Julian Alaphilippe enjoys winning debut in Piazza del Campo

Julian Alaphilippe enjoys winning debut in Piazza del Campo

Julian Alaphilippe won Strade Bianche on his debut outing on Saturday after the Frenchman attacked Jakob Fuglsang in the final 200 metres to claim his Deceuninck-Quick Step squad their fourth win in a week.

After almost five hours in the saddle, the 26-year-old Alaphilippe was able to produce a late burst of speed that shook off Astana rider Fuglsang at the end of the 184-kilomtere race around the white gravel roads of Tuscany.

“It’s unbelievable,” said Alaphilippe afterwards. “I was focused all day on the finale. I was lucky to never crash nor have a flat tyre. My team did a great job in protecting me. 

“Jakob Fuglsang was very strong, but I made no mistake. However, I wasn’t confident in winning until the last corner. This is a wonderful victory.”

Wout Van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), the former cyclo-cross specialist who finished third on his debut last year, again took the final step of the podium following a brave ride from the 24-year-old Belgian.

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