Today’s stage eight of the Giro Rosa Iccrea was another day for the breakaway, while Kasia Niewiadoma kept her third position on the general classification (GC). The stage was won solo by Elizabeth Banks (BIG) after she skipped away in the final kilometres from a ten-rider move that formed around halfway in the 133km course from Vittorio Veneto to Maniago, Italy.
CANYON//SRAM Racing’s Niewiadoma finished the stage in 15th position, keeping her +4:26 minutes from the GC leader Annemiek van Vleuten, +15 seconds behind second placed Anna van der Breggen (DLT), and with a one minute advantage over her next rival
“It was a harder than expected day. But we’re happy I’m still in position on the GC podium and we’re ready to squeeze everything we can to keep it tomorrow,” said Niewiadoma.
Road captain Tiffany Cromwell added, “It was a long day. The start went pretty quickly until the first classified climb. There were quite a few attempted breakaways which I tried to get amongst sometimes. When I wasn’t doing that, I looked after the girls if/when needed. But nothing was really sticking in the early part of the race.”
“My legs were alright again. Not as good as Thursday, but also not terrible. On the climb I was actually hanging in there quite well, for my strengths. But once it hit the really steep bit it was a bit too much, and I couldn’t stay with them. The race completely split there then I think it was groups all over the course. For me the rest of the day was pretty straight forward. I was happy to have a nice group to ride with today for the second half of the race. It was just about getting to the finish line then, as we weren’t coming back.”
“GC is still the same for us, so we’re happy with that. Kasia. Alena and Omer were up the front. So it was good Kasia had some support, especially in the second climb. We’re ready to battle for everything tomorrow,” added Cromwell.
Team Manager and Sports Director, Ronny Lauke, “The team performed well today Everyone went to their limits and beyond. After the first climb, we had Kasia only in the front, but Alena and Omer gave their all to get back and give Kasia the best support possible.”
The penultimate stage nine finishes with the Malga Montasio climb, with an average of over 8% and pitches up to 20%, that is tipped to be the last chance for a change on the GC.
“Tomorrow has a fairly easy profile until around 15km to go. It will be a tough battle, since the final climb can, and will, open some gaps. The GC victory is most likely gone, but the fight for the podium is the real challenge, with many in contention for it. Kasia has done brilliant so far and we hope and are confident she has the necessary portion of strength left to shine again tomorrow and secure the GC podium spot before we are heading into the final day,” added Lauke.