Cycling Live

Milano - Sanremo - Road race - Men

Live Comments

  1. 16:20 - Thanks for joining us today - and be sure to return for the forthcoming cobbles classics: the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.

  2. 0km - Top five: 1. Alexander Kristoff (Katusha), 2. Fabian Cancellara (Trek), 3. Ben Swift (Sky), 4. Juan Jose Lobato (Movistar), 5. Mark Cavendish (OPQS).

  3. 0km - Peter Sagan could only take 10th place in the spring, one behind defending champion Gerald Ciolek.

  4. 0km - Cavendish and Modolo were ahead with 100m to go but Kristoff finished with gusto to take the win.

  5. 0km - Swift takes third place, with Lobato fourth and Cavendish fifth.

  6. 0km - Cancellara shakes his first as he crosses the line in second place!

  7. 0km - Cavendish looks to be in a strong position but he tires fast in the closing 100m and Kristoff takes the victory!

  8. 0.5km - Greipel too far back it seems, but Cavendish is posed...

  9. 0.8km - Ciolek, Cancellara and Sagan still there...

  10. 1km - Katusha setting the pace for Kristof through Paolini. Under the kite!

  11. 1.5km - Greipel was dropped towards the top of the Poggio, but he's back on the pack now - but at what cost? Cavendish is still there too.

  12. 2km - There's a Bardiani rider off the front, but it's going to come back together, with about 25 riders hot in pursuit. It's Colbrelli. But he's caught.

  13. 3km - Towards the bottom of the descent, van Avermaet has a dig, but it looks like it will be a big group that heads towards the line together.

  14. 4km - Mollema leads, with van Avermaet on his wheel, then Bennati and Puccio.

  15. 5km - It's a nervous descent for the pack... and it's Bauke Mollema, not Nordhaug, who leads for Belkin.

  16. 6km - Lars Petter Nordhaug of Belkin puts in a dig just ahead of the summit, with Gilbert in his wheel. Downhill time!

  17. 6.5km - Now it's Luca Paolini on the front, the hot-tea-hand man.

  18. 7km - ATTACK BY PHILIPPE GILBERT! He's covered by Daniele Bennati and then it comes back together. The net result sees Battaglin and Rast reeled in.

  19. 7.5km - Salvatore Puccio sets the pace on the front for Sky in pursuit of Battaglin and Rast.

  20. 8km - Nibali off the back of the group now, paying for his efforts.

  21. 8.2km - It's not a Cannondale rider - it's the similarly bright colours of Bardiani. And it's Enrico Battaglin. The favourites aren't reacting...

  22. 8.5km - Attack by Gregory Rast of Trek Factory Racing, perhaps setting things up for Cancellara. He's been joined by a Cannondale rider.

  23. 9km - Game over for Nibali! The Lotto-led peloton are closing in...

  24. 9.5km - Nibali starts the climb with only 12 seconds to play with...

  25. 10km - They're onto the Poggio! Trek and Cannonale edge forward, as does Tinkoff-Saxo.

  26. 11km - Sky, BMC and Lotto-Belisol setting the pace. Nibali just 26 seconds ahead now and looks to be tiring.

  27. 12km - The Poggio is a 3.7km climb with a max gradient of 8% and an average of 3.7%. Tjallingi is caught by the peloton.

  28. 13km - Nibali launches himself towards the Poggio... expect the action to hapen then. Tjallingii trails the Italian by 33 seconds. Chapeau!

  29. 13.5km - Cancellara, Sagan and Cavendish all safely in this main pack. Philippe Gilbert there too.

  30. 14km - Boasson Hagen is with Swift now, and another Sky rider. No sign of Thomas though.

  31. 15km - De Marchi is back on the front now. Nibali has 48 seconds ahead.

  32. 18km - There's a rider off the front of the pack and six riders are in pursuit, with a few others trying to join. It's closed down, but there are just 40 riders now, if that.

  33. 20km - Nibali has caught and passed Tjallingii and de Maar. He's a superb descender and much fresher than the two escapees.

