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Strade Bianche Women - Live Coverage

Strade Bianche Women 2022 - Profile

Strade Bianche Women 2022 - Profile (Image credit: Strade Bianche Women)

2022 Women's WorldTour: The definitive guide

Strade Bianche Women 2022

Strade Bianche Women 2022 – Preview

10 riders to watch at Strade Bianche Women 2022

Strade Bianche Women 2022 - Start List

Result

1 Lotte Kopecky (Bel) SD Worx 03:59:14
2 Annemiek Van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar
3 Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (RSA) SD Worx 00:00:10
4 Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-Sram 00:00:19
5 Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle-Acquitaine Futuroscope 00:00:24
6 Elise Chabbey (Swi) Canyon-Sram 00:00:28
7 Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma 00:00:29
8 Grace Brown (Aus) FDJ Nouvelle-Acquitaine Futuroscope 00:00:39
9 Demi Vollering (Ned) SD Worx 00:00:50
10 Liane Lippert (Ger) Team DSM 00:01:37

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Hello and welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of Strade Bianche Women, the first round of the 2022 Women's WorldTour

After last week's Opening Weekend racing, today is the official start of the Women's WorldTour season and there's a stacked field ready to take on the white roads of Tuscany. 

Jumbo Visma's Marianne Vos has returned to road racing after taking a break after winning her cyclocross world title, and BikeExchange's Amanda Spratt is back in action after arterial surgery in her leg. 

Also racing is defending champion Chantal van den Broek Blaak and Demi Vollering for SD Worx, Annemiek van Vluten of Movistar (who has three wins behind her already this year), and Trek-Segafredo's Elisa Longo Borghini.

Canyon//SRAM's Kasia Niewiadoma is also racing, she has been on the podium four times in the race's (relatively short) history but has never made the top step - could today finally be her day?

Unfortunately BikeExchange's Kristen Faulkner and Ane Santesteban will not be on the startline today after crashing during a recon yesterday.

The riders will depart from Siena at 9:10am CET and cover 136km (including 31.6km of 'Strade Bianche' or white gravel roads). For full course details check out our race preview

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Given the nature of the race's gravel-heavy parcours teams go to great lengths to dial in their recons and equipment. You can read more about that here

T-2 minutes until the start, teams are signed on and ready to go! 

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They're all there and ready to go

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And they're off! 

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Also in action today is World Champion Elisa Balsamo

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Rebecca Koerner of Uno-X is the first rider to attack

133km to go

Emily Newsom of EF Education First Tibco and Koerner now lead. No time gap just yet. 

120km to go

Throwback to this moment from Emily Newsom at last year's Giro Donne

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The race is already on the first gravel of the day, a 2.1km flat sector, and the leaders have a 1'30" advantage. 

118km to go

Newsom and Koerner are onto the second gravel sector. Their lead is now up to 2'30"

Newsom has gravel racing pedigree and finished third at Unbound which she describes as "comparable to childbirth". 

11km to go

Newsom now leads solo after her young Dutch breakaway companion was dropped on the climb during the second sector.

105km to go

Jumbo-Visma and Team DSM appear to be controlling the race at the front of the peloton

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The next few gravel sectors are all longer, at 5.8 km, 4.4 km, and 5.5 km respectively before the longest, San Martino in Grania, which is 9.5 km and includes gradients up to 17%.

The final sector comes 12km from the finish.

Newsom's gap is now 3'15" 

😍

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Here's the peloton on the fourth gravel sector. Koerner still has one minute on the bunch while Newsom retains a 2'50" advantage 

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88km to go

Here's what last year's winner, Chantal van den Broek Blaak, had to say before the race.

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Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig predicted that from the 6th gravel sector the race will be "full on" - it's getting near, let's see if she's right. 

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The riders are on the San Martino in Grania gravel sector and the gap is down to 2'15"

62km to go

Newsom's advantage is waning as we enter the final 60km of the race. It's now down to 1'48"

Newsom's lead is now down to 30 seconds!

59km to go

Newsom has been caught and around 40 riders remain in the front with the wind causing splits 

50km to go

The groups are back together and the pace has slowed 

Movistar are amassed at the front of the peloton 

A small group has split off the front but they are being chased down already 

Movistar have closed the gap and the group is back together 

The attacks are flying! Now Floortje Mackaij of Team DSM goes

Marianne Vos is at the Jumbo Visma team car speaking to the team DS

46km to go

Attack from Jeanne Korevaar who has a small gap

Grace Brown (FDJ) and Mavi Garcia (UAE) have joined Korevaar

The peloton sensed the danger in such a strong move and Anouska Koster of Jumbo Visma closes the group down. All together with 44.6km to go.

Mechanical for Magdeleine Vallieres of EF Tibco Sillicon Valley Bank 

Another attack from a Liv Racing rider, this time it's Valerie Demey who tried to force a gap but Canyon//SRAM and Movistar are quick to close it down 

The peloton is all together heading towards the next gravel sector.

40km to go

Niamh Fisher-Black drives the pace at the front for Team SD Worx

38km to go

The pace has ramped up heading with UAE, Jumbo Visma, FDJ, and Liv Raving taking turns at the front 

Attack from Erica Magnaldi of Team UAE and she gets a gap

Another attack from Liv Racing who have been very active so far. 

Chantal van den Broek Black attacks! With Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) and Liane Lippert (Team DSM) straight on her wheel. 

Attack from Marta Bastianelli of Team UAE who already has two wins under her belt this season! 4km until the next gravel sector! 

