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Manuele Boaro spends day in strong breakaway, Alex Aranburu debuts with 7th at Milano-Sanremo

It was a good day for Astana Pro Team at the first Monument of the year, the legendary Italian classic race Milano-Sanremo: Manuele Boaro made part of a daily breakaway, spending in front the most part of the day, while Alex Aranburu, who debuted at La Classicissima, took a solid seventh place in the final.

- We wanted to do a nice race today and we had a strong team for that. At the meeting before start, it was decided to make our presence in the breakaway of the day, and I had to try to be in that group. I think, it was a good day for me, and I really enjoyed being in the leading group for the most part of the race. Also, we wanted to do something on the last long climb, but with so many sprinters still in game it was impossible. Honestly, I am really tired after this long and exhausting day, but in the same time I am happy with my performance, - said Manuele Boaro.

After many attempts to attack on the Poggio, finally, two riders, Julian Alaphilippe and Wout Van Aert broke away clear, opening a gap of 8 seconds on the top of the climb. The peloton tried to catch them back, but it did not work, and the leading duo played the race win in a head-to-head sprint, won by Van Aert.

The Australian Michael Matthews completed the podium with the third position, taking the sprint from the chasing group. Alex Aranburu, who did a very smart race today, was able to take a very solid 7th place. 

- It is my debut at the Milan-Sanremo, I did not know what to expect from myself in this long race with such a hot weather during the entire day. I never raced over 300 km before, but in the end, I can be proud with my performance. It was a very hard day, but I managed to stay in the first group and to make a good sprint. I started it a bit from behind, but I finished in the Top-10 and I think this is a very nice result for me. I think, that it was a very valuable experience for me, it will help me to keep on progressing in my development as a rider. For sure, I would like to come back to this race one more time and to try to improve my result. It is not easy to win here, but it is a goal worth to be aiming for, - said Alex Aranburu.

Another Astana Pro Team rider Gorka Izagirre did a good race as well, on the Poggio and later, on the final descent he was always up there in front, helping in chasing two leaders and supporting Alex Aranburu in sprint.

- Milano-Sanremo is always a very tough race, while this edition became even harder and open with more contenders, who could win it. I think, we can be happy with our race today. Seventh place of Alex Aranburu is really nice; it is not our maximum here, but still a very solid performance. We had some bad luck with Alexey Lutsenko and Davide Martinelli, who had some technical problems during the decisive moments, but in general, as a team, we did a good Milano-Sanremo, - added Giuseppe Martinelli, sports director of Astana Pro Team.

Photo credit: © Getty Images

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