Race report

Susanne Andersen 4th at GP Beghelli after attacking team display

Gran Premio Bruno Beghelli Internazionale Donne Elite

Awaiting the riders today at GP Beghelli was an 80 kilometre race; made up of a circuit that started and finished in the town of Monteveglio. The parcours was undulating with the main focal point of the circuit being the one and a half kilometre long climb at Zappolino, which averaged just over five percent. Once over the crest of the climb, it would be a fast nine kilometre run-in to the line, with bunch sprints deciding the day on the previous four editions of the race.

From the flag drop it was an aggressive start to the day with numerous attacks in the bunch. The team were well represented at the head of the race, with Franziska Koch riding strongly to make the early break of five. They managed to gain an advantage of 20 seconds over the peloton but were soon reeled back in before Koch again went on the attack, this time dragging one other rider clear. However, the bunch was soon hot on their wheels and they were caught and back within the peloton. The attacking racing took a hiatus after one solo rider escaped and the sprint teams took control at the front of the bunch, looking to set things up for the finale.

Before the last passage of the climb everything was back together and the tempo increased. Floortje Mackaij and Juliette Labous set a really fierce pace on the ascent before Liane Lippert delivered a stinging attack, going clear with two other riders. However, they were only able to gain an advantage of around ten seconds and with the chase group behind swelling on the descent, the front of the race was back together as they headed towards the finish in Monteveglio. Julia Soek did a good job to position Susanne Andersen near the head of the bunch coming into the sprint, with the young Norwegian delivering a good turn of speed to take fourth place on the day.

“I think we did a really strong race as a team, where everybody could use their qualities to contribute to our goals today,” explained Andersen at the finish. “We first of all wanted to create breakaways, with Franzi going full gas on the downhill and the other girls on the climb. We were always close to each other, communicating well, following up on each other and in all the dangerous breaks. Honestly, it was close to a perfect race. After closing a gap that opened in a corner with 700 metres to go, I didn’t have that last kick and strength needed to end up on the podium, but I think we can be really proud of how we raced today.”

Team Sunweb coach Hans Timmermans added: “We did exactly what we wanted to do today. We had Franziska in the first break with Cordon-Ragot from Trek so that we could put some pressure on the other teams and along with them we really made the race. They were brought back and on the last lap Liane put in a really strong attack on the climb to break clear with Longo Borghini and Paladin. The group behind swelled and Liane’s group was brought back within the final kilometres. Susanne was still in the front group and she sprinted to a good fourth place but of course we had hoped to be on the podium after today’s great team performance. We can be incredibly proud of the team today though, everyone did a great job; with Franziska in the early breaks, Juliette and Floortje making a really hard pace on the last climb to set up Liane, then Julia doing some good positioning work for Susanne in the finale. The whole team can be happy with today and it was a good performance to end our European season on.”

Results

Pos. Rider Team Time Points
1 BASTIANELLI Marta Italy 1:57:21 125
2 WIEBES Lorena Parkhotel Valkenburg ,, 85
3 CONSONNI Chiara Valcar Cylance Cycling ,, 70