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Bastianelli wins Ronde van Drenthe

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Marta Bastianelli wins the Ronde van Drenthe

Marta Bastianelli wins the Ronde van Drenthe (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tiffany Cromwell (Canyon-SRAM) caked in mud as she crosses the line

Tiffany Cromwell (Canyon-SRAM) caked in mud as she crosses the line (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Jessica Allen (Mitchelton-Scott)

Jessica Allen (Mitchelton-Scott) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Ella Harris on the cobbles

Ella Harris on the cobbles (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Chloe Hosking (Ale Cipollini)

Chloe Hosking (Ale Cipollini) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Ella Harris (Canyon-SRAM)

Ella Harris (Canyon-SRAM) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Chantal Blaak (Boels Dolmans)

Chantal Blaak (Boels Dolmans) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Marta Bastianelli moves towards Chantal Blaak in the sprint

Marta Bastianelli moves towards Chantal Blaak in the sprint (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Chantal Blaak and Marta Bastianelli sprint for the line

Chantal Blaak and Marta Bastianelli sprint for the line (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb)

Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Lotto Kopecky (Lotto Soudal)

Lotto Kopecky (Lotto Soudal) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Amy Pieters leads a chasing group over the line

Amy Pieters leads a chasing group over the line (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Sarah Roy at the finish

Sarah Roy at the finish (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Marianne Vos is covered in mud but she's all smiles as she crosses the line

Marianne Vos is covered in mud but she's all smiles as she crosses the line (Image credit: Getty Images)
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It was a close finish but Marta Bastianelli took it

It was a close finish but Marta Bastianelli took it (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Marta Bastianelli and Chantal Blaak divefor the line

Marta Bastianelli and Chantal Blaak divefor the line (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Fans watch the riders go by

Fans watch the riders go by (Image credit: Getty Images)
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The riders wind their way down the road

The riders wind their way down the road (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Amy Pieters and Marianne Vos at the head of the peloton

Amy Pieters and Marianne Vos at the head of the peloton (Image credit: Getty Images)
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It was a grey and wet day for the riders

It was a grey and wet day for the riders (Image credit: Getty Images)
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The riders make their way across one of the cobbled sectors

The riders make their way across one of the cobbled sectors (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Ellen van Dijk leads a group across the cobbles

Ellen van Dijk leads a group across the cobbles (Image credit: Getty Images)

Marta Bastianelli (Team Virtu Cycling) won the Ronde van Drenthe beating Chantal Blaak (Boels Dolmans) and Ellen van Dijk (Trek-Segafredo) in a three-way sprint. Bastianelli also takes the lead in the UCI Women’s WorldTour. 

Van Dijk sparked the race-winning move when she attacked after the final stretch of cobbles. The Dutchwoman spent a number of kilometres alone before she was joined by Blaak and Bastianelli, and the three worked together to hold off the chasing group behind.

The gap was small, but the trio had done enough to hold the chasers off and contest the victory between themselves. Blaak tried to take the sprint from behind, but Bastianelli was quick to react to her and didn’t allow her to pass, beating her by a slim margin on the line.

How it happened

At 165.7 km (plus a five-kilometre neutral zone), the Ronde van Drenthe was the longest UCI Women’s WorldTour race ever. One cobblestone section had been struck from the course due to mud and rain, but this still left 22.2 km of rough cobbles in six separate sections plus three ascents of the remodelled VAM-berg. The steep climb up a landfill site now also includes 200 metres of cobbles.

Rain and wind also left their mark on the race. The first hour was raced in the pouring rain, leading to several crashes and punctures, but the sun came out later on. This and the first passage of the VAM-berg after 22 km split the peloton into five groups, the first two of which came together just before the opening cobblestone section to form a peloton of about forty riders.

Maria Vittoria Sperotto (Bigla) attacked from this group after the fourth cobblestone section, with 91 km still to go, and built an advantage of up to 1:40 minutes. Sperotto was caught again when echelons formed in the crosswinds leading up to the second passage of the VAM-berg.

Grace Brown (Mitchelton-Scott) attacked from the leading group of sixteen riders on the steep, cobbled slopes. The Australian had a 30-second gap at the final passage of the VAM-berg with 51 km to go, winning her the special mountain prize. Behind Brown, two groups had come together to form a peloton of some 25 riders, but nobody took charge of the chase. Brown’s advantage grew to almost two minutes as she entered the penultimate cobblestone section with 25 km to go.

