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2022 Team Preview: Jumbo-Visma Women

CUNEO, ITALY - JULY 01: Marianne Vos of Netherlands, Nancy Van Der Burg of Netherlands, Riejanne Markus of Netherlands, Anouska Helena Koster of Netherlands, Julie Van De Velde of Belgium & Teuntje Beekhuis of Netherlands and Jumbo Visma Team during the 32nd Giro d'Italia Internazionale Femminile 2021 - Team Presentation / #GiroDonne / #UCIWWT / on July 01, 2021 in Cuneo, Italy. (Photo by Luc Claessen/Getty Images)
The Jumbo-Visma Women's squad at the 2021 Giro d'Italia Donne (Image credit: Luc Claessen/Getty Images)

Who?

Manager: Esra Tromp
Squad size: 13
Average age: 25.9

The newest UCI team last year, this time around the Dutch squad kick off their campaign with a Women's WorldTour licence, a bolstered squad, and a year of experience under their belt.

Jumbo-Visma were the latest in a line of teams to have branched out from established men's squads, with Cofidis and Uno-X having followed suit this season, as well as UAE, who take over Alé BTC Ljubljana.

With Marianne Vos as the marquee name on the roster in their inaugural year, the team were already more or less a top-level squad, receiving invites to whatever Women's WorldTour races they desired. It was a very solid 2021 campaign for the squad, as they finished ninth on the UCI rankings, with 12 wins coming via Vos, Anna Henderson, and Riejanne Markus.

All three women remain on board for 2022, with the squad undergoing few changes into their second season. The retiring Nancy van der Burg leaves along with Julie Van de Velde (Plantur-Pura) and Pernille Mathiesen (Cofidis), while former Tour of Flanders and Women's Tour winner Coryn Labecki has signed up, adding extra firepower. Youngsters Noemi Rüegg and Linda Riedmann also join.

How they fared in 2021

Wins: 12
Ranking: 9th, 5,413 points

The team haven't yet hit the heights of their male counterparts headed up by Primož Roglič and Wout van Aert, though after just one season of operation, that's to be expected. Still, Jumbo-Visma Women did pick up some big wins along the way last season.

Marianne Vos grabbed the first four of them and added another three later in the season. In the spring, she took her first career wins at both Gent-Wevelgem and Amstel Gold Race, also recording a podium finish at the Trofeo Binda. The summer saw her take third at La Course by Le Tour, win twice at the Giro d'Italia Donne (including a record 30th stage win), and then take three stages at the Simac Ladies Tour before finishing second at the Worlds and the inaugural Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

Riejanne Markus was the other rider on the squad to record a Women's WorldTour win, taking victory on stage 2 of the Ladies Tour of Norway. Anna Henderson, meanwhile, grabbed two stages and the overall at the Kreiz Breizh Elites as well as the British time trial title.

Elsewhere on the team, other highlights included Karlijn Swinkels finishing fourth at the Festival Elsy Jacobs and Anouska Koster taking the Kreiz Breizh Elites points jersey and the Simac Ladies Tour mountains jersey.

Key riders

Marianne Vos

The undisputed leader of the team, Vos is the most accomplished rider in the women's peloton, having won almost everything there is to win around the calendar. The Dutchwoman turns 35 in May but has shown no signs of slowing down yet. Last year she recorded her 238th career victory in August, added five Women's WorldTour victories to her palmarès, and once again came achingly close to winning a fourth world title in Leuven.

2022 will see her tackling familiar challenges and one brand new one, too. The Tour of Flanders, Amstel Gold Race, and La Flèche Wallonne – each of which she has won before – make up the bulk of her spring along with Roubaix, while the big summer goal will be the Tour de France Femmes. We should see plenty more wins from her along the way.

Coryn Labecki

29-year-old Labecki joins off the back of a five-year stint at Team DSM which saw her rise to among the top riders of the women's peloton. Her 2017 and 2018 campaigns, which saw her win Trofeo Binda, the Tour of Flanders, the RideLondon Classique, the Women's Tour, and the US road race title, saw her cement her status as a top 10-ranked rider.

Since those golden years, she's had a tougher time racking up the big wins, having taken three in total from 2019 onwards, including the final stage of the Giro d'Italia Donne last year. There's no reason why she can't get back to her best at her new team, though. On paper, her and Vos look to be among the strongest one-two punches in the peloton, and the pair should be among the top contenders for the spring Classics and sprints throughout the season.

Anna Henderson

The Briton took the second most wins on the team last year, including her first ever pro win at the Kreiz Breizh Elites. The 23-year-old also finished third at the Baloise Ladies Tour and grabbed a national road title to go with it.

She started out the season in more of a domestique role, riding impressively on the attack during several Spring Classics as Vos was able to save energy behind. She also helped the Dutchwoman to second in Roubaix and was again on the attack at the Leuven Worlds. Her rapid development should see her get even more chances in 2022, especially in top-level Women's WorldTour races. In her, Vos, and Labecki, the team have a very strong potential leadership trio for the upcoming season.

Riejanne Markus

All-rounder Markus is another key helper in the squad who was often found by Vos' side – the pair have been teammates for four years – in the front group deep into races while also being a top time triallist in her own right. Her victory in Norway – just ahead of future teammate Labecki – was her first at Women's WorldTour level, while she also finished top 10 at both European and Worlds time trials.

Strengths

Vos is undoubtedly the major strength of the team as a serial winner throughout her 16-year pro career. A rider with over 200 wins on the board, including successes at almost every major race you can care to name, is always going to be a leader – both on the road and being able to mentor and inspire teammates, too.

Labecki should prove a good foil in the upcoming year, a very strong rider – if not quite an equal – who can work with Vos to get results for both of them. With her on board and Henderson still progressing, there's no doubt that the team is stronger than they were in 2021.

Weaknesses

Really the only major weakness one can pick out at Jumbo-Visma is that the team isn't quite as stacked as some rivals such as SD Worx or Trek-Segafredo. They have three leaders for 2022, though you feel like they would be in trouble if Vos got ill or injured. Of course, you could say the same about several other teams with a major stand-out rider, so how much that is really a weakness is debatable.

Verdict

The team enjoyed a strong debut campaign in the women's peloton, though they were a step below some of the established top squads, with Vos the major outlet for results and wins.

That should change this year with the addition of Labecki, as well the development of other younger riders in the team such as Henderson, Rüegg, and junior Worlds bronze medallist Riedmann. Look out for a more rounded display from the Dutch team this year.

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Daniel Ostanek has been a staff writer at Cyclingnews since August 2019, having joined in 2017 as a freelance contributor and later part-time production editor. Before Cyclingnews, he was published in numerous publications around the cycling world, including Procycling, CyclingWeekly, CyclingTips, Cyclist, and Rouleur, among others. As well as reporting and writing news and features, Daniel runs the 'How to watch' content throughout the season.


Daniel has reported from the world's top races, including the Tour de France, and has interviewed a number of the sport's biggest stars, including Egan Bernal, Wout van Aert, Remco Evenepoel, Mark Cavendish, and Anna van der Breggen. Daniel rides a 2002 Landbouwkrediet Colnago C40 and his favourite races are Strade Bianche and the Vuelta a España.