"The most successful season of my career"
Taking a close look
Six wins, thirteen podiums, 28 top 10 results. Thats the current results in 2023 of our Italian sprinter Filippo Fortin. Travelling to Bulgaria at the end of August paid off: he was able to take three more stage victories and an overall classification win. Im Anschluss an die beiden Rundfahrten Tour of Bulgaria und In the Footsteps of the Romans lag Filippo Fortin auf Platz eins der italienischen Rennprofis auf Pro Cycling Stats – vor Filippo Ganna und Giulio Ciccone. “Currently Filippo Ganna has overtaken me again with another win” – but Fortin is also proud of 18th place in the worldwide PCS Rankings by most wins.
“I am super proud to have achieved this with this team, with these teammates. I have to give a very big GRAZIE to everyone.”
Maloja Pushbikers Recap
1 I Tour of Bulgaria
The Tour of Bulgaria started with a 1km prologue in the capital Sofia, on cobblestones and partly in the rain. Filippo Fortin started strong, finished second and receiving the sprint jersey. Ein motivierender Beginn für die Pushbikers, die sich für Tag zwei, der in zwei Teiletappen ausgetragen wurde, viel vorgenommen hatten. The first part over 70 km was fast. The peloton split into two parts in the last 15 km. All Pushbikers were in the front part of the peloton and could therefore position their captain Filippo well: The stage ended with a victory for Pippo and thus also the yellow jersey. “We were so happy that we all joined in a little dance afterwards at the team bus,” reveals Philip Weber.
The Tour of Bulgaria started with a 1km prologue in the capital Sofia, on cobblestones and partly in the rain. Filippo Fortin started strong, finished second and receiving the sprint jersey. A motivating start for the Pushbikers, who had a lot planned for day two, which was held in two partial stages. The first part over 70 km was fast. The peloton split into two parts in the last 15 km. All Pushbikers were in the front part of the peloton and could therefore position their captain Filippo well: The stage ended with a victory for Pippo and thus also the yellow jersey.
In part two of the first stage with just under 89 kilometres, Filippo, Liam, Fabian and Felix supported Patrick in the best possible way. With about 20 kilometres to go, Patrick had to be well positioned for a 15 km uphill section, which they managed well. Patrick came over the mountain with the leading group, but had to let go in the downhill to the finish and finished 19th in the end.
On the third, mountainous stage over 108 kilometres, there was a decisive mountain classification for the Pushbikers 20 km before the finish. This time Liam Bertazzo attacked on the downhill, but could not catch up with the two front riders and finished in 3rd place, adding another podium finish for the Pushbikers. The following day it was Fabian Steininger who narrowly missed the podium, finishing 4th in the third stage. Earlier, the team had tried to decimate the peloton with the wind edge, putting Filippo in a promising position for the bunch sprint. A defect at only 600 metres before the finish line prevented an even better result. And also in the flat fourth stage over 114 kilometres Fortin was again part of the bunch sprint, but got involved in an unfortunate crash with several other riders about 300 metres before the finish. “It’s always easy to say afterwards, but I think there could have been a better outcome for us,” Fortin said, “my position and my legs were good.”
On the final day of the race it was Fabian Steininger who crashed in the bunch sprint shortly before the finish, so that the race tactics had to be changed quickly to Filippo. He achieved another top 10 finish for the Maloja Pushbikers with 6th place. Patrick Reißig finished 20th in the overall classification of the Tour of Bulgaria and showed again how well he has developed in this road season.
Maloja Pushbikers Recap
2 I In the Footsteps of the Romans
After a long journey and a one-day break Fabian, Liam, Patrick, Philip and Filippo started at the UCI 2.2 Tour In the Footsteps of the Romans. With the support of his team, captain Filippo Fortin was able to secure both stages and thus also the overall victory of the two-day tour over almost 270 kilometres.
“We are very happy with our output. Besides Pippo’s great performance, it was the first ever Tour victory for us as a team,” said a happy Gregor Pavlic. On the final stage, a leading group of 3 men broke away early on. The Pushbikers did some follow-up work and were able to catch up with the leading group 10 km before the finish. Liam and Felix were in the peloton alongside Pippo, preparing for the sprint. Six kilometres before the finish line Pippo had a defect and received the front wheel from Liam while Felix waited for him to bring him back to the peloton. Three km before the finish, a mass crash happened two positions in front of the Pushbikers captain Filippo. He managed to avoid and won in a sprint ahead of the Slovak Lukas Kubis (Dukla Banska) and the Hungarian Adam Karl (Epronex).
In the overall classification Filippo Fortin had a lead of 14 seconds over the Polish Patryk Stosz (Voster ATS) and Lukas Kubis at the end. Patrick Reissig finished the second stage in 10th place and improved to 13th overall and 5th in the mountain classification.