  34. 22km - The main pack is about 50-strong. The two leaders, Tjallingii and de Maar are approaching the summit. And over they go, with Nibali passing 13 seconds later and the peloton another 25 seconds later. Greipel and Cavendish are both there still - just the Poggio to go.

  35. 23km - No panic from the pack, with De Marchi and Sagan still controlling the pace. Nibali is closing in on the leaders - just 20 seconds to go. The Cipressa is a 5.6km climb with a max gradient of 9% and an average of 4.1%.

  36. 24km - The last rider to win Milan-San Remo after an attack on the Cipressa was Gabriele Colombo in 1996 - so the odds are stacked against Nibali here...

  37. 24.5km - Degenkolb and Ciolek are there, as are Greipel and van Avermaet. Nibali only has about 15 seconds on the pack, and trails the two leaders by 45 seconds.

  38. 25km - ATTACK BY VINCENZO NIBALI! The Astana rider does what we expected and attacks on the Cipressa. He'll hope to use his downhill skills to stretch out in front, and then repeat that on the Poggio. But he's not making much headway, despite catching Matteo Bono.

  39. 25.5km - Now we see Sky: Ben Swift has moved to the front, just behind De Marchi and Sagan. Cavendish is there but further back. It's now just Tjallingi and de Maar out in front - they have 1'20" over the pack.

  40. 26km - Sagan is in the wheel of a Cannondale team-mate - Alessandro de Marchi - with Degenkolb and some Giant riders in his wheel. The pack has been blown apart!

  41. 26.5km - We're onto the Cipressa climb now and both Giant and Cannondale come to the front.

  42. 27km - Jan Barta is mopped up by the pack. Still no sign at all from Team Sky.

  43. 28km - The Lotto Belisol team of Andre Greipel have come to the front - the Gorilla must be feeling good today.

  44. 31km - Still Katusha and Cannondale drive the pace, with BMC moving forward too. The gap is 2'30". The likes of Degenkolb, Greipel, Cavendish, Sagan and Kristoff are all there...

  45. 33km - The rain jackets are coming off now as the business end of the 2014 Milan-San Remo approaches. The gap for the three leaders is 2'50".

  46. 35km - At the finish line they have machines hoovering up and pumping out the water - there's about an inch or so of water on the tarmac.

  47. 36km - The lead is dropped under the three-minute mark now for the three leaders. There's a fairly big grupetto forming, including Astana's Enrico Gasparotto.

  48. 39km - The peloton has regrouped and British fans will be hapy to hear that Mark Cavendish, the national champion, is right in the thick of things.

  49. 40km - Jan Barta has been dropped by the leaders and is struggling back on. Tjallingii, de Maar and Bono combine well on the front - they're not going to wait for the fourth man. The gap back to the peloton is 3'45".

  50. 41km - Matteo Bono has been on the front of the four-man group for quite a while, and it's the Lampre man that leads the escapees onto the Capo Berta. Back in the peloton and there are some major splits, with 50-odd riders out in front and numerous spliter groups trying to fight back on.

  51. 43km - The gap is down to 4'30" off the back of the Capo Cervo.

  52. 44km - Canondale and Katusha have edged to the front of the peloton.

  53. 46km - They're falling like flies now - Diego Ulissi of Lampre is back in his team car.

  54. 47km - Bad news for Mark Cavendish: both Michal Kwiatkowski and Mark Renshaw have abandoned.

  55. 49km - Luca Paolini is actually squirting a bidon of warm tea on his gloved hands. Earl Grey or English Breakfast?

  56. 50km - The four leaders have 5'30" as they move onto the Capo Mele.

  57. 51km - Mark Cavendish, like Paolini, is towards the back of the peloton. He looks fairl miserable and has some OPQS team-mates around him. Cav's not a fan of the cold and will probably struggle on the final climbs.

  58. 52km - Italian Luca Paolini not only has that bushy beard but also a red neckerchief to combat the cold.

