On the Scene in Lecco for Il Lombardia

Report and photos from the finish of Il Lombardia.

My original plan was to drive to the top of the Ghisallo climb and watch Il Lombardia pass by there, but since it was raining, and I'd been to Ghisallo before, I opted to go to Lecco for the finish.

I stayed in the dry shelter of the press tent for just a moment too long to get photos of Rodriguez and Valverde finishing, but I did get a shot of third-place finisher Rafal Majka just after he crossed the line.

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Gilbert patted Van Avermaet on the back after they finished together, 1'07" down on Purito.

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Having stayed at the sharp end of the race all day, Basso looked serious after finishing eleventh.

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Gilbert, on the other hand, was all smiles as he faced the interviewers.

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Moreno:

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Pozzovivo:

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Visconti with his scraped-up shoulder:

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Giampaolo Caruso looked elated over his teammate Purito's victory.

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New world champion Rui Costa finished with Yuri Trofimov.

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The expressions on the faces of Chris Anker Sorensen and Maxime Bouet told a story of a long, hard day in the saddle.

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On the podium, Purito seemed overjoyed, and Valverde was smilier than Majka, who couldn't hide his disappointment.

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Valverde's little son was on his best behavior during a long podium ceremony including presentations of trophies and flowers, and the playing of the Spanish national anthem.

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Valverde reached out to Rodriguez for a friendly handshake.

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Everyone on the stage was startled by the loud sound of the confetti launcher.

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Valverde's kid goes for the prosecco:

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and the grownups soon followed.

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Valverde doing a post-podium interview:

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At the press conference, Purito was asked repeatedly about Valverde's controversial tactics a week earlier in Florence, and about whether winning Lombardia made up for losing Worlds, etc.  He remained diplomatic, saying only that Valverde saw one race (at Worlds) and he saw another, but that there was no point in talking any more about it. Although he was happy with his victory, he declined the invitation to say that winning Lombardia made up for the loss in Florence, and it was pretty clear that it did not.

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