The second World Cup of the year was Trofeo Alfredo Binda last Sunday in Cittiglio, next to Varese. It was won by Emma Johansson who outsprinted Lizzie Armitstead and Alena Amialiusik.
I ended sixth after a really good race, in my opinion. I attacked and tried hard but I messed up in the sprint (strange! Just kidding, I am better known for my climbing abilities) and I got boxed in. The team and staff worked really well for me giving me the best possibility to perform.
But today in this post I would prefer to write about what this race means for me than about the competition itself.
Trofeo Binda is among my favourite races on the calendar for many reasons; the lap and the organisation are nice and perfect, I won it last year, and – last but not least – it is the nearest race to my hometown so relatives and friends are all there to cheer me on.
Having someone you love watching you while racing is amazing. It makes you give that two per cent more effort that sometimes can make the difference.
On Sunday I had my mum, sister in law, and nieces at the GPM, my dad in the team car, and all the other relatives spread out on the lap. I often heard my oldest niece Anna shouting, "FORZA ZIA ELISA!" and this made me proud and glad.
As I said I didn't have only my family there but also some of my friends, especially the ones from my small, home town Ornavasso.
They founded a group called "Zampine Orna" (which literally translates as "Little paws from Ornavasso" but it would be too long and stupid to explain the reason why!) which supports the local volley-ball team that competes at the top level, the football team, and myself as a cyclist.
They were on the climb with flags and they were running behind me like fools (but aren't all crazy cycling fans like that?). I really had to concentrate to avoid laughing while racing!
They also gave stickers and t-shirts to some of the other riders both from Hitec and other teams including Ellen Van Dijk, Alena Amialiusik, Valentina Scandolara, Audrey Cordon, Giorgia Bronzini and a lot of others. Some of the girls even put the stickers on their helmets!
Now they are busy making a video from their day at Binda and they will publish it soon on their Facebook page.
Well, I know they are crazy... :-)
After these stories I hope you all can understand what Trofeo Binda is for me; not only a stunning race but also a day that my family and my friends make special!