The Women's Road Racing Thread 2021

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Libertine will be happy to learn that they did indeed start and finish on the Schleizer Dreieck race track today.
Brand lost at least a second on opening her rain jacket and celebrating, but it did look good.
Anna Henderson crashed and lost her GC chance.

 
Kopecky takes the win in front of Brand and Lippert, so there might be a new woman in the yellow jersey tomorrow.
And Brand will be in yellow.



Standings after 4 of 6 stages
 
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Damnit Liane, I needed you to get some of those bonuses. This was your day! (I've gone for Lippert to come 2nd in the prediction game, but I kinda actually want her to win)

Lucinda, good work, it is appreciated.

Annoyingly, I made a bit of a mess of my prediction game picking no SD Worx riders, however the SD Worx rider I had had in mind if I had included one was Amy Pieters, and so I may well rue that omission...

I really thought the Hankaberg would be too much for Lotte, I'm really impressed. She's fairly durable for a sprinter, but I thought this would be one where she would be a favourite if they went over the Hankaberg and finished in the village, rather than finishing atop the hill. You know, a bit like Óscar Freire in Amstel Gold year after year. If they put the finish where it was from 2013 onwards when he was doing that, rather than at the summit of the Cauberg, he'd have won, like, every year. If Lotte's now punching up climbs like this and still having the power to sprint at the summit of them, then practically the entire calendar will be within her grasp at this stage.
 
Damnit Liane, I needed you to get some of those bonuses. This was your day! (I've gone for Lippert to come 2nd in the prediction game, but I kinda actually want her to win)

Lucinda, good work, it is appreciated.

Annoyingly, I made a bit of a mess of my prediction game picking no SD Worx riders, however the SD Worx rider I had had in mind if I had included one was Amy Pieters, and so I may well rue that omission...

I really thought the Hankaberg would be too much for Lotte, I'm really impressed. She's fairly durable for a sprinter, but I thought this would be one where she would be a favourite if they went over the Hankaberg and finished in the village, rather than finishing atop the hill. You know, a bit like Óscar Freire in Amstel Gold year after year. If they put the finish where it was from 2013 onwards when he was doing that, rather than at the summit of the Cauberg, he'd have won, like, every year. If Lotte's now punching up climbs like this and still having the power to sprint at the summit of them, then practically the entire calendar will be within her grasp at this stage.
I did consider picking Kopecky, but I wasn't sure about her current form, and whether she would have good enough support from the national team or not, but she in clearly in great condition. Shame on me for having doubted her.



Highlights at 19:00 https://www.mdr.de/video/livestreams/mdr-plus/eventlivestreamdreiww-964.html
 
Despite Liane not winning it on Hankaberg, it sure is nice to see her come back to good shape after her spell of illness just before the Ardennes she had targeted.
Especially as to be honest the Women's Tour looks like being a 2018-like bore, rather than something she can get revenge on after collapsing in the leader's jersey two years ago. She'd be fine on a climb like Epynt now but it was just a step too far two years ago. Limits the races that a rider like Lippert can really take advantage of having missed the Ardennes and the Spanish mini-season. I guess it will depend on Il Giro and maybe the Limburg stages in the BRLT or whatever name that's going by, if the Dutch are happy to run it given the issues they've had with races under Covid regulations. After all, the Women's Tour legit looks like four flat stages and an ITT with one stage TBA. Adding the ITT is a good idea, there aren't enough of them on the women's calendar, but only so long as they still have a parcours along the lines of 2016 or 2019 that it can balance against. However with an MTF on day 2 it could well be that Liane is just trying to hold on at the bottom end of the top 10 in the Corsa Rosa, unless she's really stepped that up. She's good at steep gradient ascents which is a good sign - just that Monte Matajûr is like, four times as long as most of the ones she's used to dealing with!
 
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Lippert did split the group on the climb, but then couldn't respond to the accelerations by Brand and Kopecky. Fahlin started the sprint on the wheel of Norsgaard and a bit behind Cavalli, but still managed to close the gap to Lippert, so that was pretty impressive.
 
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Brand attacked with around 5 km to go and won the queen stage in Weimar ahead of Wiebes, who surprisingly made it to the finish, and Norsgaard.



Standings before the last stage in Gotha
 
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They finished early today


Final standings after six stages

Points: Kopecky
QOM: Kathrin Hammes
U23: Norsgaard
 
At least I can console myself that I wasn't close to picking the first two in the prediction's game.
 
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Can someone please explain the race Aalerud won?
It's a .NE one-day race in Catalunya, nothing more complex than that. It was created in 2018 to run alongside the final day of the Volta a Catalunya, to be a more interesting version of the Champs La Course or the one-day Madrid Challenge, being around the Montjuïc Park circuit, but didn't run in 2019 and obviously didn't run last year either. They've run it as a standalone one-day race this year, off the tail of the more established mini-season in the Basque-Navarrese area and Burgos, to try to draw a better field. It's caused a bit more confusion because of translation as the Catalan word for 'sports' is 'esports'.
 
It's a .NE one-day race in Catalunya, nothing more complex than that. It was created in 2018 to run alongside the final day of the Volta a Catalunya, to be a more interesting version of the Champs La Course or the one-day Madrid Challenge, being around the Montjuïc Park circuit, but didn't run in 2019 and obviously didn't run last year either. They've run it as a standalone one-day race this year, off the tail of the more established mini-season in the Basque-Navarrese area and Burgos, to try to draw a better field. It's caused a bit more confusion because of translation as the Catalan word for 'sports' is 'esports'.
I was just looking desperately through this list! And it doesn't appear to exist...
 
So the Giro will return to the WWT next year, and they are also trying to secure live coverage for this years' race.
Ride London Classic will become a three day stage race and the Madrid Challenge gets an extra stage to make it even more of a challenge.

Meanwhile in Switzlerland there's a pretty great group up the road with the Suisse darlings Chabbey, Reusser (who has just won the battle for the Olympic spot) and Neff together with Harvey and Deignan. They have more than two minutes on the peloton with 42 km to go with a chasing group on 1:15, but they are losing time to the five in front.
 
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