Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) rolled back the years to win a tense Gran Premio Bruno Beghelli after a late attack inside the final 5 kilometres. The Spaniard was part of a strong group that formed on the final climb and attacked on the descent towards the line. His solo move caught the sprinters in the lead group off-guard and Sanchez quickly built up a 12 second lead. He held on to take his first win of the season while Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida) took second and Elia Viviani (Team Sky) finished in third.
The race came down to the final lap of a testing circuit with Astana, Team Sky, Bahrain Merida and Orica Scott amongst the main protagonists.
On the final Zappolino ascent, Alberto Bettiol (Cannondale Drapac) stretched out the field with Michael Albasini (Orica Scott) and Michael Valgren (Astana) paying close attention.
Sanchez and a number of other riders linked up with the leaders as the race crested the final climb with 8km remaining. It looked as though the group of around 10 riders would decide the race in a sprint finish but Sanchez had other ideas. With just under 5,000m to go he took off and established a lead of over ten seconds as hesitation swept through the field.
While there were a number of sprinters in the chase group they lacked support and teammates, and neither Colbrelli or Viviani were willing to lead a chase of Sanchez until it was too late.
The Team Sky rider attempted a late acceleration in a bid to mount a final chase but with the kilometre flag in sight Sanchez already knew that the win was his. He eventually crossed the line with a few seconds in hand on Colbrelli and Viviani. Albasini and Bettiol rounded out the top five.
You can read more at Cyclingnews.com