  59. 53km - Bono and Tjallingii aren't wearing leg warmers, but Barta and de Maar are. They are the remaining riders of that initial seven-man group that broke clear early on during the race.

  60. 55km - Parrinello has now been dropped by the leaders, which is not a surprise - he was really struggling. Jonathan Hivert of Belkin has withdrawn. It's been a miserable birthday for the Frenchman.

  61. 58km - The Trek Factory team of Fabian Cancellara and the Giant team of John Degenkolb are setting the pace now on the front of the pack. It's getting much faster now.

  62. 60km - The riders are approaching the three "captains" - Capo Mele, Capo Cervo and Capo Berta. These are back-to-back small lumps on the coast that act as an hors d'oeuvre ahead of the Cipressa and the Poggio.

  63. 62km - The helicopter images are going crazy with the tiny Gallinara Island, which has a small protected port, a ruined castle and one old building atop its wooded peak. It's apparently a shelter for the Herring Gull, with one of the largest colonies in the Mediterranean.

  64. 66km - Parrinello is spending a lot of time back with his team car behind the leaders - probably to get a series of very long sticky bidons. Which is strange, because the Androni-Giocattoli car has a camera inside it which makes it all fairly incriminating...

  65. 68km - Koen de Kort of Giant-Shimano is on the back of the pack trying to get some warmth into his hands by giving them a good shake. It's pretty miserable for everyone right now.

  66. 72km - The five leaders pass through the second feed zone at Ceriale. Still no sign of Haas, who will have to decide whether there's any point trying to return on to the wheels of the escapees.

  67. 75km - Puncture for Nathan Haas of Garmin-Sharp! The Australian needs a new wheel and we now have just five men up front.

  68. 77km - Fabian Cancellara has slowed to report to his team car. Spartacus will be one of the favourites today. He's getting a new, drier paid of gloves.

  69. 80km - The escapees now have 6'45" on the pack. They're all grimacing quite a bit - especially Tjallingii, who the TV camera seems to have a fixation on.

  70. 82km - Tjallingii is rummaging around for something in his back pocket. The rain is easing up a little but it's still pretty grim out there.

  71. 86km - The six leaders - Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare) - have six minutes on the peloton. Nicola Boem (Bardiani-CSF) rides solo between the two after being dropped by the escapees.

  72. 87km - The wind is pretty strong too and every rider is sporting arm warmers, while the leg warmer ratio is about 1:1.

  73. 88km - Tom Stamsnijder of Giant is setting the pace in the podium. He's a huge unit.

  74. 90km - Thunder and lightning reported from the finish at San Remo. This is going to get pretty brutal. Giant-Shimano and Trek Factory have come to the front with Cannondale. The leaders have lost Nicola Boem, so they're down to six.

  75. 96km - Saying that, there's one man entirely in green setting the pace for Cannondale. The seven leaders are taking it in turns with short pulls on the front. There's a lot of water on the road.

  76. 100km - All the rain coats are on now, the peloton a sea of black making it hard to see who's who.

  77. 110km - The gap for the seven leaders is back to 7'50" as they edge their way along the coast with the sea to their left. The first rain drops are beginning to fall on the Cipressa climb, which comes in about 90km - around two hours of racing.

  78. 115km - Mechanical problem for the race favourite, Peter Sagan. But the Slovakian is soon back in the pack after some pacing by his Cannondale team-mates.

  79. 120km - Since the last Italian won the race (Filippo Pozzato in 2006) we've had victories for Spain (Oscar Freire twice, 2007 and 2010), a Swiss (Fabian Cancellara in 2008), a Briton (Mark Cavendish in 2009), two Australians (Matthew Goss in 2011 and Simon Gerrans in 2012) and a German (Gerald Ciolek in 2013).

  80. 125km - Eurosport TV pundit Daniel Lloyd is reporting the first drops of rain at the finish in San Remo...

  81. 130km - It's very grey and miserable on the Mediterranean coast now - be prepared for an epic, messy finish.

