PNC15_Carte generique_sans legendeWhere: Italy
When: March 9-15 2016
Rank: UCI WorldTour

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) took his first WorldTour stage race victory at the 2016 Tirreno-Adriatico, beating runner-up Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) by one solitary second.

The Belgian had taken over the general classification lead from Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-QuickStep) after winning the race’s sixth stage in a sprint with Sagan, and needed to place within seven seconds of the world champion in the closing stage seven time trial.

>>> Greg Van Avermaet vs Peter Sagan: A new rivalry?

While Fabian Cancellara (Trek-Segafredo) rode to victory in the TT in his typical fashion, Sagan posted a decent time on the board that looked like he might seal his first WorldTour general classification victory, but Van Avermaet hit the line with barely a second spare.

The GC had been very tightly packed coming into the final stage with the biggest story of the race surely the cancelled fifth day of the Italian race.

Organisers RCS Sport decided to cancel the queen stage, using the UCI’s Extreme Weather Protocol, which featured a summit finish in the Apennine Mountains and would have seen the climbers make more gains at the top of the GC.

While most riders seemed comfortable with the decision to ensure safety ahead of staging the race, some riders and teams like Vincenzo Nibali and his Astana squad were unhappy with the cancellation, and threatened to pull out from future RCS races like the Giro d’Italia.

Nevertheless, the race continued with some closely fought, attacking stages, with Van Avermaet ending the week as the first Belgian since Roger de Vlaeminck in 1977 to win the Tirreno-Adriatico overall.

Final general classification
1. Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing in 20-42-22
2. Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff at 1 sec
3. Bob Jungels (Lux) Etixx-QuickStep at 23 secs
4. Sebastien Reichenbach (Swi) FDJ at 24 secs
5. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) FDJ at 24 secs
6. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana at 29 secs
7. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixxx-QuickStep at 33 secs
8. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky at 39 secs
9. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo at 45 secs
10. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff at 48 secs

Tirreno-Adriatico 2016: Stages

Stage one, March 9, Lido di Camaiore, 22.7km (TTT) | Report
Stage two, March 10, Camaiore to Pomarance, 207km | Report
Stage three, March 11, Castelnuovo Val di Cecina to Montalto di Castro, 176km | Report
Stage four, March 12, Montalto di Castro to Foligno, 216km | Report
Stage five, March 13, Foligno to Monte San Vicino, 178km | Cancelled
Stage six, March 14, Castelraimondo to Cepagatti, 210km | Report
Stage seven, March 15, San Benedetto del Tronto, 10.1km (ITT) | Report

Tirreno-Adriatico 2016: Teams

Ag2r La Mondiale (France)
Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec (Italy)
Astana (Kazakhstan)
Bardiani CSF (Italy)
Bora-Argon 18 (Germany)
Caja Rural-Seguros RGA (Spain)
Cannondale (USA)
CCC Sprandi Polkowice (Poland)
Dimension Data (RSA)
Etixx-QuickStep (Belgium)
FDJ (France)
Giant-Alpecin (Germany)
IAM Cycling (Switzerland)
Katusha (Russia)
Lampre-Merida (Italy)
Lotto-Soudal (Belgium)
LottoNL-Jumbo (Netherlands)
Movistar (Spain)
Orica-GreenEdge (Australia)
Team Sky (Great Britain)
Tinkoff (Russia)
Trek-Segafredo (USA)

Click here for the latest start list.

Tirreno-Adriatico 2016: Recent winners

2016 Greg Van Avermaet
2015 Nairo Quintana
2014 Alberto Contador
2013 Vincenzo Nibali
2012 Vincenzo Nibali
2011 Cadel Evans
2010 Stefano Garzelli
2009 Michele Scarponi
2008 Fabian Cancellara
2007 Andreas Kloden
2006 Thomas Dekker

Tirreno-Adriatico: Last year’s top ten (2015)

1. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar
2. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek Factory Racing at 18 secs
3. Rigoberto Uran (Col) Etixx-QuickStep at 31 secs
4. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) FDJ at 35 secs
5. Alberto Contador (Spa) Tinnkoff-Saxo at 39 secs
6. Steve Cummings (GBr) MTN-Qhubeka at 40 secs
7. Wouter Poels (Ned) Sky at 56 secs
8. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Ag2r at 59 secs
9. Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-GreenEdge at 1-09
10. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff-Saxo at 1-11

Stage reports: Stage one | Stage two | Stage three | Stage four | Stage six | Stage seven
Key info: TV guide | Start list | Route guide
Previous editions: 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012
Key riders: Alejandro Valverde | Vincenzo NibaliPeter Sagan | Greg Van Avermaet

The Tirreno-Adriatico route for 2017 features three uphill finishes that should make next year's race one of the hardest editions in a number of years.