Johansson: It’s good to see it’s possible to beat Marianne

Swede repeats 2010 bronze medal in Worlds road race

After taking her third World Championships medal in five years in Saturday's elite women's road race, Sweden's Emma Johansson said that she was also pleased that - finally - Marianne Vos was seen to be beatable.

Johansson formed part of a four-rider attack that went clear close to the finish, but after it had fizzled out, the she returned to the fray to claim bronze in the final bunch sprint.

As a result, Johansson has clinched two bronze medals in the women's road race, in 2010 and 2014 as well as the silver she took behind Vos last year in Tuscany.

Whilst satisfied with her bronze, Johansson argued that it was "very nice" to see that Vos, after years of domination, was actually possible to defeat.

"She's a really strong, awesome rider. [But] It actually might not be bad for women's cycling to move around a bit and have new stronger, younger riders coming up," Johansson said.

"She was still very strong today, maybe a bit beatable and that showed today. It's good for us to see that it's possible, and to see it's possible is very nice."

Johansson was roundly criticised afterwards by Lizzie Armitstead for not working alongside the Briton, Vos and Italy's Elisa Longo Borghini in the four-rider breakaway that almost made it to the finish. But the Swede insisted she had played her cards correctly.

"I was feeling really good and I planned to attack on the last climb, my attack created the gap," she said.

"I knew Lizzie and Marianne were really fast, of course I wanted the group to stay away, but knew if I started pulling then I would be too tired at the finish. I tried to attack at three kilometres to go, but Elisa closed that down.

"We were getting close to the last kilometre, and I was hoping everybody would be getting more stressed," - and therefore her rivals would work harder to keep the group clear.

Instead, "the [chase] group came back" - catching the four ahead - "so I had to re-assess my strategy very fast.

"I rode a perfect strategic race, everything went fine apart from not getting the rainbow jersey."

She wasn't surprised, she said, that Pauline Ferrand-Prevot had taken the World Championships title. "She has had some really amazing results, I was [only] surprised when she was not with us when we went over the climb.

"Then when the chasing group came back from behind, it felt like they had some extra energy by chasing on the descent. She was a real favourite today."

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