Annemiek van Vleuten to co-lead Mitchelton-Scott at Strade Bianche
Mar 09 2019 03:41 am CET

Annemiek van Vleuten to co-lead Mitchelton-Scott at Strade Bianche
Annemiek van Vleuten to co-lead Mitchelton-Scott at Strade Bianche
Annemiek van Vleuten by Mitchelton-Scott

Annemiek van Vleuten will be one of the leaders of Mitchelton-Scott in Strade Bianche. The Dutch rider will captain the team along with Amanda Spratt and Lucy Kennedy.

The rider came back to competition at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad after a long recovery of a knee fracture she suffered at the 2019 World Championships. That race served as a shape test for Van Vleuten, which she showed by finishing just outside the podium.

"Strade Bianche is one of my favourite races," said the rider in her blog. "That also provides extra motivation. I didn't expect to have the level to be able to finish on the podium, but last Saturday gave me confidence.

"I'm not quite at the level that I would have liked to win this race, but I think I can get pretty far. The focus is there. It is a very fair course, so we will see how far I can go."

The weather forecast for the 2019 edition of the race is good, which makes it different from last year's where it was wet and the day before was snowy, but this doesn't make it any easier and several things will have to be kept into consideration. "In the last thirty kilometres there are three gravel sectors, all going uphill," Van Vleuten explained. "That is where the final will really break out and positioning will be very important.

"You also have to be lucky in this course that you don't end up behind. That is why positioning is also important because if you are in the front, you don't have much trouble. But of course, you can even get a flat tire at the wrong time."

The time trial World Champion is really looking forward to the final of the race. "In the last kilometre it goes really steep in Siena," she commented. "The finish on the Piazza del Campo is really beautiful, there are few nicer places to come solo than there. I am going to do everything to be there.

"With the team, we have very nice cards to play. I am really looking forward to this very beautiful course. Before my injury, I had this race as one of those in which I really wanted to perform. Very good is not possible, but I am certainly good. I expect to be able to arrive to the end."

Mitchelton-Scott's complete line-up for Strade Bianche (9th of March):

Jessica Allen
Grace Brown
Lucy Kennedy
Amanda Spratt
Annemiek van Vleuten
Georgia Williams



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