Romo shines in his debut stage race for Astana – Premier Tech
Javier Romo showed his enormous potential as a General Classification rider by securing fifth overall at Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali, after crossing the line in eighth place on the fifth and final stage.
The 22-year-old Spanish neo pro recorded a second consecutive top ten stage result, after narrowly missing the win on stage four, when he sprinted to second place in San Marino.
“Today there was a breakaway with some really strong riders and the leader’s team controlled the situation and the breakaway’s advantage. So we caught them as we reached the final lap. I attacked on the last climb but it wasn’t enough and I wasn’t able to go clear. I have really enjoyed this beautiful race together with the team and I am looking forward to my next race in Spain. I will line up at GP Indurain next where I will work to help the team get a victory,” said Romo.
The peloton faced another tough day on undulating terrain, with seven laps of a 22-kilometre circuit around Forli on the cards. A six-rider breakaway went clear and after building a maximum advantage of three minutes, the peloton slowly brought them back inside the second half of the stage.
After the catch was made at the start of the final lap, Romo found himself in the select group of 15 riders in the lead with 10 kilometres remaining. However, a late attack from race leader Jonas Vingegaard and fellow Dane Mikkel Honoré in the closing kilometres proved fruitful with Honoré taking the win and Vingegaard securing the overall victory.
Romo sprinted to eighth place on the stage from the reduced chase group to claim his first top five General Classification result as a professional rider, a sign of things to come for the talented Spaniard. Colombian Rodrigo Contreras finished just outside of the top ten on the General Classification in 13th place.
Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali
Stage 5: Forlì > Forlì (166km)
Top 3: 1. Mikkel Honoré (Deceuninck – QuickStep), 2. Jonas Vingegaard (Team Jumbo – Visma), 3. Shane Archibold (Deceuninck – QuickStep).
Astana – Premier Tech top 3: 8. Javier Romo, 38. Rodrigo Contreras, 49. Nikita Stalnov
Top 3 on GC: 1. Jonas Vingegaard (Team Jumbo – Visma), 2. Mikkel Honoré (Deceuninck – QuickStep), 3. Nick Schultz (Team BikeExchange)
Astana – Premier Tech top 3 on GC: 5. Javier Romo, 13. Rodrigo Contreras, 56. Nikita Stalnov
Photo: Getty Images