The women's cycling season is gearing up for the longest stage race of its calendar, the Giro d'Italia Donne
Awaiting the debut of the Tour de France Femmes next year, the race in the Belpaese retains its status and charm as the hardest stage race, this year even more so thanks to a tough and unpredictable route.
The ambitions of Trek-Segafredo are high and the roster selection clearly shows this. A top squad that includes Elisa Longo Borghini, Lizzie Deignan, Lucinda Brand, Ellen van Dijk, Tayler Wiles and Ruth Winder.
We asked team directors and hugely successful former sprinters Ina-Yoko Teutenberg and Giorgia Bronzini – 13 stage wins for the German, 8 for the Italian – to talk us through the women’s Giro: hopes, goals and a technical point of view to lead us into the upcoming 10 stages from July 2-11.
It's one of the most important and prestigious races of the season, we have a big focus on it. The construction of the team reflects this. We want to be ambitious and aggressive to the maximum
- Ina-Yoko Teutenberg
It's the best team we could have chosen. In the last races we've seen the riders in good shape, some already in top form while others are still improving. We have a GC leader in Elisa to protect and then several stages that are well suited to our characteristics. We'll try to start with the wind in our sails, like last year
- Giorgia Bronzini
Yeah, 2020. In the opening team time trial Trek-Segafredo showed itself as the strongest and smoothest-working team. A series of top placings by Lizzie and Elisa followed, then another stage win, this time by the 2020 Italian champion, who also took 3rd place on the final podium.
“It was a bold performance, but we want to look further. We want to do better. We’re well aware that we will have many eyes on us and that the competition will be strong, especially Anna van der Breggen, the most experienced and strongest contender. The proximity to the Olympics may be a factor for the condition of all riders, but I think all the top riders will have enough good form to still be very competitive,” explained Teutenberg.
“We should expect a different Giro than in the past,” continued Bronzini. “It has a very varied course, with opportunities for all tastes and types of riders. After the team time trial there is a tough summit finish at Prato Nevoso, which will give a shake to the GC. Then, in order, we’ll have a mixed stage, a hilly time trial and an alternation of mixed and sprinter stages. The penultimate stage, the 9th (the designated Queen Stage) will finish on Monte Matajur and will decide the GC. The race will end with an undulating stage in Friuli arriving in Cormons.”
Elisa will be our point of reference for the overall classification, the pivot around which the team will act. Lucinda, who possess something extra at a tactical level, will have the role of road captain; she and Lizzie will be our cards to play in the mixed stages. Ruth will be the joker, the rider who can disrupt the plans and play her chances in the breakaway thanks to her speed. Tayler will be our super domestique with her experience and resilience. Last but not least Ellen who, after a strong performance at Lotto Belgium Tour, will be precious, both as a support and competitive in certain finishes
- Giorgia Bronzini