Fourth and eighth for Van Vleuten and Spratt on a hard stage of the Giro RosaFri 7 Jul 2017
Today’s stage eight of the Giro Rosa was a lengthy 141kilometre hilly and hot stage which saw the breakaway survive once again to the finish line.
With no major time gaps between the overall contenders despite the stage’s difficult terrain, the general classification remains mostly unchanged with ORICA-SCOTT in third and sixth place with Annemiek van Vleuten and Amanda Spratt respectively.
During the final of 30kilometres of the stage the situation at the head of the race continuously changed with different riders leading ahead of the bunch.
Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb) was the day’s eventual winner, attacking her breakaway companion in the final kilometre to take a solo victory.
“It was really hard today, I think just the build up of stages and with the heat,” explained sport director Gene Bates. “We saw a big split on the first climb which reduced the peloton down to about 20riders.”
“We planned to be really aggressive on the third climb to try and get away and steal some time but Anna van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans) and Elisa Longo-Borghini (Wiggle-High5) were too strong and were able to withstand all the attacks that van Vleuten and Spratt did.
“Hats off to the girls, they really threw everything they had at it, but the others riders were able to hang in there.
“We will see how tomorrow goes and really lay it all on the line on the last stage. We have nothing to lose now.”
How it happened:
The eighth day was another lengthy stage, 141kilometres in length and with hot temperatures once again it was a challening day out for all riders.
The first hour of racing saw a rapid speed in the bunch of 42.9kilometres per hour with no breakaway able to establish.
After 60kilometre an uncategorised climb provided the first real opportunity for the peloton to split with a group of 33riders leading the way, followed by a chase group of around 20.
On the technical descent Ana Sanesteban (Ale Cipollini) broke away and led the race solo hovering 55seconds ahead. This spurred on the chasing peloton as riders began to bridge across with the situation constantly changing.
Eventually coming into the final 10kilometres two riders led the race followed with the peloton a further two minutes behind.
Brand crossed the line first, and behind a small group of chasers, including all the GC favourites finished one minute and 33seconds a drift.
The overall classification remains the same after today's stage with ORICA-SCOTT in third and sixth position with two day's remaining.
Giro Rosa stage 8 result:
1. Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb) 3:46
2. Tatiana Riabchenko (Lensworld-Kuota) +0:12
3. Megan Guarnier (Boels-Dolmans) +1:33
4. Annemiek van Vleuten (ORICA-SCOTT) +1:33
General classification after stage 8:
1. Anna van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans)
2. Elisa Longo-Borghini (Wiggle-High5) +1:03
3. Annemiek van Vleuten (ORICA-SCOTT) +1:39
Photos courtesy of ©TDWsport.com