Van Vleuten to debut her rainbow jersey at Giro dell’EmiliaWed 2 Oct 2019
Recently crowned road world champion Annemiek van Vleuten will make her debut in the rainbow jersey this weekend in Italy at the one-day race Giro dell’Emilia.
The 36-year-old stormed to an incredible solo victory on Saturday in Harrogate and will be back in action exactly one-week later, hoping to continue her winning form for Mitchelton-SCOTT in her first race as the road world champion.
The Australian outfit has never previously lined-up at Giro dell’Emilia and for 2019 they will make their debut in style, with a powerful team which also includes bronze medallist from the championships Amanda Spratt.
The squad will continue racing in Italy on Sunday at GP Bruno Berghelli, but without Van Vleuten, giving the rest of the team a good opportunity to take their chances in the race more suited to the sprinters.
Both races preluded the men's events and are fairly short, the Giro dell’Emilia is just 99kilometres long, with the first 90kilometres raced over flat roads before a tough final three-kilometre kick up to the finish line in Bologna, San Luca. With the steep and hard finish as used in this year's Giro d'Italia opening time trial stage, it should suit the team which boast talented climbers in Van Vleuten, Spratt and Clasica San Sebastian winner Lucy Kennedy.
The second race of the weekend, GP Bruno Beghelli is just 79kilometres and is raced over six-laps of a 13.3kilometre circuit with one main climb, the Zappolino, to tackle each lap.
Annemiek van Vleuten - World RR Champion
“It means a lot to me to race on Saturday at Emilia, I am really looking forward to racing in the rainbow stripes and I am super proud to wear the colours for Mitchelton-SCOTT and what a great way to end the season like this.
“The race is different from the men’s where they have a lot more elevation but we both finish on the same climb, San Luca. I know it and I also saw it in the Giro d’Italia. I think it suits me and it is a great atmosphere so I am super excited to race there.
“I had some celebrations but I don’t think it has ruined my legs and I trained again already because I still have some focus, so I am looking forward to going there and going for the win. Last year I finished on a low, I couldn’t enjoy my world time trial title after my injury, so it makes this one even more special and I am really looking forward to racing in the jersey already.
“The team is strong and Spratt is in incredible form and it will be nice to race with her again and then after we can enjoy it and celebrate all the results from the whole season with the whole team at a training camp."
Alejandro Gonzales - Sport Director
“Giro dell’Emilia is a really flat race except for the last kilometres where we finish on the top of the San Luca. It is a really hard and demanding finish that suits our riders well with Annemiek and her incredible form at the moment, also Amanda Spratt and Lucy Kennedy.
“Annemiek would like to show her rainbow jersey off for the first time, just one-week after the world championships and she will try and finish off the season on the top step.
“GP Bruno Beghelli is a totally different race, it is usually a sprint race, but with a climb each lap it can be open for some aggressive racing.”
Saturday 5th October: Giro dell’Emilia, 99km
Sunday 6th October: GP Bruno Beghelli, 79km
Photo courtesy of Sara Cavallini