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6 April 2019

Martin conquers Etna, McNulty Sicily

24 hours after his first pro victory, Brandon McNulty (Rally-UHC) claimed the General Classification of Il Giro di Sicilia ahead of the winner of the final stage, Guillaume Martin (Wanty-Gobert) and Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec).

The first part of today’s stage saw a breakaway of 13 riders, brought back to the peloton 32km from the finish, led by the drive of Gazprom. On the first slopes of the Etna, first Simone Velasco and then Odd Christian Eiking tried to go solo, but with no success. In the final kilometers only five riders remained ahead: Guillaume Martin, Dayer Quintana, Fausto Masnada, Aleksandr Vlasov and the GC leader, McNulty. After an attack by Quintana, Martin launched the decisive move 1,600 meters from the line, winning stage 4 ahead of Masnada and Quintana, who arrived 10 and 13 seconds after the French rider. McNulty, fourth, has kept the jersey.

GENERAL CLASSIFICATION

1 – Brandon McNulty (Rally UHC Cycling)

2 – Guillaume Martin (Wanty – Gobert Cycling Team) at 42″

3 – Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec) at 56″

JERSEYS

Maglia Rossa e Gialla (red and yellow), general classification leader, sponsored by the Sicilian Region – Brandon McNulty (Rally UHC Cycling)

Maglia Arancione (orange), sprinter classification leader, sponsored by NamedSport – Manuel Belletti (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec)

Maglia Verde Pistacchio (pistacchio green), King of the Mountains classification leader, sponsored by Cantine Cellaro – Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec)

Maglia Bianca (white), young rider general classification leader, sponsored by the Ufficio Nazionale Israeliano del Turismo – citiesbreak.com – Brandon McNulty (Rally UHC Cycling)

STAGE RESULT

1 – Guillaume Martin (Wanty – Gobert Cycling Team) 128km in 3h37’34”, average speed 35.299kph

2 – Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec) at 10″

3 – Dayer Quintana (Neri Sottoli Selle Italia KTM) at 13″

PRESS CONFERENCE

Il Giro di Sicilia winner, Brandon McNulty, said: “It was a super hard day, I’m quite tired but also super excited. It was a fun race, not always great weather but always great support from the supporters. The next races will be in Portugal, then Fleche Wallonne, I hope to come back here next year, hopefully the weather will be better.”

The stage winner, Guillaume Martin, said: “In the book I wrote there is a chapter on Mount Etna and Rifugio Sapienza, where I imagine the cyclist-philosophers climbing Mount Etna, so it is special for me to win here. Cycling is never easy and winning is even more difficult, I am happy with this success. It would have been better to win the GC too but I don’t have the legs to beat Brandon McNulty. It’s great to race with these fans on the roads, you can feel their warmth, this is the land of cycling, of the history of cycling, and now I’m part of it too.

The Maglia Verde Pistacchio winner and second in the stage today, Fausto Masnada, said: “I am satisfied with my performance at this Giro di Sicilia, we have raced always on the front, and in the end I am second in today’s stage and third overall in GC. Now I look to the next goals, will focus on the preparation for the Giro d’Italia, I want to give my best at the Giro.

The Maglia Arancione winner, Manuel Belletti, said: “We rode very well, we were strong but Brandon McNulty was stronger. I’m happy to wear this jersey, and I’m also happy for Fauso, second on today’s finish, wearing also the Maglia Verde Pistacchio.

The President of the Sicilian Region, Nello Musumeci, said: “It was a proud moment to bring this historic race back to Sicily, which saw great crowds on the roads. It is a first step in view of the coming years, where we will also have the Giro d’Italia. For us this must be a promotion of the territory that, as the Sicilian Region, we want to develop to have not only tourists in the summer months but also out of season.

RCS Sport Cycling Director, Mauro Vegni, said: “Bringing back Il Giro di Sicilia was definitely a winning operation. This was the year zero of the race and there are all the conditions to make it grow even more. We have had some promising young winners that bode well for our sport.”

#IlGiroDiSicilia

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