  82. 140km - It's 6'55" for the seven leaders as they hit the coast. They are: Parrinello, Boem, Tjallingii, Haas, Bono, Barta and De Maar.

  83. 145km - Another withdrawal to report: Stefan Denifl of IAM Cycling.

  84. 150km - It's the Cannondale team of Peter Sagan who set a fast pace in the peloton going over the top of the Turchino pass. In fact, around 30 riders have been blown off the back so a first selection is being made ahead of the windy coastal roads.

  85. 155km - The lead has dropped to seven minutes for the seven men out in front, clearly tiring fast on the Passo del Turchino. Meanwhile, Europcar's Bjorn Thurau has withdrawn from the race.

  86. 160km - Milan-San Remo is also known as 'La Primavera' - but the weather is far from springlike. Heavy rain continues to pound down on the peloton - although the leaders appear to have hit a dry patch. The latest news is that the grey clouds are honing in on the coastal finish town of San Remo, which earlier today was engulfed in a blue, clement sky. The peloton recently passed the feed zone.

  87. 165km - Girardengo six wins in San Remo are not the record for 'La Classicissima'. That belongs to the great Eddy Merckx, who notched 7 wins in 11 years back in his pomp. "They say Milan-San Remo is a lottery but do you know many who, like me, won the jackpot seven times with the same winning ticket?" Merckx has a point...

  88. 165km - The riders passed through the town of Novi Ligure earlier, the home town of Costante Girardengo, the original 'Campionissimo', who has the most podiums in Milan-San Remo: 11 (including six wins).

  89. 170km - A reminder of the seven leaders, who formed a group off the front after about 15km of riding this morning: Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare).

  90. 175km - The riders are onto the nursery slopes of the Passo del Turchino, a long 25km climb with a maximum gradient of 6.8%. It was at the top of this climb last year that the riders got into their team buses with ice-encrusted helmets ahead of the shuttle to the coast. There'll be no such luck this year: they will still have 150-odd kilometres remaining once they go over the top.

  91. 180km - The heavy rain is causing a few problems back in the peloton, which has slowed considerably. This will play into the hands of the seven men out in front. One rider who loves the cold is Heinrich Haussler of IAM. The German-born Australian is known for never wearing gloves - even in sub-zero temperatures...

  92. 190km - The gap for the seven leaders has grown to 10'30 as the weather further deteriorates.

  93. 195km - There's a hail storm on the Turchino at the moment. The riders are still about 30km away from the first climb of the day but they will not be pleased with that news...

  94. 198km - The weather is frightful - heavy rain and a temperature of only seven degrees. The seven leaders have 9'50 over the peloton with just under 200km left to ride. The riders will be pleased to know, however, that it's currently sunny on the coast - so once they get over the Passo del Turchino things will improve.

  95. 200km - It's been reported that Rojas withdrew from the race after a crash in the neutral zone this morning. More on that when we get it. Some other riders to watch today include perpetual livewire Sylvain Chavanel (IAM), Orica-GreenEdge's Darryl Impey, FDJ's Arthur Vichot and OPQS pair Michael Kwiatkowski and Zedenek Stybar.

  96. 205km - The gap is around 9'30 for the seven leaders, with the teams of the big favourites so far taking it easy in the peloton.

  97. 210km - After two hours of racing, the peloton whizzes through Fausto Coppi's home town of Tortona. The average speed so far is 44kmph.

  98. 220km - Other names to consider: the Italians Luca Paolini (Katusha), Davide Appollonio (Ag2R), Andrea Guardini (Astana), Sonny Colbrelli (Bardiani-CSF), Daniele Bennati (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Lampre pair Diego Ulissi and Pippo Pozzato, although Ulissi would have much prefered the Pompeiana climb in the schedule - so perhaps we'll have to wait another year for him to make a splash. Frenchman Bryan Coquard (Europcar) is fast but the youngster may not have the stamina in this long race.

  99. 225km - It's raining now on the peloton. Not a torrential shower, just some spitting drizzle - like sitting in the front row at a West End theatre when Michael Gambon is performing.

