Milan - Slovenian Primoz Roglic won Saturday's Giro dell'Emilia, to position himself as favourite for next week's Tour of Lombardy.
World No 1 Roglic followed on from his recent success in the Vuelta a Espana, with a solo break in the 207km race around Bologna in the north of Italy.
Roglic broke clear on the final climb to the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca overlooking the city which hosted the prologue of the Giro d'Italia last May.
The Jumbo-Visma rider overtook Michael Woods of the Education First team with 800m to go before crossing the line alone 15 seconds ahead of the Canadian.
Tour de France winner Egan Bernal finished in ninth position, 28 seconds off the pace.
The Italian classic races conclude with the Tour of Lombardy, the fifth and final 'Monument' of the season, on Sunday.
1. Primoz Roglic (SVN/Jumbo-Visma) 5hr 08min 08sec (average: 40.39 km/h), 2. Michael Woods (CAN/Education First) at 0:15sec, 3. Sergio Higuita (COL/Education First) same time, 4. Bauke Mollema (NED/Trek-Segafredo) at 0:17, 5. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/Movistar) s.t.
9. Egan Bernal (COL/Team Ineos) at 0:28sec