Spaniard from Movistar Team resists into main field in rainy, windy race, Deignan (TFS, 1st), Banks (PKA, 2nd) beat a bunch affected by numerous crashes and incidents.
/ Today’s route
It was a short, 101km race -sharing roads with the men’s Bretagne Classic, which was usually held a day later- and with a very different final circuit. The Côte du Lezot (1.4km, 3.9%) was kept, while two other hills were new: Lann Payot (1.3km, 2.6%) and Pont-Neuf (1.5km, 4.2%), the latter crested just 2km from every passage through the finish.
/ Weather report
After a full month with sun and warm temperatures, the weather turned into a more classics-like scenario in Brittany. No more than 19ºC in this French matinée, with showers during the whole race and strong southerly winds, around 9m/s.
/ Keys to the race
- Down to five riders due to the last-minute absence of Gloria Rodríguez and Paula Patiño’s replacement -due to technical problems- for Katrine Aalerud, who was with her Norwegian national team for the European Champs, the Movistar Team took to the front of the bunch before the final circuit, looking to safeguard their chances. The Blues’ attention did not prevent them, however, from a crash involving both Aalerud and Barbara Guarischi, which split the peloton in three with 35km to go.
- Just before that incident, a duo would undexpectedly attack to contest the victory, with Lizzy Banks (PKA, 2nd) and eventual winner Lizzie Deignan ahead of the bunch during the final three laps. The bunch weren’t able to bring them back and neither was a strong, ten-woman pursuit, led by Annemiek van Vleuten (MTS), which got as close as 25″ from them, yet lacked cooperation and was caught.
- The peloton, 1’13” behind the two leaders over the line, still contained Aude Biannic and Alicia González, who took advantage from her final sprint to take a fine 9th spot. Chiara Consonni (VAL) completed the podium in Brittany.
/ Upcoming goals
Some of the Movistar Team present today in the GP Plouay will be contesting next Thursday’s European Champs’ road race. The rest will travel to Nice to ride La Course, another round of the UCI Women’s WorldTour, on Sunday 29th.
Cover picture (c): Velofocus