Emma Johansson claims impressive victory in Durango-Durango Emakumeen SariaTue 9 Jun 2015
Emma Johansson has sprinted to an impressive victory in Durango-Durango Emakumeen Saria. The Swedish ORICA-AIS rider claimed her first win this season in Spain, leaving Rabo-Liv’s Kasia Niewiadoma behind her.
The 110 kilometres long circuit race knows a difficult and demanding parcourse with many climbs. The race started off fast, and remained so throughout the day. The ORICA-AIS ladies rode strongly in the front to control the race, and to support Johansson as well as possible.
Johansson was extremely pleased to obtain her first victory this season: “I’m very, very happy with this win! I was feeling great today and I’ve been waiting for this victory, it’s my first this season."
“I’ve had a bit of a rough spring time, and I think it’s the same for the whole team, though we worked really hard. I think we made it pretty clear last weekend that we’re back on track, where we belong. The victory today just shows that we have a strong enough team to perform well for the rest of the season.
“The girls have really been working so well and everything is going our way now. I’m just really happy! This is the place where I signed my first contract as a rider, ten years ago. It’s just really special coming back here, and then to finally win this race as well is amazing. I’m really happy and I really appreciate the girls backing me up so well: racing so hard, and putting me in a position where I can finish it off in a good way.
“I’m really looking forward to the start of Euskal Emakumeen Bira tomorrow. A lot of my friends live here so it’s a bit of a home coming feeling. You never really know what you can expect here, and it’s going to be a pretty tough few days of racing, but with the way the team is going right now, we’re definitely very motivated.”
Sports director Gene Bates: “This victory is excellent, we’re feeling really good! It was quite a small field, but a really strong one. We knew it was going to be a tough race, but we started with a strong team plan and they really executed that perfectly."
“On the first of the final two climbs, we still had five out of our six riders in the front group. Emma, Valentina Scandolara and Amanda Spratt got away on a descent with some other riders, which was a brilliant piece of tactical riding. Towards the end, Emma was strong enough to ride away on the final climb and proved to be the strongest in the sprint.
“This win is motivating for the whole week. It’s the first really hard climbs race of the year, and after the way things worked out today, the girls are pretty confident for the rest of the week.”