A group of 10 riders has gone clear with most WWT teams present but Movistar are unhappy with the composition and are chasing with Aude Biannic on the front

27km to go

The race is back together as they approach the next gravel climb 

Movistar look to be leading van Vleuten out into the bottom of this gravel climb 

van Vleuten leads with Lotte Kopecky of SD Worx, Kasia Niewiadoma of Canyon//SRAM and Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig of FDJ with Liane Lippert of Team DSM also near the front 

Attack from Soraya Paladin of Canyon//SRAM 

All the favourites are clustered at the front on this climb as Elisa Longo Borghini and Marianne Vos are also there 

A select group has formed over the top of the last gravel climb as they now approach a very steep tarmac rise

Huge attack from Lotte Kopecky of SD Worx!

Kopecky has a 13 second advantage 

20km to go

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19 seconds now for Kopecky as they enter the penultimate gravel sector 

Kasia Niewiadoma is leading the much-reduced bunch up this steep gravel rise with Kopecky in sight now 

Kopecky is caught 

18.8km to go

A select group of six riders which includes  Annemeik van Vleuten, Marianne Vos, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig, and Ashleigh Moolman Pasio, is left at the front with Elisa Longo Borghini leading the chase group behind which also contains Demi Vollering and Chantal van den Broek Blaak

Demi Vollering has bridged to the front group with Shirin van Anrooij of Trek

17.7km to go

The two group have now combined. Around 15 riders remain.

The group contains, Annemiek van Vleuten of Movistar, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig and Grace Brown of FDJ, Demi Vollering, Lotte Kopecky, Ashleigh Moolman Pasio and Chantal van den Broek Blaak of SD Worx, Silvia Persico of Valcar, Shirin van Anrooij and Elisa Longo Borghini of Trek Segafredo, Elise Chabbey and Kasia Niewiadoma of Canyon//SRAM, Floortje Mackaij and Liane Lippert of Team DSM and Marianne Vos of Jumbo Visma.

Attack from Chantal van den Broek Blaak 

The group is all together with 12.6km to go as they hit the final gravel sector.

Huge attack from Annemiek van Vleuten but she is unable to get a gap. Demi Vollering comes over the top with Lotte Kopecky following

Kopecky is the only rider able to follow van Vleuten up the steep gravel climb and the pair have a gap 

Six riders are remain in the group chasing Kopecky and van Vleuten. Kopecky is looking comfortable on van Vleuten's wheel.

10km to go

The gap is hovering around 10 seconds between the two leaders and the chase group of Marianne Vos, Elisa Longo Borghini, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig, Ashleigh Moolman Pasio, Kasia Niewiadoma and Demi Vollering 

8.8km to go

The chase group have the leading pair in their sights now 

Counter attack from Ashleigh Moolman Pasio as Kopecky and van Vleuten are caught as van Vleuten is forced to chase her down with Niewiadoma on her wheel 

Kopecky, Niewiadoma, van Vleuten, Uttrup Ludwig, and Moolman Pasio remain at the front as Vos and Vollering are distanced 

Moolman Pasio leads the front group as Vos and Vollering continue to chase 

The front five riders begin to look at one another giving the two Dutchwomen chance to get back on

Attack from Demi Vollering as soon as she regained contact with the front but van Vleuten immediately closes. 

Niewiadoma is the next to go with Uttrup Ludwig right behind her 

Despite her earlier moves Kopecky is looking very composed

Another attack from Moolman Pasio as the chase group rejoin the front including Grace Brown, Shirin van Anrooij, and Silvia Persico 

Elise Chabbey who was also part of the chase immediately attacks for Canyon//SRAM

4km to go

Attack from Shirin van Anrooij of Trek

1.9km to go

The riders are on the main road now just before the turn towards the steep climb of Via Santa Caterina towards the finish line in Piazza del Campo

Flamme rouge! 

Van Vleuten attacks and once again it's Lotte Kopecky glued to her wheel. Kopecky's teammate Moolman Pasio is also looking strong behind 

It's van Vleuten vs Kopecky and Moolman Pasio on the final rise towards to the finish

Moolman Pasio is dropped it's van Vleuten vs Kopecky 

Lotte Kopecky wins Strade Bianche! Annemiek van Vleuten takes second and Koecky's teammate Moolman Pasio rounds off the podium

Top-10:

1 Lotte Kopecky (Bel) SD Worx 03:59:14
2 Annemiek Van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar
3 Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (RSA) SD Worx 00:00:10
4 Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-Sram 00:00:19
5 Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle-Acquitaine Futuroscope 00:00:24
6 Elise Chabbey (Swi) Canyon-Sram 00:00:28
7 Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma 00:00:29
8 Grace Brown (Aus) FDJ Nouvelle-Acquitaine Futuroscope 00:00:39
9 Demi Vollering (Ned) SD Worx 00:00:50
10 Liane Lippert (Ger) Team DSM 00:01:37

Winner Lotte Kopecky:

"I cannot believe this but this was actually really the plan for the team. Racing like this with SD Worx is super nice to because I can attack myself and I have teammates behind me who have my back. I think today was just perfect. 

I can't believe this! I'm just feeling today I knew that the person to follow was Annemiek. At first I had to let her go a bit and I don't know what happened in my head. I just kept going and when we turned to the right I passed her and then the other corner she passed me again. 

It was really one sprint through the last corner. It's amazing to win this race.I knew [about the final]. I watched the race from last year, the men's race with two or three in the streets here, so I was really prepared for the sprint. For sure [it's the biggest win in my career]"

Thanks for following out live coverage of Strade Bianche. Be sure to join us for the next round of the Women's WorldTour, Ronde van Drenthe on the 12th March! 

SIENA ITALY MARCH 05 Lotte Kopecky of Belgium and Team SD Worx celebrates winning during the Eroica 8th Strade Bianche 2022 Womens Elite a 136km one day race from Siena to Siena Piazza del Campo 321m StradeBianche on March 05 2022 in Siena Italy Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images

(Image credit: Luc ClaessenGetty Images)

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