The team wins the opening stage and Ruth Winder claims the first pink jersey of the Giro Donne
A determined Trek-Segafredo came into the opening team time trial to put in the best ride possible for team leader Elisa Longo Borghini. In the end, that motivation pushed the team to the stage win and into the first pink jersey of the 2021 Giro d’ Italia Internazionale Femminile.
“We tried very hard today because we have such a strong leader with Elisa who is super strong and super Italian, very proud, and this race means a lot to her,” said Ruth Winder, who was first across the finish and claimed the pink jersey. “Because we all have so much respect for her, it means so much for all of us as well. To do a really strong TTT to set Elisa up for the entire week was really important today, so lots of motivation for me and the whole team.”
The last team on the road, SD-Worx, was the only team to threaten their time of 33 minutes and 40 seconds, and they came close, finishing eight seconds slower in the 26.7-kilometer race.
Racing with more reason than the stage win gave Trek-Segafredo an extra edge, a testament to the unique chemistry amongst the riders of Trek-Segafredo.
The team focused on going fast. There was no thought as to who might cross the line first and take the leader’s jersey – it was all-in to put Longo Borghini in the best starting position possible ahead of two hard mountain days followed by an individual time trial.
“We didn’t know the times as we crossed the line, so it wasn’t the plan for me to cross the line first and take the pink jersey,” explained Winder. “We were all just going full-gas to the line, and it just happened that around the last round-about, I was second behind Ellen (van Dijk), and we were just sprinting full for the line.”
It is not the first go-round in pink for Ruth Winder, who wore the coveted jersey in the 2018 Giro after winning Stage 5.
“It’s a very special jersey, and I hope it gives the whole team magic. I am very excited to wear it and now see what we can do the whole week, especially with Elisa,” she added.