Nibali ends disappointing season with Il Lombardia win

COMO, Italy (AP) Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali ended a disappointing season by winning Il Lombardia in style on Sunday to claim his first Monument victory.

Nibali, who is one of the strongest riders on descents, pulled away at the top of the penultimate climb. The Astana cyclist finished the 245-kilometer (152-mile) race from Bergamo to Como 21 seconds ahead of Daniel Moreno of Spain and 32 ahead of Thibaut Pinot of France.

”What a fantastic day,” the 30-year-old Nibali said. ”I tried to attack twice on the climb, but I was too closely marked and I realized I would have to try in another way.

”My teammates were exceptional. It wasn’t easy but we didn’t give up all race.”

Moreno seemed close to catching Nibali on the final climb but the Italian’s superior descending skills again proved decisive.

Nibali, who has won all three Grand Tours, was thrown out of this year’s Spanish Vuelta for holding on to a team car and finished more than eight minutes behind winner Chris Froome in his attempt to defend his Tour de France title.