The native area of Alfredo Binda will play host to a major event on March 24, the Trofeo Alfredo Binda - Comune di Cittiglio. It also happens to be the next round of the Women's World Cup. Easter Monday will see the top women fight it out for the World Cup standings, currently led by American Katheryn Mattis (Webcor Builders Cycling Team), following her surprise win in Geelong, Australia. Matthis and Australian Emma Rickards were in a two-women break and could not be caught by the peloton. Due to a broken collarbone, the American will not be able to defend her lead.
This will be first of two major events in this area for the year, with the World Championships in Varese, nestled in northern Italy between Lago Maggiore and Lago di Como, coming at the twilight of the season. The race started in 1974, but it is the tenth year as the Trofeo Alfredo Binda and what better way to celebrate it than with hosting a World Cup, with the top women on the start. The teams confirmed to the event include Team High Road, Team DSB Bank, Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung, Menikini – Selle Italia, Bigla Cycling Team, Cervelo Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team, Team Halfords Bikehut, Team Flexpoint, Safi Pasta Zara Manhattan, Cycling Team Titanedi- Frezza Acca Due O, AA – Drink Cyclin Team, Gauss RDZ Ormu, Vrienden Van Het Platteland, USC Chirio Forno D'Asolo, Team Specialized Designs For Women, Fenixs, Giant Pro Cycling, Lotto – Belisol Ladies Team, Team Pro Feminin Les Carroz, S.C.Michela Fanini Record Rox, Team CMAX Dila, Swift Racing, Top Girls Fassa Bortolo Raxy Line, Bizkaia Durango, Team Uniqua and Pol Aqua.
The route is 121 kilometres in length. A first loop will have to be done twice, with the QOM points given at Rancio Valcuvia, in Brinzio. In the final laps, the climb of Cuvio ad Orino has to be tackled three times, before the finish line relieves the riders. Recent winners include Nicole Cooke, who won in 2005 and is also the defending champion. Regina Schleicher took the honours in 2006 and Australian Oenone Wood in 2004. Diana Ziliute won in 2003. Also at the start line will be 2001 winner Nicole Brändli.
Other notable riders include Noemi Cantele, who virtually rides at home, 2006 junior winner and current world champion Marta Bastianelli, Yulia Martisova, the last Italian winner Fabiana Luperini (2000) and Edita Pucinskaite. Giorgia Bronzini, the bronze medal winner of the Worlds in Stuttgart, will give her season debut on Monday.