Petrucci attaching number one to his bicycle frame.

Thursday 19 March 1953 - Loretto Petrucci, riding for the Bianchi-Pirelli team along with Fausto Coppi and Raphael Geminiani, won the 44^ edition of Milano-Sanremo.

He finished in record speed beating that of Coppi set in 1949. For the first time in the history of the race the course was covered at over 40 km an hour average. It was also the first time "La Classicissma" had been completed in less than seven hours!

Petrucci, pictured above, had also won the previous year. He is seen here before the start attaching number one to his bicycle frame.

L'Orologio Della Corsa
0830 - 215 participants leave Milan with 282km ahead of them. The race is started by the President of the U.V.I Signor Rodoni.

There is an early escape by the Belgian Henri Van Kerckhove. He does not stay away long and is caught at Binasco. Van Kerckhove eventually finishes in 110th place over 52 minutes down.

0851 - Van Kerckhove's return to the gruppo is the cue for the Swiss champion Hugo Koblet to attack along with seven companions. Koblet does most of the work at the head of the gruppetto. The main contenders do not react and the escapers gain a lead of 2' 46".

0940 - The chase to bring the escape group back begins.

1145 - At Rossiglione, after a break lasting around 100 km, the escape group containing Koblet is caught and the field is together as they approach the Turchino.

The Swiss rider Koblet leads the second attack of the day on the Lombardy Plain.
  The Swiss rider Hugo Koblet leads the second attack of the day on the Lombard Plain.
1200 - The climb of the famous Passo del Turchino has begun. At the summit De Santi takes the prime ahead of Buratti in a close contest.
De Santi takes the prime ahead of Buratti
Left - De Santi takes the prime from Buratti and right - the main field arrives at the summit
1230 - At Arenzano they are all together. The race enters the decisive phase.

1247 - A group of thirty men pass through Varazze.

1321 - The group is still together in spite of the continuous skirmishes that developed between Savona and Spotorno.

1350 - There is an isolated attempt by the French rider Roger Walkowiak and he escapes going through Finale Ligure. His countryman Georges Decaux chases first, followed by the Italian Giuseppe Minardi. The only riders who could follow were Valère Ollivier (Bel), Germain Deryijcke (Bel), Jean Robic (Fra), Loretto Petrucci (Ita), Nello Lauredi (Fra) and Giovanni Roma (Ita). They were soon joined by Nino Defilippis (Ita), Raoul Remy (Fra), Raymond Impanis (Bel) and Mario Gervasoni (Ita). Over the Capo Mele and Capo Cervo riders begin to drop off.
Minardi at the front followed by Petrucci   Petrucci on the Capo Mele
1440 - At the summit of the final climb, the Capo Berta, the lead group is down to five. They go over in the following order - the Belgians Deryijcke and Impanis followed by the Italian riders Minardi, Defilippis and Petrucci. They would be joined by Ollivier as they pass through Arma di Taggia.
Above - On the Capo Berta cheered on by many spectators - Minardi still on the front followed by Petrucci and Derijcke.
1515 - At the finish Loretto Petrucci makes it two wins in a row as he crosses the finishing line ahead of Minardi and Ollivier.

Loretto Petrucci in 2011
Loretto Petrucci in 2011 - Image ©


1. Loretto PETRUCCI (Ita) in 6h 59' 20"
2. Giuseppe Minardi (Ita)
3. Valère Ollivier (Bel)
4. Germain Deryijcke (Bel)
5. Nino Defilippis (Ita)
6. Raymond Impanis (Bel)
7. Jean Robic (Fra) à 21"
8. Roger Walkowiack (Fra)
9. Fausto Coppi (Ita) à 1'05"
10. Ferdi Kubler (Sui) à 1'09"
Average speed - 40.349 km/h
Complete Result >>
All photographs © La Gazzetta dello Sport

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