  100. 228km - Who else can win in San Remo? Italians Matteo Pelucchi (IAM) and Sacha Modolo (Lampre) are in fine fettle, as is Frenchman Arnaud Demare (FDJ). Russian Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) is a consistent finisher, while BMC trio Philippe Golbert, Greg van Avermaet and Thor Hushovd cannot be discounted. Team Sky oddly chose not to select Ian Stannard, despite the Omloop winner's sixth place last year. Sky have put their eggs in the dual basket of Geraint Thomas and Edvald Boasson Hagen.

  101. 230km - The seven leaders have a gap of 8'55 over the peloton. A reminder of those escapees: Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare).

  102. 234km - Another name on the tip of many people's tongue is that of John Degenkolb. The German is in superb form, with five wins so far this season. With compatriot Marcel Kittel sitting this one out, Degenkolb is Giant-Shimano's man for Milan-San Remo - and, like Sagan, he's a dab-hand at getting over the climbs in a good position.

  103. 235km - The big favourite today is Peter Sagan of Cannondale. The Slovakian was second last year in those horrific conditions, just pipped to the line by surprise package Ciolek of MTN-Qhubeka). Sagan is yet to win a Monument - but surely it's a matter of when, not if. He's so good on the hills, and should he shed the main sprinters, he'll be odds-on to win from a small leading group.

  104. 236km - Mark Cavendish (OPQS) and Andre Greipel (Lotto Belisol) are among the favourites today. Both sprinters were going to give the race a miss, but the unexpected pre-2009 course (with no La Manie or Pompeiana climbs) gives them fresh hope. It remains to be seen if they have the right conditioning - although Cav did win a stage recently on Tirreno-Adriatico.

  105. 238km - Australian pair Matthew Goss and Simon Gerrans are absent: 2011 winner Goss was not selected for the Orica-GreenEdge squad, while his team-mate Gerrans, winner in 2012, has withdrawn because of illness.

  106. 240km - We have quite a few former winners of La Classicissima: Alessandro Petacchi (2005) will be working for his Omega Pharma-Quick Step team-mate Mark Cavendish (2009). Fabian Cancellara (2008) is one to watch if he can break away on the descent of the Poggio, while Filippo Pozzato (2006) and last year's surprise winner, Gerald Ciolek, will look to be in the mix should it come down to a bunch sprint.

  107. 240km - The seven leaders now have 9'15 over the pack but it's very early days. There was some rain at the start in Milan but it's cleared up now - even though the clouds still look fairly ominous.

  108. 240km - It's a notoriously hard race to predict, Milan-San Remo - this year especially. The early talk was all about an alteration in the course to include the controversial Pompeiana climb. But a landslide means that both this ascent - and the climb up Le Manie - have been taken out of the 294km route. So, a race that was meant to favour the punchy climbers is now one that will suit the sprinters - many of whom changed their schedules to be available to ride.

  109. 242km - WITHDRAWAL: Spain's Jose Joaquim Rojas of Movistar has called it a day. A nifty sprinter, he was a solid outside bet for today.

  110. 242km - Tjallingii and Barta were the men who instigated the break, soaring clear of the pack after about 15km of racing. Australian Haas was the first to close the gap, before the three leaders were joined by the four other escapees to form a seven-man leading group.

  111. 245km - The seven leaders are: Matteo Bono (Lampre Merida), Nathan Haas (Garmin-Sharp), Nicola Boem (Bardiani), Antonio Parrinello (Androni Giocattoli), Maarten Tjallingii (Belkin), Jan Barta (Netapp-Endura) and Marc de Maar (UnitedHealthCare).

  112. 250km - We join the race about 45km into the long 294-km race and we have a break of seven riders rolling across the Po valley with an eight-minute gap over the peloton.

  113. 294km - Hello and welcome to live coverage of the 105th Milan-San Remo spring classic - the first Monument of the season. It's a 294-kilometre beast which looks to be dominated by a sprinter who can also climb and descent...