ORICA-SCOTT women approach Gent-Wevelgem with confidence

Thu 23 Mar 2017

After a string of positive results ORICA-SCOTT go into Sunday's Women’s WorldTour race at Gent-Wevelgem with a strong team in great shape and showing good form.

With a second place from Australian Gracie Elvin at yesterday's Dwars door Vlaanderen and a strong ride from Annemiek van Vleuten, the Australian squad can be pleased with their start to the Spring Classics campaign.

“We have a very strong team for Sunday's race,” said sport director Gene Bates. “Over the course of these next ten days, we will be using our strength in depth and alternating our line up to give the riders both rest and recovery and also some good racing.”

“Obviously given the results of the past weeks and the way the girls have been racing, it is clear that the team is in great shape, unfortunately that alone doesn’t deliver a good result.”

Australian time trial and road race champion Katrin Garfoot returns to the team alongside 2017 Santos Tour Down Under winner Amanda Spratt, giving the squad excellent options to accompany the in-form Elvin and van Vleuten.

“We will go into the race with a very clear plan of what we want to achieve as a group,” continued Bates. “All the while knowing that we have a good range of riders that have different strengths.”

“The girls are excited to race and when you have good form and an excited group racing, it generally allows great things to happen.”

The team is completed by 23-year-old Jessica Allen and fast finishing Australian Sarah Roy, rounding out a strong and versatile line up for the fourth WorldTour event of the season.

Sunday marks the sixth edition of the race and covers almost 150kilometres across the Flemish hills and includes the historic Kemmelberg and Monteberg climbs and the short but brutally steep Baneberg.

With ramps reaching 22% in places the Baneberg comes before the finish with the final 40kilometres of racing covering flat roads.

ORICA-SCOTT at Gent-Wevelgem (Sunday 26th March):

Jessica Allen (AUS, 23)

Gracie Elvin (AUS, 28)

Katrin Garfoot (AUS, 35)

Sarah Roy (AUS, 31)

Amanda Spratt (AUS, 29)

Annemiek van Vleuten (NED, 34)

Photos courtesy of ©