Balsmo surprised everyone, also because the enemy was led by an Italian who was considered the favorite of the rainbow jersey: Elisa Longo Borghini. “After the last corner, Elisa yelled at me: Go for it, don’t look back,” said Balsamu, completely surprised, right after she finished. ‘Not understand. Of course the dream has come true after such a long season. I can ride in this shirt all year round. unbelievable.’
In fact, the 34-year-old Voss was well positioned in the race to win her fourth world title on the road. Polish Katarzyna Niewiadoma started the sprint in favor of Vos and Balsamo, but the streak was too far for her. Then continue to balsmo, perfect for Voss jumping from above. But no matter what the Dutch tried in the last 100 metres, she lacked the power to put her wheel in front of the Balsamo. “It was a tough race,” Voss said.
With her silver medal, she definitely didn’t pay her team for work. With 100km left, on the first twenty short but steep climbs, the World Cup started off well. It was important for all riders to sit as front as possible from that moment on, certainly as long as the peloton is still big. With the sometimes narrow, cobbled roads climbing steeply, it was inevitable that there would be delays due to the crowds, so that riders who were riding in the rear stopped, had to get off their bikes and had to wait until the road was clear.
This was the 63rd time the Women’s World Road Championships has been held. The road between Antwerp and Leuven was considered eclectic beforehand because of all those bad slopes, but even just before the end it turned out not so bad, because there were still over twenty women in the final who could have taken the world. nickname. The weather was not bad either: about 22 degrees in the sun, dry and little wind.
The Netherlands, who were allowed to take on eight women instead of the usual seven – defender Anna van der Bregen, a starting place to her name – started the race as the favorite. This means that the weight of the race was placed entirely on the shoulders of the Dutch. From the ninth ramp, the Dutch riders took on this responsibility and began to lighten the load with one attack after another.
Van der Bregen is out of shape
Van der Bregen was the first victim of this. She ended up in a second set with a quick backlog. Her turn was more than 36 km from the end, just as she announced. She is not in great shape and especially wanted to enjoy the last game of her successful career.
Previously, it also looked like Demi Fullering had to draw a line with her title ambitions. The 24-year-old contestant won Liège-Bastogne-Liège this year, making the World Cup track a perfect fit for her. However, she had to get off the bike three times in a row due to a physical failure. The World Cup seemed to end by 66 kilometers, but she crossed the line in seventh place in Leuven.
With no fewer than seven front group riders in the final, the World Cup looked like NK with the guest riders. Every Dutchman tried to attack, especially Lucina Brand, Animek van Vleuten, Chantal van den Broek-Black and Elaine van Dijk. The latter, who became the world Trials champion on Monday, tried over the curb and risked dismissal.
Great leadership group
Dutch women weren’t the only ones who picked up their pace. Respectively, riders from New Zealand, France, the United States and Spain risked, and Spain’s Mavi Garcia came first. But in the last kilometres, it became clear that the large leading group would storm the entire finish line.
Holland has already taken this into account in the person of Marianne Voss. Her ability to put everyone on the sprint after a tough race gave her a lot in the second part of her career and had the chance to crown her absolute grand prix eight years after her last World Cup title on the road. Instead, she took home the sixth silver medal at the World Cup.
This led to the tears of Fullering, who felt guilty for not being able to play an important role in attracting the sprint enemy in Voss’ favour. “But in the end I couldn’t do more with all my efforts to come back.” Van den Broek-Black, who was a former contender as a contender, was also affected by losing the World Cup title. According to her, the Dutch participants did not drive the car to each other, but to themselves. “We didn’t race as a team.”
Foss disagreed. “I don’t think we were driving like loose sand,” she said, her eyes wet. “We didn’t want to let anything pass, so you constantly see orange from the front, but we agreed on that beforehand.”
Van Vleuten said he was ashamed of Voss. I gave her a lot. We should have been better at that enemy. But I didn’t see any team spirit racing with us. Van Dijk in turn knows that losing the title, after four consecutive Dutch champions, means her team has waited too long to make the race difficult.
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