International Cycling

Contador wins Tirreno-Adriatico

2014-03-18 19:11
Alberto Contador (AFP)

Milan - Former two-time Tour de France champion Alberto Contador has signalled his return to form by securing overall victory at the Tirreno-Adriatico stage race following the final time trial on Tuesday.

Italian Adriano Malori (Movistar) won the concluding stage of the 'Race of the Two Seas', a flat 9.1 km race against the clock which finished on the palm tree-lined seafront of San Benedetto del Tronto.

Malori completed the course in a winning time of 10min 13sec, leaving former world time trial champion Fabian Cancellara second at 6sec with Britain's Bradley Wiggins, the Olympic champion in the discipline, in third at 11sec.

However all eyes were on Spaniard Contador, on whom expectations will now be high after a dismal 2013 season in which he tried in vain to beat Chris Froome at the Tour de France, where he finished fourth behind the triumphant Briton.

Contador, who finished second overall recently at the Tour of the Algarve, took the overall lead after an impressive ride on stage five when he launched an attack in the final 30 km, caught an earlier escape group and then beat his stage rivals to win atop the outrageously steep 'Muro di Guardiagrele'.

His performance left overnight leader Michal Kwiatkowski, of Omega-Pharma, trailing home six minutes behind and gave Contador a 2:08 lead on Colombian Nairo Quintana of Movistar.

The 31-year-old Spaniard protected his lead on Monday's sixth stage, won by sprinter Mark Cavendish, and lost only three seconds to Quintana on Tuesday's test to claim his first major stage race since the Tour of Spain in 2012.

Tirreno-Adriatio is one of two major races, along with Paris-Nice -- which finished on Sunday -- in which many riders compete to help hone their form for Milan-SanRemo.

The first major classic of the season will be held on Sunday but, after organisers altered the course by removing a key climb, the Pompeiana, it is expected to suit the sprinters this year.

Contador's bid was arguably boosted by the retirement from the race of Sky's Richie Porte, a pre-race contender, who pulled out prior to stage five due to illness.

His fellow Australian, former Tour de France winner Cadel Evans, pulled out prior to the time trial in order to return home and prepare for the Giro d'Italia which begins on May 9.

Results from the final stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, a 9.1 km time trial around San Benedetto del Tronto:

Stage:

1. Adriano Malori (ITA) Movistar 10min 13sec, 2. Fabian Cancellara (SUI) at 06sec, 3. Bradley Wiggins (GBR) 11, 4. Tony Martin (GER) 15, 5. Tom Dumoulin (NED) 19, 6. Alex Dowsett (GBR) 20, 7. Michal Kwiatkowski (POL) 22, 8. Manuel Quinziato (ITA) 23, 9. Stijn Devolder (BEL) 24, 10. Luke Durbridge (AUS) 26

Overall standings:

1. Alberto Contador (ESP) Tinkoff-Saxo 25hr 28min 45sec, 2. Nairo Quintana (COL) at 2min 05sec, 3. Roman Kreuziger (CZE) 2:14, 4. Jean-Christophe Peraud (FRA) 2:39, 5. Julian Arredondo Moreno (COL) 2:54, 6. Domenico Pozzovivo (ITA) 3:04, 7. Robert Kiserlovski (CRO) 3:09, 8. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (ESP) 3:16, 9. Michele Scarponi (ITA) 3:16, 10. Mikel Nieve (ESP) 3:19

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

Besides the 'Big 3' of rugby, cricket and soccer, which of the 'smaller' sports in South Africa do you enjoy the most?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.