Siutsou keeps Dekker in second

Konstantin Siutsou of Belarus has won the men's under-23 world road title, finishing alone ahead of

Konstantin Siutsou of Belarus has won the men’s under-23 world road title, finishing alone ahead of

PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE For the second time this week, Holland’s rising star Thomas Dekker has been pushed into second place in a world championship by a rider from eastern Europe. On Monday, it was Slovenian Janez Brazkovic who denied Dekker a widely expected world time trial title, while today’s road race has been won by Konstantin Siutsou of Belarus, with Dekker taking a sprint for second ahead of Denmark’s Mads Christensen. While Dekker, who has recently been promoted to the pro Rabobank squad after a successful period with their under-23 affiliate, may reflect on opportunities missed, the Italians will be starting to wonder if they are going to miss out completely on a title in Verona. With a silver and bronze medal their haul so far, the Italians must have thought that a gold was on the cards when three home riders got into a decisive break of 13 with 50 kilometres remaining. But they somehow ended up with nothing. Three laps from the end Italy’s Domenico Pozzovivo and Siutsou attacked on the Torricelle climb. The Italians policed all of the attacks that came from the chase group behind the two leaders on the penultimate lap, but their apparent faith in Pozzovivo was shattered when he could not follow an attack by Siutsou the final time up the Torricelle. As Siutsou pounded clear to victory, Pozzovivo ran out of puff and fell back into the chase group behind, which by this point consisted of just Dekker and Christensen. Both of these riders were visibly stronger than the Italian, and Pozzovivo could not respond when the Dane attacked for second place in the final few hundred metres. Dekker did, however, and was able to clinch his second silver of the week. 1 Konstantsin Siutsou (Belarus) 177km in 4.33.32 (38.83kph) 2 Thomas Dekker (Holland) 1.01 3 Mads Christensen (Denmark) 1.02 4 Domenico Pozzovivo (Italy) 1.09 5 Vincenzo Nibali (Italy) 1.30 6 Matti Breschel (Denmark) 1.38 7 Giovanni Visconti (Italy) 8 Marc De Maar (Holland) 9 Andreas Dietziker (Switzerland) 1.50 10 Nic Ingels (Belgium) 1.51