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Elena Cecchini from CANYON//SRAM Racing turned around a disappointing stage one to take third place in a bunch sprint at Setmana Ciclista Valenciana. The stage was won by Lotta Lepistö (TSF) from Maria Confalonieri (VAL) with Cecchini just behind in third. The Italian now moves into fourth on the general classification, 15 seconds behind leader Ruth Winder (TFS).
“Today we raced much better and we were a unit throughout the entire race,” said Cecchini before the podium presentations.
“We really wanted to make sure that happened and it’s satisfying that as a group, every one of us could improve.”
“I don’t get the chance to be the leader when a bunch sprint is predicted so I must say I was both motivated and a little bit worried this morning, but I was happy to give it a go,” admitted Cecchini.
Surrounded by all teammates in the closing kilometres, the Italian came from behind, appearing only in the last 50 metres of the stage to take third.
“My teammates were awesome leading me towards the last kilometres so I could stay out of any trouble. The sprint was hard and a long one, but with a head wind predicted, I decided to start a bit later and I believe it was a good choice.”
“Today I want to give a special mention for Tiffany who protected me in the last 20km. I was focused solely on her wheel and I trusted her 100%. She’s the team captain here and she’s doing a great job,” said Cecchini.
The tour now heads to the queen stage with the finish coming just after the Category 1 climb Xorret de Catí. outside of Castalla. Cecchini’s team mate, Hannah Barnes predicted before the tour that tomorrow’s stage three is likely to be the deciding day for the GC contenders.
When: Stage 3, Saturday 22 February at 13:00CET
Where: 110km from La Nucia to Castalla
How: on Twitter with #SCV19 or livestream Stage 3 here