“It is up to Every Rider to Win as Best He Can"
Saturday March 18, 1978 fine weather with warm temperature greeted 225 riders at the start line along the famous Castello Sforzesco Cathedral in Milan.
A breakaway of eleven riders escaped under the impetuous of Dirk Baert only minutes in the race. The group opened a ten minute lead before the peloton started a steady chase along the Ligurian coast. Over the Capo Berta with 30 kms to go the bunch finally caught the remainder of a shattered breakaway.
The first crucial move of the race came from Alessio Antonini. The little known Italian launched a furious attack that was quickly joined by young and promising Italian Giuseppe Saronni, Roger De Vlaeminck and finally Peugeot's Yves Hezard. The four leaders steadfastly held a slim 15 second lead for what seemed like an eternity. Over the Poggio Yves Hezard nearly crashed on the descent and lost contact with the group. The young Saronni lead-out the sprint from just less than 300 meters with De Vlaeminck and Antonini glued to him wheel. Antonini was the next to jump, but he was no match for the Belgian sprinter. Roger De Vlaeminck (Team Sanson-Campagnolo) took his second victory in the Milan-San Remo.
SPECIAL NOTE: After the race an unhappy Giuseppe Saronni expressed his belief that De Vlaeminck had not worked hard enough in the breakaway. De Vlaeminck responded "every race has to be won and it is up to every rider to win as best he can".
M-SR March 18, 1978
Roger DE VLAEMINCK (Bel) 6h47'35"
Giuseppe Saronni (Ita)
Alessio Antonini (Ita)
Average Speed: 42.396 km/h
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