After the Stage 1 Team Time Trial, Boels-Dolmans started in a super-strong position, 19 seconds ahead of their nearest rival. But Stage 2 looked perfect for riders to try to disrupt that narrative – pretty flat and uneventful for the first 94km, and then, at 30km to go, a 2nd Category climb, followed by a difficult, technical descent that looked perfect for breakaways. Would anyone get away from Boels?
I’ve got highlights videos, then the results, and below that reports, photos and even more videos and media. If you don’t want spoilers, scroll down carefully! As always, I’ll add more as I see it – and there will be a lot more to come!
Claudia Koster (VéloConcept) and Nicole Hanselmann (Cervélo-Bigla) had been out in a long 2-woman break, but were caught around 10km before the climb started – and then it all kicked off. Lucinda Brand (Sunweb) had lead up the first part of the climb, but then Annemiek Van Vleuten (ORICA-Scott) had attacked towards the top of the climb, and only Van der Breggen and Longo Borghini could follow her – and once they were away, AvV and ELB worked well together to make it to the finish, while Van der Breggen sat on.
They had a 1:49 gap to 5 chasers at 5km to go, with a group of around 15 behind them…
1. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) ORICA-Scott, 3:11:51
2. Anna van der Breggn (Ned) Boels Dolmans, s.t.
3. Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Wiggle High5), s.t.
4. Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) WM3 Procycling, + 01:54
5. Megan Guarnier (USA) Boels Dolmans, s.t.
6. Shara Gillow (Aus) FDJ-Nouvelle Aquitaine-Futuroscope, s.t.
7. Amanda Spratt (Aus) ORICA-Scott, s.t.
8. Yevgeniya Vysotska (Ukr) Conceria Zabri-Fanini-Guerciotti, + 01:59
9. Lucinda Brand (Ned) Sunweb, + 02:37
10. Arlenis Sierra (Cub) Astana, s.t.
Van Vleuten has made no secret of her Giro ambitions, and was clearly delighted with her win. See her and Longo Borghini’s reactions in the ORICA and Wiggle High5 team videos:
And although Anna van der Breggen’s tactical approach didn’t give her the win, it did give her the maglia rosa:
1. Anna van der Breggn (Ned) Boels Dolmans, 3:26:32
2. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) ORICA-Scott, + 00:18
3. Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Wiggle High5), + 00:26
4. Megan Guarnier (USA) Boels Dolmans, + 02:00
5. Amanda Spratt (Aus) ORICA-Scott, + 02:22
6. Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) WM3 Procycling, + 02:37
7. Karol-Ann Canuel (Can) Boels-Dolmans, + 02:43
8. Lizzie Deignan (GBr) Boels-Dolmans, + 02:50
9. Lucinda Brand (Ned) Sunweb, + 03:02
10. Floortje Mackaij (Ned) Sunweb, s.t.
Tomorrow’s Stage 3 is only 100km long, and on paper looks like it’s one for the sprinters…. but this is the Giro, anything could happen! The stage will start at 12:15 CEST (11:15am UK BST, 6:15am USA EDT, 8:15pm Aussie AEST) and here’s my guide to following the action.
Photo galleries from ORICA-Scott and gorgeous photos from Vélofocus on their website, and on Canyon-SRAM‘s and Cylance’s site. Remember, if you, like me, love the Vélofocus work, you can contribute to the kickstarter for their 2017 women’s cycling album, which they talked about in this recent podcast interview.
VéloConcept team video, with Koster’s long break & Sprint Jersey podium:
One thing I really like about the Giro is the riders who are super-happy to be wearing their new National Champions’ kits. Here’s Chantal Blaak:
As always, huge thanks to my Patreon supporters who find me in my women’s cycling work. You can join them, from as little as £/€/$2 a month, over here.