So that’s it! The best race of the year is over, it’s all downhill from here to the end of the season! Just kidding… but Strade Bianche is one of the season highlights. Come rain or shine it delivers every year, without fail. If the UCI announced they were overhauling the UCI Women’s WorldTour and there would now be a Strade Bianche once a month I’d be totally ok with that!
This morning was all about what to wear both for me and the cameras. It’d be cold at the start but soon warm up and then the cameras: To put the rain covers on, to protect them from the dust or not. I went with the less is more options for both. Dispatched my hoodie in the Bigla camper at the start (it’ll have to stay there to Drenthe now) and no covers on the cameras. Was a good decision on both counts as it was even pretty nice temperatures at the start and the cameras didn’t get (too much) dust inside them (hate using the cameras with covers on!).
Now for a few days to relax before heading up to Holland for Ronde van Drenthe and the all new VAMberg climb!
Hannah Ludwig prepares for her first Strade Bianche
Fans head to the start line. I was desperate for some riders to come along this stretch of road through the shadows but it wasn’t happening.
Trek Segafredo prepare for Strade Bianche
The chase into sector two
Team Sunweb lead the chase over the early sectors
Karol-Ann Canuel on sector two
Leah Kirchmann and her Team Sunweb teammates still bossing the front
I’m going to be sneezing gravel dust for weeks!
Speeding through the dust
Janneke Ensing leads up sector five
Elena Cecchini battles to the top of the fifth sector
How nice would this spot be if they got rid of the pylon?
Leah Kirchmann through the dust
Alison Jackson emerges through a cloud of gravel dust
Liane Lippert takes a tumble
Audrey Cordon-Ragot in the escape
The leaders approach
Janneke Ensing leads (again!)
Annemiek van Vleuten makes her move
Kasia Niewiadoma turns herself inside out trying to close the gap
Annemiek van Vleuten wins solo
Kasia Niewiadoma recovers from the effort
Ruth Winder reflects on a hard day
Tiffany Cromwell arrives in Piazza del Campo
Annemiek van Vleuten celebrates