Canyon-SRAM will field a strong team capable of winning the Women's Tour of Flanders on Sunday with last year's fifth placed rider Elena Cecchini. The Italian will aim to have a stronger performance this time around that could see her on the podium.
"It's an iconic race, the one almost every cyclist would like to win in their own career," said Cecchini in a team press release.
"I really want to win this race one day. I know it's a lot about having perfect form, a perfect day, a great team with you and a good amount of luck and race experience. But in a one day race everything can happen and I'm already dreaming about Sunday.
"I think Canyon-SRAM Racing have a lot of cards in our team to deal out to the competition on Sunday."
Canyon-SRAM's team will also feature Alena Amialiusik, who was seventh last year, and Barbara Guarischi, who is just returning to racing after recovering from shoulder surgery following a crash at Omloop van het Hageland. The team will also include Tiffany Cromwell, Alexis Ryan and Lisa Brennauer, who recently placed second at Gent-Wevelgem.
Sunday's 141km race will include five cobble sectors and ten climbs including the combo Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg, that has a 20 per cent max grade.
"In 2013 I was in an early crash on the Molenberg, in 2014 I was in the second group behind the best girls and last year I was fifth. There's room for improvement," Cecchini said.
The Women's Tour of Flanders marks the fifth round of the new Women's WorldTour. Cecchini is taking the race very seriously and did a recon of the course on Monday.
"On Monday I saw it with a former Lotto Soudal teammate. We started with bad conditions: pouring rain and 60km/hr winds. But the sun came out and we even had a tailwind after the Paterberg."
The team's German road race champion Trixi Worrack was originally scheduled to compete at the Women's Tour of Flanders, however, a crash at the Trofeo Binda Alfredo race resulted in emergency kidney surgery. She is at home and recovering but it is unclear if she will be able to race again.
Guarischi admitted in the team press release that the last month has been hard for the team following Worrack's crash and emergency kidney surgery after Trofeo Alfredo Binda.
"If I can come back and give a little smile to the amazing people on this team I will do and then I think about the race. I'm ready to suffer for my teammates."
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