Lined up this weekend in the hilly departments of Ardèche and Drôme, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux took part this Sunday in the Drôme Classic (1.Pro, 27/02), with more than ten climbs listed and an explosive final towards the finish line in Étoile-sur-Rhône.
The Belgian World Team had first controlled the gap with the morning breakaway of five riders, notably sending Simone Petilli at the front of the peloton. The work of the Italian climber contributed to closing the gap until bringing the peloton back on the heels of the fugitives at the foot of the first passage of the Wall of Allex, located 66 kilometers from the finish.
Behind a quintet out in the Col de la Grande Limite, Lorenzo Rota and Hugo Page participated in the pursuit for their leader Biniam Girmay. The Eritrean then reacted to attacks from world champion Alpahilippe and Primoz Roglic to tackle the final climb in the first chasing group. The 21-year-old sprinted to seventh place, repeating his result in the same event last year. Rota, who grabbed a top 15 the day before in the Faun-Ardèche Classic, finished 18th.