The Italian Filippo Baroncini, 21, was proclaimed the U23 World Champion on the road, after winning alone this Friday the 161.1 km test between Antwerp and Leuven, in which the Eritrean Biniam Ghirmay hung the medal of silver and the Dutch Olav Kooij the bronze.
Baroncini – who is racing this season finale with the Trek-Segafredo team, with whom he has signed a contract until 2023 – was proclaimed runner-up in Europe two weeks ago in Trento, and now rounds off his triumphant year by wearing the rainbow jersey.
The Italian cemented his triumph with an accurate attack in the absence of six kilometers, in the last of the climbs to the Wijnpers level, 360 meters at 8%. On that climb, the main group, in which the Netherlands was in command, caught up with the Swiss Mauro Schmid, who escaped more than 10 km after attacking at a previous level.
It was at that moment that Baroncini emerged forcefully to open a small gap. At the end of the climb there was a break in the group, which the Italian took advantage of to increase his meager advantage to 10 seconds, which he maintained and increased strongly until he stood alone on the finish line.
He gave her time to celebrate his enormous success despite the fact that the main group, with about 40 cyclists, was just seconds away. The other two medals came with a portentous sprint by Eritrean Biniam Ghirmay (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert), who surpassed more than ten cyclists in the final meters to clinch silver, a historic World Cup medal for Eritrea and Africa; while Dutch Olav Kooij (Jumbo-Visma) took bronze.
In terms of riders from America, Brazilian Vinicius Rangel was the best placed in ninth position, while Americans Matthew Riccitello and Kevin Vermaerke finished in seats 36 and 41, respectively.
The Colombian team had in Santiago Buitrago with 52 the best task, while Juan Esteban Guerrero entered in 81, Heberth Alejandro Guitérrez in 102 and Jesús David Pena in 117. For its part, Ecuador had Harold Martin López (67), Joel Fuerte (112) and Nixon Efraín Rosero (127) to their three representatives.
Canada made 76 with Raphael Parisella, Mexico 88 with Jorge Peyrot, Uruguay 124 with Thomas Silva and Chile 126 with José Autran. 174 runners signed up for the race, but only 143 finished.