Wout van Aert has finished third in the Strade Bianche, just like he did in last year’s edition. On the final climb to the Piazza del Campo in Siena, the Belgian leader of Team Jumbo-Visma only saw winner Julian Alaphilippe and Jakob Fuglsang finish ahaed of him.
Van Aert rode attentively on the white gravel roads through the Tuscan landscape and impressed all day long. With about twenty kilometres to go, Van Aert attacked in the company of Jakob Fuglsang and Julian Alaphilippe.
On the short but steep Colle Pinzuto the pace was a little too high for the Belgian. On willpower he managed to return to the front going into the final kilometre, after which he managed to secure the podium at his own pace.
Wout van Aert:
"I really rode at my limit in the last kilometres. The last half-hour was really tough. I am glad that I survived and finished on the podium again. The third place was the highest possible today”, Van Aert said. “On the penultimate gravel section the pace was a bit too high for me and I had to let them go. It was still a long way to the finish, but I continued to pull and I didn’t give up. I was able to return to the front when we went on to the final climb, but I had already given too much to be able to attack. I am very happy with this third place. The feeling was good and it's a moral boost for the upcoming classics. Strade Bianche is a great race and if you want to win here, everything has to fall into place. It is also a race in which the attackers get rewarded for their efforts. And attacking is exactly what I did. I will definitely come back here to try and battle for the win."
(source: Jumbo Visma)