Mitchelton-SCOTT women hungry for more success in the mid-week classic, Dwars door Vlaanderen

Mon 26 Mar 2018

Mitchelton-SCOTT women continue their busy classics period in Belgium with the mid-week race Dwars door Vlaanderen.

After successful performances last week with a WorldTour win in Driedaagse de Panne followed by a second place in Gent-Wevelgem, the team are hoping for another victory in the 117kilometres one-day race, as part of their build up towards an early season target race on Sunday, Tour of Flanders.

The race

The 2018 edition of the women’s race takes on a different parcours with two big climbs, the Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg, missing from the route this year. Instead the seventh edition of the event covers 117kilometres and includes five climbs, starting with the Kluisberg after 77kilometres of racing and finishing with the Nokereberg, which comes just nine kilometres from the finish. 

The team

Jenelle Crooks - (AUS 23) 

Jolien D´Hoore - (BEL 27)

Gracie Elvin - (AUS 29)

Lucy Kennedy - (AUS 29)

Annemiek van Vleuten - (NED 35)

Sarah Roy - (AUS 32) 

Martin Vestby - Sport Director

"The past years it has been sprint finishes, so there is quite a big chance it will be a sprint again and of course Jolien is our main sprinter, but I think with the team we have, we have a lot of options to play."

"We will try to race aggressively and there are many places were you can get in a breakaway or split the bunch. There's differnt small climbs, narrow roads, cobble section five kilometres from the finish."

"We have Lucy coming in for her first race here in Belgium, and we have Annemiek in her second race after her altitude camp. Gracie has been racing really well and is in really good form, she is a rider that will be beneficial to have in a breakaway and she can sprint from a group. So we have good options to work with."

"For the Flanders girls this will be the last big thing that they do as part of their preperation for Flanders." 

Gracie Elvin
"I wasn’t rostered to start Dwars door Vlaanderen because we thought it might be too close to Flanders, but I’ve been racing really well lately and I was keen to get the chance for another cobbled race. I was sad to be missing it, so now I am really happy to try and go one better from last year."
"Because it is the last race before Flanders it will be interesting as some riders will be using it as a good hit-out, while others will want an easier race, and some top riders won’t be starting at all."
"For our team it is a great opportunity to go for the win and share the load across all riders. We won’t have a clear leader and will just enjoy a typical Belgian cobble classic without the pressures we will have on Sunday! 

Previously in Dwars door Vlaanderen

Last year, in the teams first appearance in the race, Elvin sprinted to a superb second place in a fast and windy race.

Wednesday, 28 March: Tielt to Waregem, 117km 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images