Alberto Bettiol wins the yellow jersey at the Boucles de la Mayenne

Italian claims his first ever general-classification win

May 26, 2024

Surrounded by his teammates, with the yellow jersey tucked securely round his shoulders, Alberto Bettiol defended his overall lead during today’s third and final stage of the Boucles de la Mayenne.

At the end of the day, and for the first time in his life, the Italian stood on the top step of the GC podium at a professional stage race.

After his stunning stage-two win, where he took over the lead, Alberto was overjoyed that he could finish the job and proud of the work that he and his teammates did on the road, from the prologue at the Espace Mayenne to the finish of the final stage in Laval.

“It’s a good win,” Alberto said, before going to the podium. “I'm really happy to finally win a stage race in France. I was really close twice in the Étoile des Besseges. I’m really happy to win now at the Boucles de la Mayenne. Today, we saw more good teamwork.”

Marijn van den Berg, Jonas Rutsch, Stefan Bissegger, Owain Doull, and Jack Rootkin-Gray had to push hard to keep Alberto’s lead safe during another fast and furious day of racing out in the countryside of western France. The final circuit was particularly tricky—once they got into the city the peloton faced four laps on a criterium-like course. Not content to sit back and roll in as GC winner, Alberto went to the front and drove up the pace to bring back the break and try to set up Marijn van de Berg for a sprint win.

A crash inside the final kilometer scuppered their plans for a dream finish.

“Unfortunately, our sprinter, Marijn, couldn't sprint because of the crash in the last corner,” Alberto said. “Still it was a positive week with a nice win.”

With the start of the Tour de France just over a month away, Alberto has shown that he is in fine form. He wants to be at his best for the Grand Départ in his beloved Tuscany.

“I will go to the Tour de Suisse in a few weeks to continue my preparation for the Tour de France,” Alberto said. “This victory makes me confident. I come back with a good spirit from this win.”

Congratulations, Alberto! You’ve inspired all of us.

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