Former Australian champion Amanda Spratt rode herself into the front group in an action packed finale of the women’s Strade Bianche today, picking up 12th place for Team BikeExchange in what was the first women’s WorldTour race of the 2021 season.
As expected, the race blew to pieces on the final key gravel sectors and with 16km to go, an elite selection finally established itself. Attacks and counter attacks began to fly with Spratt the solo representative in the move for the Australian outfit, biding her timing, trying to following the key attacks.
The winning move eventually came shortly after, as Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (SD Works) and the Italian Champion Elisa Longo-Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) jumped away from the group and were able to hold on, to contest the victory in Siena, with Van den Broek-Blaak Blaak coming out on top.
On the final punishing pave slopes into Siena, the chasing group fragmented, with riders crossing the line one-by-one and Spratt taking a solid 12th place to begin her WorldTour campaign.
“It was a good race, we wanted to be in the front for the early gravel sectors and Moniek (Tenniglo) especially, did a great job of making sure that happened.
“It was quite aggressive after the long sector; we missed a move, but the girls got the front quickly and just maintained that gap and it all exploded on the climb where we thought it would.
“It was suffering to the max after that. I was in the front group and just tried to play it smart all the way into the final as we had four riders from SD Works in there.
“I probably made a few mistakes, so there’s a few things to learn but I am satisfied with the day and I’ll be back next year, for more suffering.”
2021 Women’s Strade Bianche Results:
- Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (SD Works) 3:54:40
- Elisa Longi Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) 0:07
- Anna van der Breggen (SD Works) 0:09
12. Amanda Spratt (Team BikeExchange) 0:46
Photo courtesy of Getty Images