹 The bunch are heading out of Milan for the start of today's action!
Here's a look at the profile for the 179km route to Torino ⛰ pic.twitter.com/21vs83P2WK
— Mitchelton-SCOTT (@MitcheltonSCOTT) October 9, 2019
In a pre-race interview Michael Woods said that he wanted to stay warm and test the legs before Il Lombardia.
A breakaway trio became a quintet and loped along the flat ground southwest of Milan. With 75 km to race, the five pedaled 4:30 ahead of the peloton. At the foot of Superga I, the escapees’ gap was 1:30.
— La Flamme Rouge (@laflammerouge16) October 9, 2019
Deceuninck-Quick Step’s Remi Cavagna went solo as the road kicked up, but the Ineos-powered peloton absorbed him at the top. Ineos continued to control on the descent, shutting down Gianluca Brambilla and Philippe Gilbert.
Approaching Superga II, Astana and EF Education came to the front on the peloton. Jakob Fuglsang accelerated, drawing Adam Yates and Woods. Then it was Woods’ turn to hit the gas with 4-km left, Jon Izagirre and Jack Haig grabbing his wheel.
— Canadian Cycling Mag (@CanadianCycling) October 9, 2019
Woods skipped away with 2.7 km to go but David Gaudu came across the gap. A high-powered chase of Egan Bernal, Alejandro Valverde, Yates, Haig and Izagirre hooked up with Gaudu and Woods with 1.8-km remaining. Woods surged again and once more Gaudu made the junction.
At the red kite, the duo had an six-second lead on the chasers, but the road flattened and it came together again. Gaudu dug in with 600-metres to the line. Woods hit it with 350-metres to go and Valverde couldn’t close him down. The Canadian had time to celebrate at the line.
Woods is a favourite for Saturday’s Il Lombardia, along with Giro dell’Emelia and Tre Valli Veresina winner Primož Roglič.
1) Michael Woods (Canada/EF Education First) 4:03:48
2) Alejandro Valverde (Spain/Movistar) s.t.
3) Adam Yates (Great Britain/Mitchelton-Scott) +0:05