Ivan Santaromita won his first race for the BMC Racing Team by out-sprinting a pair of breakaway companions at the end of Thursday’s third stage of the Giro del Trentino.
‘It was Perfect’
Santaromita, Paolo Tiralongo (Astana Pro Team) and Michele Scarponi (Lampre-Merida) arrived together at the finish of the 176.1-kilometer race after separating themselves from a larger breakaway group on the day’s final climb. Tiralongo led out the sprint, but Santaromita came around him with 100 meters to go to earn his first stage win since turning professional in 2006. “Cadel Evans and (BMC Racing Team Assistant Director) Fabio Baldato told me it was a good day for me to get in the breakaway and try to win the stage,” Santaromita said. “Today, finally, it was perfect. I had good legs and good tactics. I saw Scarponi suffering with cramps and Tiralongo was the best sprinter, so I took his wheel.” Tiralongo finished second and Scarponi was third as Maxime Bouet (AG2R-La Mondiale) kept the overall lead.
Santaromita last experienced victory when he won the overall classification of Settimana Coppi e Bartali in March of 2010, a year before joining the BMC Racing Team. “This is wonderful,” he said. “Before coming to this race, I did a training camp alone. It’s not always easy being away from my family and away from home. But now I am happy. It’s a beautiful day.” Baldato said there was a relaxed atmosphere and good morale in the team despite only having four riders for the penultimate stage: Adam Blythe, Evans, Marco Pinotti and Santaromita. “When the race is hard like today and you have good legs, you can make the race even with three or four guys,” Baldato said. “Cadel was always with the leaders and was strong. It was good for him to have Ivan in the front. And Pinotti was close to remaining with Cadel and only lost contact with the first chase group in the last kilometers.”
Listen to complete comments from Santaromita (in English and Italian) on the BMC Racing Team Audio Line: