Mikel Landa (Movistar Team) claimed his first ever victory at Tirreno-Adriatico and his first win for Movistar as he beat New Zealand’s George Bennett at Sassotetto. Damiano Caruso of BMC Racing Team moved back into the lead after Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) sustained a mechanical in the finale. The Italian has an advantage of one second over Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) before tomorrow’s ‘walls’ stage dedicated to Landa’s former teammate Michele Scarponi.
1 – Mikel Landa (Movistar Team) 219km in 6h22’13”, average speed 34.378kph
2 – Rafal Majka (Bora – Hansgrohe) st
3 – George Bennett (Team Lotto NL – Jumbo) st
1 – Damiano Caruso (BMC Racing Team)
2 – Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) at 1″
3 – Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) at 11”
The stage winner, Mikel Landa, said: “I’ve kept a great memory of [former teammate] Michel Scarponi, so I paid tribute to him when I crossed the line. He was always happy and keen to share his happiness with his entourage. In a Spanish team, I possibly found a way of racing that suits me better, less controlled [than at Sky] and more of an attacking style. I’d like to make the final top 3 of Tirreno-Adriatico but some riders have more chances than me to make a difference in the time trial.”
Race leader Damiano Caruso said: “I lost a bit of time yesterday, as expected because the finale didn’t suit my characteristics like today’s. Because of a series of circumstances, I’m back in the lead. It’s great. I couldn’t ask for more. It was a demanding stage with 5000 metres of difference in altitude. I don’t know where Chris Froome is at in terms of condition but it’s unusual to see him lose contact. This year the team gave me the captaincy for GC. Tomorrow, with Greg Van Avermaet, we can target both stage and GC. It’ll be a special day in memory of Michele Scarponi. I wasn’t very close to him but I last spoke to him at the Tour of the Alps [a couple of days before he died]. We spoke about our children. My son will turn three soon. My last memory of him is him saying how nice it is to go back home and see his kids.”
Best young rider Tiesj Benoot said: “I knew I was in a really good shape after winning the Strade Bianche on Saturday and I felt great yesterday as well [third]. But on a long climb, I got my best performance to date. I don’t think I’ve been in better condition before. Tomorrow’s stage has a nice finish for puncheurs. It can suit me well. I’m not a specialist in time trials but I’ll give it my best to win the best young rider jersey of Tirreno-Adriatico.”
Stage 5 – Castelraimondo – Filottrano 178km
This will be a “wall climbing” stage. The route begins on mild but consistent descent, all the way to the “muri” (steep short climbs): the first approach will be with the Montelupone climb (along the “regular” road, not the famous “muro”). The route then reaches the seafront in Porto Recanati. After taking in the Castelfidardo and Osimo categorised climbs, the stage course enters the Filottrano circuit (16.1km), to be covered twice. The race initially diverts on the left, approx. 500m before the finish line. At the final lap, the route turns right and covers the final stretch leading to the finish.
The final kilometres are a mix of climbs and descents. The Muro di Filottrano (with gradients nearing 16%, covered three times overall), 5km before the finish, is followed by a challenging descent and then by a mild climb leading back to the finish line, on 5.5m wide, porphyry-paved road.
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Castelraimondo lies almost at the end of the upper Potenza River valley, in the province of Macerata, in a lovely natural setting and among the gentle rolling hills. Introducing the city from a distance is an ancient mediaeval tower, called the “Cassero” – the legacy of a glorious and evocative past. The town has found further momentum and growth in handicraft and industrial activities; however, the special relationship between past and future, between tradition and modernity is still alive both in the town and in the surrounding “frazioni”, with their rich historical, artistic and cultural heritage. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the town was renowned for its terracotta manufacture, and was home to a number of earthenware makers (called “cocciari”) and famous blacksmiths. The hilly territory around Castelraimondo is known for the production of Verdicchio di Matelica, a top-quality and world-renowned wine (together with Verdicchio di Jesi). The organic wine produced by the “ColleStefano” winery, made from grapes harvested late in October and hence sporting unique organoleptic properties, is exported especially to Germany and the US.
The town is named after Ottrano, the Lombard king who founded the city, as legend has it, and its name translates as “mount of the sons of Ottrano”. Nestled among the hills, the town is surrounded by the castle walls. Vicolo Mura Castellane is a narrow yet fascinating alley that leads from the first storey of the fortress down to the moat. Lying at the heart of the old town, and located almost halfway across Corso del Popolo (the long and charming high street), Piazza Mazzini offers a stunning view over Mount Conero, Macerata, Recanti and Loreto. Major landmarks in Filottrano include the churches of San Cristoforo and San Francesco; the latter houses masterpieces by Ramazzani and Bellini. A short walk on a lovely staircase named the “Porticella” leads you to the church of Santa Maria degli Angeli. Villa Centofinestre has one of the largest green-plant gardens of the entire region, and is definitely worth a visit. Here, the bond with fashion is strong, as the city and its surroundings are home to some of the best tailors, exporting Made in Italy garments worldwide.
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