CANYON//SRAM Racing’s Elena Cecchini sprinted to 6th place today on the opening stage of Setmana Ciclista Valenciana in Gandia, Spain. The peloton was hot on the heels of four breakaway riders, but was unable to catch the quartet, finishing just metres behind them in the sprint to the line. Cecchini was second in the bunch sprint, placing her sixth on the stage won by Ruth Winder (TFS).
“The peloton was quite nervous and stressed today, I think mostly because it was such a large peloton with 170 riders. Fortunately, in the end my teammates and I all arrived safe despite several crashes that happened,” said Cecchini.
“Christa (Riffel) and Hannah (Ludwig) did a very good job covering several attacks in the first part of the race. Between the two climbs a three-rider breakaway went and with another two riders going across in the descent it made a group of five,” commented Cecchini.
“The problem was that it was only our team and Sunweb chasing a 40 second gap. Alena (Amialiusik), Omer (Shapira) and Hannah (Barnes) were all there working. With the terrain of the final kilometres it wasn’t the best situation to be able to bring something back. In the end we missed to catch the leaders by just a few seconds. But a few seconds is sixth or winning,” lamented Cecchini.
“I’m disappointed because it was a good opportunity for me and sixth isn’t a special result at all. I’m feeling good and I’m very happy to be back racing but I can say it was a tough start into the season today. There’s only improvement possible and I’m confident it’s coming soon.”
When: Stage 2, Friday 21 February at 13:30CET
Where: 100km from Borriol to Vila-Real
How: on Twitter with #SCV19 or livestream Stage 2 here