A shining silver medal for Longo Borghini at Strade Bianche

One week after her third place at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Elisa is once more on the podium at Strade Bianche after a strong race

Italian champion Elisa Longo Borghini confirmed her form and, for the second weekend in a row, showed that she is back among the leading riders of the peloton. Seven days ago she was smiling on the third step of the podium in Belgium, and today, at the Strade Bianche, she jumps up to the second step.

Longo Borghini arrived at the foot of the climb in Via Santa Caterina, 700 meters to the finish line, with Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) on her wheel and 20 seconds ahead of the chasing group. The pair made the decisive move at 10km to go, after the group of the favorites had gradually been thinned out after an aggressive race.


On the last climb, the world champion made her move, attacking with full power to put Longo Borghini in difficulty, allowing her to cross the finish line first. In Piazza del Campo, Elisa was tasted the bittersweet emotion of a second place. Vollering (SD Worx) completed the podium, while Shirin Van Anrooij demonstrated her growth, finishing 5th.

The fifth podium of Longo Borghini at Strade Bianche (a race she won in 2017 and in which she has never finished outside the top ten) came after a very strong individual and team performance. The result of the Italian Champion capped off an impressive display of the collective strength of Lidl-Trek: the breakaway of Lizzie Deignan, the tenacity of Van Anrooij, the valuable work by Spratt, Hanson and Chapman. Once again today, Lidl-Trek demonstrated its character and its ability to make teamwork its best weapon.


Elisa's words

We always race to win, that’s our approach to race. We don’t race for the podium, but second is the best I could do today. In the end, the strongest won, but we can be satisfied for what we did and how we raced. My second place is the icing on the cake, but we were really protagonists as a team. Everyone gave it all and in Siena Shirin completed our good day with 5th place. Thanks to the girls that allowed me to be on the podium and for believing in me as a leader in this hard race. I never take this for granted.

I think we took our responsibility and we raced aggressively. The same I did when I followed the attack of Lotte. I knew it would have been hard with her. Then, everyone has their own tactic to play. That’s cycling, but let’s give to Lotte what she deserves. She had the strongest legs.


The finale was very exciting and really hectic. Our competitors knew that our team is strong and they tried to isolate us. I knew by instinct that Lotte’s move was the right one, I was feeling it and I didn’t hesitate to follow. On the final climb in Via Santa Caterina, I did my best to answer to her attack but… yeah, she was strong and my legs were a bit empty.

I can’t say I was expecting this second place, but I’m here and I want to enjoy it. The podium last week at Opening Weekend gave me lots of confidence, it was a great boost for Strade Bianche. I feel better than expected, after a winter that was more like a rebuilding than a preparation. Now I feel good, but I’m still not at the top. Then, the morale is really high so really can’t wait to race again.