CANYON//SRAM Racing travel to the Netherlands this weekend when the team races Drentse Acht van Westerveld on Friday 9 March and Ronde van Drenthe on Sunday 11 March. The team will line up for both races with a roster of Alice Barnes, Tiffany Cromwell, Lisa Klein, Christa Riffel, Alexis Ryan and Trixi Worrack.
Either crosswind havoc or two successive ascents of the man-made VAMberg climb at the mid-point of the race have the greatest potential to split the peloton and make the race deciding moves in Friday’s Drentse Acht van Westerveld.
“We’ve got a nice line up for both races and after Alexis getting second in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad then we can go into these two Dutch races with confidence,” said Barnes.
Friday’s 141km race will be a curtain-raiser for the next round of the UCI Women’s WorldTour, the 157km Ronde van Drenthe based around the city of Hoogeveen.
“I’ve only ever raced Ronde van Drenthe once which was last year. I got a top ten which was my first really good result and set me up for the rest of the season so I’m looking forward to going back. It’s a typical flat Dutch race aside from the VAMberg which we go up four times this year. That’s the toughest part of the race. It’s a really tight left-hand turn into the climb and positioning is important,” added Barnes.
With rain yet relatively mild conditions predicted for Sunday, Barnes suggests the weather can still have a significant impact on the race. “It’s a race that is very much weather dependent. If there’s strong crosswinds it will split a lot, which was the main factor in last year’s race, even more so than the early cobblestone sections. We have to be prepared for everything.”
Drentse Acht van Westerveld starts at 13:00 CET, while Ronde van Drenthe starts at 10:45 CET on Sunday and can be followed with #UCIWWT.