Being There: Breakfast at Milano-Sanremo:

On a hazy morning in the centro of Milano in front of the Castello Sforzesco, 224 WorldTour racers and their camp followers gathered for the 298km race called La Classicissima. the first BIG race of the 2012 season. The big question on the lips of the swarming tifosi was if World Champion Mark Cavendish could become the first rider to win Milano-Sanremo with the Rainbow jersey in 29 years, as Giuseppe Sarroni did in 1983.

Since time immemorial, Road Bike Action starts the classic Milano-Sanremo at Cafe Stella with a classic Italian “breakfast”; cappuccino con brioche (vuoto).

Farnese Vini-Selle Italia leader Filippo Pozatto had a special MCipollini RB 1000 bike with an integrated seatpost and Shimano Di2 drivetrain, Elite cages, a 3T stem and a race number mounted with (really?!) electrical tape.

Selle Italia made Pozatto a special Monolink version of their Flite saddle for his new bike


The decals say URSUS but the wheels are custom with Corima rims and DT Hubs

Rinaldo Nocentini’s AG2R Kuota KOM team bike. Equipped with Selle San Marco saddle, Elite cages, Look pedals, old-school SRAM Red and Reynolds 46 wheels clad with Michelin Service Course tubulars with distinctive blue sidewalls.

Nocentini’s Kuota cockpit features Deda Elementi’s Zero 100 bar & stem mounted with a Sigma computer.

Tommeke Boonen’s Specialized Venge McLaren was surrounded by curious tifosi but thanks to Specialized’s Chris D’Aluisio, Road Bike Action managed to get some unhampered shots of the Omega Pharma-Quick Step rig. Tommeke has new SRAM Red groupset (with a Specialized FACT carbon crank), Quarq power meter and mixed Zip wheels; 808 rear and 404 front equipped with Specialized’s new tubular tires.

Formerly know as Bill Clinton’s FRench double double, Omega Pharma-Quick Step boss Patrick Lefevre has aged better than the ex-POTUS. Although Lefevre tried to convince Road Bike Action the ladies were his harem, we found out later they were guests from team sponsor Omega Pharma.

Juan Pablo Suarez Suarez of the Colombia-Coldeportes outfit tackled his first Milano-Sanremo on this Bianchi Sempre, the new race bike from Treviglio, with NanoTech carbon technology and a BB30 bottom bracket. A Fizik Alliante saddle and Elite cages mix with some old-school SRAM Red and FSA componentsm all which rolls on Vision’s new carbon wheels.

Ernesto Colnago meets up with one of his favorite “corridore”, Erik Zabel, four time winner at  Milano-Sanremo who is sprint coach with Katusha Team.

Colnago was visiting his two sponsored teams, Colnago-CSF and US outfit Team Type 1-Sanofi at Milano-Sanremo. Leading the squad was Daniele Colli, who came back last season from a cancerous tumor on his knee. Colli’s Colnago M10 is equipped with a Shimano Dura Ace Di2 groupset, Shimano wheels and Pro stem & seatpost with a Selle Italia Flite saddle.

Look for more from pit row at Milano-Sanremo soon.

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