The rough, round cobbles were caked with mud after several days of rain, and Brown’s efforts began to take a toll on her. She came out of the 5.6 km of continuous cobbles (and mud) 1:15 minutes ahead of the chasing group, and her advantage decreased further in the headwind that followed. Brown was in sight of the chasers when she inadvertently took a wrong turn at a roundabout and was caught.

Boels Dolmans forced echelons and dropped several of the sprinters from the first group, and Blaak led the remaining twelve riders onto and through the final cobblestone section with 12 km left to race. Van Dijk attacked when the group reached asphalt with just over nine km to go and got a small gap as the other riders hesitated.

The former world time trial champion settled into an aerodynamic position and powered on while the group fell apart behind her. Blaak and Bastianelli were less than 10 seconds behind Van Dijk, but as Bastianelli did not contribute to the chase, they could not close the gap at first.

Eventually, Bastianelli started taking turns with Blaak, and they caught up with Van Dijk with four kilometres to go. Van Dijk tried a final attack but could not get away, and the trio entered the final kilometre together. Bastianelli was forced to lead the group onto the finishing straight as the two other riders stayed on her wheel, and Blaak opened the sprint. While Van Dijk did not contest the sprint and finished third, Bastianelli countered Blaak’s acceleration and could narrowly keep the Dutch champion behind herself to win.

Amy Pieters (Boels Dolmans) beat Lotte Kopecky (Lotto Soudal) for fourth place in the sprint of the next group 20 seconds later.

Following her fourth place in the Strade Bianche, European champion Bastianelli is now the leader of the UCI Women’s WorldTour. Bastianelli’s teammate Sofia Bertizzolo was the best-placed U23 rider in 33rd place and takes the lead in the UCI Women’s WorldTour youth ranking that she won last year. The next race in the series is the Trofeo Alfredo Binda on Saturday 23 April.

Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marta Bastianelli (Ita) Team Virtu Cycling4:24:14
2Chantal Blaak (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
3Ellen Van Dijk (Ned) Trek - Segafredo
4Amy Pieters (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam0:00:20
5Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
6Amalie Dideriksen (Den) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
7Floortje Mackaij (Ned) Team Sunweb
8Kirsten Wild (Ned) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
9Romy Kasper (Ger) Ale Cipollini
10Jip Van Den Bos (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
11Marianne Vos (Ned) CCC - Liv0:00:36
12Lucinda Brand (Ned) Team Sunweb0:00:37
13Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Canyon-SRAM Racing0:00:43
14Sarah Roy (Aus) Mitchelton Scott0:01:15
15Chloe Hosking (Aus) Ale Cipollini0:01:18
16Alice Barnes (GBr) Canyon-SRAM Racing
17Maria Giulia Confalonieri (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
18Lotta Pauliina Lepistö (Fin) Trek - Segafredo
19Alexis Ryan (USA) Canyon-SRAM Racing
20Malgorzata Jasinska (Pol) Movistar Team Women
21Lisa Klein (Ger) Canyon-SRAM Racing
22Evy Kuijpers (Ned) CCC - Liv
23Roxane Knetemann (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
24Aude Biannic (Fra) Movistar Team Women
25Elizabeth Banks (GBr) Bigla
26Audrey Cordon Ragot (Fra) Trek - Segafredo
27Lisa Brennauer (Ger) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
28Lauren Kitchen (Aus) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope0:01:54
29Alison Jackson (Can) Team Tibco - Silicon Valley Bank
30Julie Leth (Den) Bigla
31Janneke Ensing (Ned) Team Sunweb
32Grace Brown (Aus) Mitchelton Scott
33Sofia Bertizzolo (Ita) Team Virtu Cycling
34Mieke Kröger (Ger) Team Virtu Cycling
35Amber Van Der Hulst (Ned) Netherlands0:03:00
36Annelies Dom (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies0:03:01
37Rotem Gafinovitz (Isr) Canyon-SRAM Racing
38Eva Buurman (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
39Roxane Fournier (Fra) Movistar Team Women
40Marta Tagliaferro (Ita) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
41Ella Harris (NZl) Canyon-Sram Racing
42Soraya Paladin (Ita) Ale Cipollini
43Gracie Elvin (Aus) Mitchelton Scott
44Danielle Christmas (GBr) Lotto Soudal Ladies0:04:11
45Pfeiffer Georgi (GBr) Team Sunweb
46Sandra Alonso Dominguez (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango
47Jelena Erić (Srb) Ale Cipollini
48Nina Kessler (Ned) Team Tibco - Silicon Valley Bank0:04:21
DNFChristine Majerus (Lux) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
DNFKarlijn Swinkels (Ned) Ale Cipollini
DNFNadia Quagliotto (Ita) Ale Cipollini
DNFNicole Hanselmann (Swi) Bigla
DNFMaria Vittoria Sperotto (Ita) Bigla
DNFMartina Alzini (Ita) Bigla
DNFValerie Demey (Bel) CCC - Liv
DNFMarta Lach (Pol) CCC - Liv
DNFJeanne Korevaar (Ned) CCC - Liv
DNFRiejanne Markus (Ned) CCC - Liv
DNFVictorie Guilman (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFCoralie Demay (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFEmilia Fahlin (Swe) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFGreta Richioud (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFMaëlle Grossetete (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle - Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFJessica Allen (Aus) Mitchelton Scott
DNFLucy Kennedy (Aus) Mitchelton Scott
DNFNina Buijsman (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFLorena Wiebes (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFFemke Markus (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFMarit Raaijmakers (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFEsther Van Veen (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFIngrid Drexel Clouthier (Mex) Team Tibco - Silicon Valley Bank
DNFKendall Ryan (USA) Team Tibco - Silicon Valley Bank
DNFRozanne Slik (Ned) Team Tibco - Silicon Valley Bank
DNFBarbara Guarischi (Ita) Team Virtu Cycling
DNFTrine Schmidt (Den) Team Virtu Cycling
DNFKatarzyna Pawlowska (Pol) Team Virtu Cycling
DNFLauretta Hanson (Aus) Trek - Segafredo
DNFAbigail Van Twisk (GBr) Trek - Segafredo
DNFAnna Plichta (Pol) Trek - Segafredo
DNFElisa Balsamo (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
DNFMarta Cavalli (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
DNFDalia Muccioli (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
DNFSilvia Persico (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
DNFIlaria Sanguineti (Ita) Valcar Cylance Cycling
DNFSarah Rijkes (Aut) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
DNFErica Magnaldi (Ita) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
DNFLea Lin Teutenberg (Ger) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
DNFLara Vieceli (Ita) WNT Rotor Pro Cycling Team
DNFHenrietta Colborne (GBr) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFMerel Hofman (Ned) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFRoos Hoogeboom (Ned) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFMelanie Klement (Ned) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFNatalie Van Gogh (Ned) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFNienke Wasmus (Ned) Biehler Pro Cycling
DNFAinara Elbusto Arteaga (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango
DNFNatalie Grinczer (GBr) Bizkaia - Durango
DNFLuisa Ibarrola Albizua (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango
DNFIsabel Martin Martin (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango
DNFAroa Gorostiza Ulloa (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango
DNFGrace Garner (GBr) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
DNFLucy Garner (GBr) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
DNFAmalie Lutro (Nor) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
DNFChanella Stougje (Ned) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
DNFLonneke Uneken (Ned) Hitec Products - Birk Sport
DNFDemi De Jong (Ned) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFChantal Hoffmann (Lux) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFThi That Nguyen (Vie) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFLourdes Oyarbide Jimenez (Spa) Movistar Team Women
DNFGloria Rodriguez Sanchez (Spa) Movistar Team Women
DNFAlba Teruel Ribes (Spa) Movistar Team Women
DNFSusanne Andersen (Nor) Team Sunweb
DNFJulia Soek (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNFEva Bijwaard (Ned) Netherlands
DNFMaaike Boogaard (Ned) Netherlands
DNFCathalijne Hoolwerf (Ned) Netherlands
DNFEva Jonkers (Ned) Netherlands
DNFAnne Tauber (Ned) Netherlands
DNFSara Mustonen (Swe) Health Mate - Ladies Team
DNFEsther Meisels (Isr) Health Mate - Ladies Team
DNFKathrin Schweinberger (Aut) Health Mate - Ladies Team
DNFChristina Schweinberger (Aut) Health Mate - Ladies Team
DNFKirstie Van Haaften (Ned) Health Mate - Ladies Team
DNFKylie Waterreus (Ned) Health Mate - Ladies Team

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