Annemiek van Vleuten has stated she was “not sturdy sufficient uphill” to drop her competitors on the third stage of the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana on Saturday, settling for third in a three-up dash in Altea.
After going clear with Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (AG Insurance coverage-Soudal Fast-Step) and Amanda Spratt) on the 15km Tudons climb, Van Vleuten did not shake off both rider on the next climb and descent, that means the three contested the flat end as a dash, which Moolman Pasio received.
“Was not sturdy sufficient at this time to drop Ashleigh and Amanda Spratt uphill,” Van Vleuten wrote (opens in new tab) in a tweet after the stage on which many could have been anticipating one of many world champion’s signature solo strikes.
On paper, the queen stage’s profile seemed excellent for the long-range assault we’ve got develop into accustomed to seeing from Annemiek van Vleuten. After a hilly begin to the stage, the ultimate 50km featured two back-to-back huge climbs.
Going into the Alto Tudons, it seemed as if Movistar had been establishing the Dutchwoman for an assault, their prepare essentially the most organised within the early ramps. Nevertheless, an assault didn’t instantly materialise, with Movistar changed by the efforts of Gaia Realini for Trek-Segafredo and Amanda Spratt.
When Van Vleuten did lastly make her inevitable transfer just some kilometres from the highest, she took along with her Moolman Pasio and Spratt, in addition to Jumbo Visma’s Kim Cadzow briefly, and the group caught the breakaway excessive of the climb.
Going into the descent and the next climb, although, it appeared that Van Vleuten, Moolman Pasio and Spratt weren’t racing at full pelt, exemplified by the truth that dropped breakaway riders Elise Uijen (Workforce DSM) and Mireia Benito (AG Insurance coverage-Soudal-QuickStep) had been in a position to rejoin the leaders on a couple of event.
Ultimately, the breakaway riders had been definitively dropped, however with no extra climbing, Van Vleuten had no extra alternatives to launch and it got here all the way down to a dash on the flat run-in to the road.
“Acquired a bit stunned by the ultimate roundabout,” Van Vleuten stated of the dash, which noticed her and winner Moolman Pasio take reverse sides of a roundabout within the last kilometre, presumably influencing the eventual final result of the dash.
Sunday’s last stage has considerably much less climbing than stage 3, and should not be a day for the pure climbers, however that is to not say a Van Vleuten win is unattainable. With a 6.7km climb at 4.3% within the final 20km, she could have another likelihood to shake off the quicker riders and take a win within the first race of her last season.
“Tomorrow one other battle developing!” Van Vleuten signed off her tweet, clearly not writing herself off for stage 4 both.