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"Pozzato spent a lot of energy to get back to the group on several occasions. He was well-supported by his teammates but in the end your pay for these efforts," Maini says

Photo: Sirotti

E3 HARELBEKE

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FILIPPO POZZATO

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SACHA MODOLO

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UAE TEAM EMIRATES

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29.03.2014 @ 12:04 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Filippo Pozzato (Lampre-Merida had hoped to return to his best form in yesterday's E3 Harelbeke but was never part of the race. Several crash set the former winner of the race back and he finished far back in 79th, 5.08 behind winner Peter Sagan.

 

In 2009 Filippo Pozzato won the E3 Harelbeke to put himself in a position as one of the red-hot favourites for the Tour of Flanders. This year he hoped to repeat that performance when he returned to the Belgian race for his first taste of Belgian cobbles in 2014.

 

Pozzato had a very bad first season with Lampre-Merida where he failed to hit peak condition for his beloved classics. This year he has done less racing and instead spent a long time at altitude to prepare for his biggest races.

 

However, the former Flanders runner-up got his campaign off to bad start. Several crashes held both him and his Lampre-Merida teammates back and in the end he paid dearly for his many chase efforts as he was unable to stay with the best. He finished a disappointing 79th and was the only rider from the Italian team to reach the finish.

 

In addition to Pozzato's run of bad luck, Sacha Modolo hit the deck while Elia Favilli had two punctures.

 

"These are the classics of Belgium, with all unexpected things and surprises," sports director Orlando Maini said. "We found ourselves having to deal with perhaps too many obstacles, which have affected our performance and that wasn't ideal.


"Pozzato spent a lot of energy to get back to the group on several occasions. He was well-supported by his teammates but in the end your pay for these efforts.


"Modolo hit the ground while he was performing really well, showing the right attitude. Now the masseurs have to take care of the contusion to his back.

 

"Accidents are part of the race, we have to be good to put ourselves in a position in which the unexpected does not affect the final performance."

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