A road race, a track gold, a birthday party: Elia Viviani and his mad day in Munich
Italian star storms to European track elimination title just five hours after sprinting for seventh in the road race.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
Turns out Elia Viviani wasn’t done when he sprinted to seventh in the European road championships Sunday.
Just five hours later, the Italian speedster was in the process of winning the champion’s white and blue jersey in the Munich track elimination race.
“For sure, a busy one. A long day!” Viviani said afterward.
Viviani took all his opportunities in the multi-disciplinary Euro championships Sunday.
As former European road race champion and reigning elimination race world champion, the 33-year-old wasn’t going to let an awkward bit of scheduling across the weeks-long event get in his way.
“It was a good road race but as Italians we are not happy with seventh place – we are coming from four titles consecutive so we are hoping for something more, at least a medal,” Viviani said.
“But for this elimination race tonight, maybe it was a crazy day, I really just wanted to show this jersey as much I can,” he continued, referring to his world rainbow jersey. “We were just thinking to do the road race and then we’d see.”
Busy day for Elia Viviani 🇮🇹 in #Munich2022:
⌚️15:09 – #EuroRoad22, Road Race: 7th
⌚️20:21 – #EuroTrack22, Elimination: 1st#BackToTheRoofs pic.twitter.com/Yxs3MTxo7o
— UEC_cycling (@UEC_cycling) August 14, 2022
Viviani is set to race through to the Paris Olympics with Ineos Grenadiers as he looks for a repeat of his track feats in Rio.
The Italian veteran’s time at the top of road sprinting is starting to run short, but his exploits in the velodrome continue to reap rewards.
Gallery: Elia Viviani’s Pinarello Dogma F
Winning the first elimination world title last year while also placing third in both the Olympic and world championship Omnium has seen Viviani put added emphasis on the boards as he rides toward future retirement.
“I recovered well [between races], I had a good massage between the road race and the track and I was pretty confident that the shape was there,” he said. “I worked all week on the track, and it’s a month until the worlds, so it’s time to do more track than road now.”
Track victory served to scrub the disappointment of missing road gold for the Italian national team.
Consecutive victories from Matteo Trentin, Viviani, Giacomo Nizzolo and then Sonny Colbrelli saw the Azzuri looking for a fifth straight title in Munich.
The Italian team took control in the final kilometers but lost ground when Belgium and then race winner Fabio Jakobsen unleashed the sprint.
“My legs were decent today so a lot of sprinters were faster today,” Viviani said of the road race. “We tried to do a perfect leadout, with 500 meters to go we emptied our legs …. seventh was not what we raced for but we look forward.”
Viviani still had one more task on his to-do list after he turned his road frown upside down in the Messe München velodrome.
“Tonight I will go to dinner with my road teammates, we have to celebrate Jacopo Guarnieri’s birthday,” Viviani said.