Albasini takes out Tre Valli Varesine

Thu 18 Sep 2014

Multiple 2014 Tour of Romandie stage winner Michael Albasini has continued ORICA-GreenEDGE’s winning streak, taking out the Tre Valli Varesine in Italy this afternoon.

Albasini becomes just the tenth international winner of the one-day race, dominated over the 94 editions by Italian victories.

The win follows a trio of triumphs in Canada for ORICA-GreenEGDE, the first at the Tour of Alberta with Daryl Impey and then the Quebec and Montreal double by Simon Gerrans. 

The victories late in the season continue to show good form as riders fine tune for the world championships starting next weekend in Spain. 

Adding to that, the Tre Valli Varesine is raced just a few kilometres from the team’s Italian headquarters, just outside the city of Varese. 

“I’m super happy to win one of these important and well-respected Italian one-day races – and on top of that, the closest one to our base,” Albasini said.

“The team rode perfectly all day and I’m happy to get big morale boost leading into the worlds.

“It was a very tough race with proper bad weather at the end but we stuck to our plan and that worked out really well.”

Early break attempts were shut down by ORICA-GreenEDGE before they joined subsequent efforts to remove the pressure of the chase.

“We did a bit of work early on to pull back the first, big break-away group,” Albasini explained. 

“Then we had Christian Meier perfectly placed in the counter attack that went when they got caught. That meant the rest of us could save our legs a little for the final.

“It came down to a big attack by (Enrico) Gasparotto (AST) on the last climb. That split the group completely and I managed to get into an 11-man break that it created.”

In the break on the final lap and confident of proceedings, Albasini timed his sprint to perfection, passing Sonny Colbrelli (BAR) in the final metres to claim the top step of the dais.

“I knew this was the winning break as no one was pulling properly behind us and I tried to keep calm as my eyes were on the sprint,” Albasini said.

“(Filippo) Pozzato (LAM) was in the group too and I mainly focused on him coming into the last kilometres. 

“There were a few crashes coming into the last stretch and I was worried about opening to the sprint too early. Two riders went with 300 metres to go and I managed to close the gap and open my sprint very late. 

“The road was so wet that I was even too scared to raise my arms as I crossed the line first!”