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Porte, Australia and Sky have defended their leads in the WorldTour rankings

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JAKOB FUGLSANG

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MAGNUS CORT

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RICHIE PORTE

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17.03.2015 @ 17:07 Posted by Jesper Johannesen

A devastating mountain attack on the key stage of Tirreno-Adriatico by Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) has netted the 25-year-old Colombian his first victory in Italy’s second biggest stage race, and simultaneously enabled Quintana to move into third place overall in the UCI WorldTour rankings.

 

Already the winner of the 2014 Giro d’Italia, Quintana now added a second prestigious UCI WorldTour stage race victory in Italy to his palmares. In a race where time gaps are often very small, Quintana completed the seven day race with a solid 18 second margin over Trek Factory Racing’s Bauke Mollema. Rigoberto Urán (Etixx-Quick Step), himself twice a runner up in the Giro d’Italia, was Colombia’s second rider on the Tirreno-Adriatico final podium, finishing third overall at 31 seconds.

 

Quintana’s victory, the 24th of his career to date, came after consistent racing in the opening short prologue at Lido di Camaiore, won by his Movistar teammate Adriano Malori. Then following two stages decided in bunch sprints, the Colombian lodged himself into the small group of overall favourites who finished close behind lone breakaway Wout Poels (Team Sky) following the tricky double ascent of the steep Crispiero climb late on stage four to Castelraimondo.

 

But the Colombian’s master stroke came on stage five to the Terminillo summit finish, breaking away alone as snow fell from a leaden sky 4.8 kilometres from the line. None of the other pre-race favourites could match Quintana’s solid burst of power, and his victory by 41 seconds over Mollema at the summit represented a knock-out blow by Quintana in the battle for the overall classification.

 

The new race leader successfully defended his advantage on the flat, rain-soaked stage to Porto Sant’Elpidio and Quintana turned in an equally solid performance on Tuesday’s final short time trial, won by Trek Factory Racing’s Fabian Cancellara.

 

“This victory is very important for me after crashing badly last year in the Vuelta a España,” Quintana said afterwards. “It’s been quite a while since I’ve felt as happy as I do today, it all goes to show why you have to work so hard and train so much over the winter.”

 

“I wasn’t relaxed in that final time trial, because it was very tough, a little bit longer and harder than the same stage last year. I went flat out and it proved to be enough not to lose the overall lead, so I’m very pleased about that.”

 

Overall in the UCI WorldTour individual rankings, Paris-Nice winner Richie Porte (Team Sky) remains comfortably in command with 198 points, ahead of fellow Australian Rohan Dennis (BMC Racing Team) with 114. Tirreno-Adriatico’s considerable effect on the overall ranking sees Quintana move into third overall, though with 106 points, whilst Mollema - in fifth place - and Urán - in eighth - are the two other new names in the UCI WorldTour top ten.

 

Australia continues to dominate the nations ranking in the UCI WorldTour with 403 points, but both Colombia and the Netherlands have made dramatic gains. Largely thanks to Urán and Quintana, Colombia now have 191 points and have jumped 11 places to second overall, whilst the Netherlands have moved to just two points behind the South American nation, in third place. France, too, has turned in a strong collective performance in Tirreno-Adriatico, moving up four places into fifth overall with 112 points.

 

The top ranking of the UCI WorldTour teams classification remains unchanged with Sky in the lead, with 290 points. However, last year’s winners of the classification, Movistar Team have closed the gap considerably on the top-ranked squad. The Spanish team have gained three places and are now lying second overall with 206 points, seven clear of BMC Racing Team, who drop to third with 199 points.

 

Next on the UCI WorldTour calendar is the first Classic of the 2015 series, Milano-Sanremo on Sunday March 22. The first of the five ‘Monuments’ in the cycling season, the Italian race ushers in a full month of top one-day racing in Europe, concluding with Liège-Bastogne-Liège in Belgium on April 26.

 

Individual

1. Richie Porte - Team Sky 198
2. Rohan Dennis - BMC Racing Team 114
3. Nairo Quintana - Movistar Team 106
4. Michal Kwiatkowski - Etixx - Quick Step 89
5. Bauke Mollema - Trek Factory Racing 84
6. Simon Spilak - Team Katusha 78
7. Cadel Evans - BMC Racing Team 76
8. Rigoberto Uran - Etixx - Quick Step 75
9. Rui Costa - Lampre - Merida 64
10. Tom Dumoulin - Team Giant - Alpecin 64
11. Thibaut Pinot - FDJ 60
12. Domenico Pozzovivo - AG2R La Mondiale 60
13. Thomas Geraint - Team Sky 54
14. Ruben Fernandez - Movistar Team 52
15. Alberto Contador - Tinkoff - Saxo 51
16. Tony Gallopin - Lotto Soudal 46
17. Daryl Impey - Orica GreenEDGE 39
18. Wout Poels - Team Sky 36
19. Jakob Fuglsang - Astana Pro Team 32
20. Gorka Izagirre - Movistar Team 32

Teams

1. Team Sky 290
2. Movistar 206
3. Etixx-QuickStep 170
4. BMC Racing Team 123
5. Trek Factory Racing 98
6. Lampre-Merida 97
7. Team Katusha 91
8. Tinkoff-Saxo 72
9. Lotto Soudal 66
10. Team Giant-Alpecin 66
11. FDJ 64
12. Ag2r La Mondiale 63
13. Orica GreenEDGE 61
14. Astana 38
15. IAM Cycling 17
16. Team LottoNL-Jumbo 4

Nations

1. Australia 403

2. Colombia 191
3. Netherlands 189
4. Spain 162
5. France 112
6. Poland 91
7. Italy 84
8. Slovenia 78
9. Great Britain 64
10. Portugal 64
11. South Africa 39
12. Denmark 33
13. Belgium 22
14. Slovakia 14
15. Switzerland 11
16. Germany 11
17. Norway 7
18. Czech Republic 6
19. New Zealand 4
20. Russia 3
21. Belarus 2
22. Argentina 1
23. USA 1
24. Austria 1

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