December 5, 2023

The roles were reversed: this time Formolo beat Hershey

As in 2022, the Veneto Classic is dominated by the UAE

Davide Formolo (Team UAE) celebrates his victory in the Veneto Classic. | Photo: Cor Foss

October 15, 2023 | (rsn) – Like last year, the Emirates Team celebrated a double victory at the end of the Italian road season. After finishing second behind his Swiss teammate Marc Hirschi in the Veneto Classic (I Professional) in 2022, Davide Formolo turned the tables this time and won the third edition of the one-day race after a difficult 195.7 kilometers from a mile to Bassano del Grappa in front of the defending champion.

The 30-year-old Italian broke away from the leading group of three with around four kilometers to go in the one-day race and took his second win of the season, 14 seconds ahead of Hirschi. Formolo’s compatriot Filippo Zanna (Jaico – AlUla) remained only in third place, 16 seconds behind, followed by Andrea Vendram (AG2R Citroën / +0:28), the third Italian in the top five, and Dane Andreas Krohn (Lotto – Dstny / +) 0: 28).

This is how the Veneto Classic match went:

While organizers changed the route of the Giro del Veneto this time, the route of the Veneto Classic remains unchanged. After about 80 kilometers of hills, we went on the first circuit that we had to ride four times, which was 12.6 kilometers long and included 2.6 kilometers and a steep 6.3 percent climb to La Rosina.

Then there were four laps of roughly the same length with the downhill to La Tessa, which was only 300 meters long but was as steep as 15 percent, before the last 15 kilometers involved two more lifts: the first was unpaved and up to 14 kilometers. A steep 1.2 kilometers to Diesel Farm, and finally 400 meters of 10.3 percent to Contra Soarda await the riders, followed by five technical kilometres, first downhill and then flat to the finish on narrow roads to the finish.

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Marco Frigo (Israel – Premier Tech), Joey Rosskopf (Q36.5) and Michael Belleri (PC – Carrera) initially dominated the event as a separate trio, before Milan Menten (Lotto – Destiny) began a chasing pack with his attack in the final 50km, which It included Formolo and Stefano Oldani (Alpecin-Dessoninck), Natnaile Tesfatsion (Liddell-Trek) and Eric Vetter (Iolo-Cometa), who caught up with the leaders 33 kilometers from the finish.

On the cobblestone slope leading to La Tessa, Formolo, Oldani and Tsfatsion bumped into their companions, who were quickly replaced by the field of about 50 riders. Shortly afterwards, the first trio was reinforced by Anton Charmig (Uno-X), Benoît Cosnefroi (AG2R Citroën) and Formulalo teammate Mathieu Trentin. With 22 kilometers remaining, Israel–Premier Tech led the chasers and the six rounded the Emirati pros.

Veneto Classic III profile | Image: Organizer

On the final crossing of the La Tisa climb, Cosnefroy briefly separated the field with a huge increase in speed, but on the approach to Diesel Farm the leading group had grown to around 40 riders again. With four riders, Uno-X led the field on the penultimate climb of the day. On the narrow, steep gravel lane leading to the diesel farm, Zanna took off, Hirschi could only follow briefly and was eight seconds behind Zanna at the top, but the Swiss champion caught up again at the end of the race. A pedigree that also ran on gravel.

Seven kilometers from the finish, Hershey’s teammate Formolo also moved to the front, while Kroon and Samuel Battistelli (Astana Kazakhstan) were breathing down their necks, just a few seconds behind. After neutralizing last year’s winner’s onslaught, Zanna was forced to let Formolo go shortly afterwards on the final short climb of the day.

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In the final four kilometres, last year’s second-place finisher increased his lead meter by meter on a flat but very winding road, with Hirschi managing to stay in the slippery Zana stream. Last year’s Italian champion did not give up, but he could not get closer to his compatriot, who not only took the win with confidence, but was also happy with the second place finish of Hershey, who easily beat Ghana in the cobblestone lane to the finish line.

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