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Giro d'Italia Donne: Deignan 'frustrated' at Trek's communication in TTT

Lizzie Deignan and Ruth Winder during the team time trial stage 1 at the Giro d'Italia Donne
Lizzie Deignan and Ruth Winder during the team time trial stage 1 at the Giro d'Italia Donne (Image credit: Getty Images)

Lizzie Deignan has expressed frustration over her Trek-Segafredo team's lack of communication and technique during their winning performance in the stage 1 team time trial at the Giro d'Italia Donne

Their performance put American Ruth Winder in the first leader's jersey of the 10-day race but Deignan said they have areas to improve upon when it comes to the team time trial.

"We won the race but we didn't have the best technical performance," Deignan said following the stage in Cuneo.

"I was on the limit and in these moments you have to try to communicate if there is a problem. There was a point in the line where there was a dramatic change in speeds and I was trying to communicate to the car but they were getting the wrong message, so I was frustrated," she said.

The Giro d'Italia Donne kicked off on Friday with a 26.7km team time trial that started in Fossano and finished in Cuneo. Trek-Segafredo covered the route in a winning time of 33:40 beating SD Worx by eight seconds and Ale BTC Ljubljana by 40 seconds.

Winder was the first rider from Trek-Segafredo to cross the line, and secured the first maglia rosa of the event, followed by Ellen van Dijk, Elisa Longo Borghini, and the Deignan.

While team time trial discipline was a fairly regular addition to top-level women's calendar up until a few years ago, the event ended as a trade-team discipline at the World Championships in 2018, moving to a mixed-relay format in 2019. 

There is also the Postnord UCI WWT Vårgårda WestSweden TTT, however, it has been cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID-19. Apart from a stage at the Giro d'Italia Donne, the event has become somewhat rare on the calendar in the last year or two.

"In the end, the main thing is that we had a really strong performance," Deignan said. " Maybe, technically it was not the best, but strong. I think you can see from the camera that I was really, the fourth woman, and I survived and we won, so I'm happy."

The Giro d'Italia Donne continues on Saturday with stage 2's 100.1km race from Boves to the first mountaintop finish at Prato Nevoso.

Kirsten Frattini

Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.