Rosa Round-up: Leah Kirchmann takes Giro Rosa’s first pink jersey on Canada Day

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With prologue specialist and two time prologue winner Annemiek van Vleuten (Orica-AIS) absent from this year’s Giro Rosa, the first stage win and first pink jersey in this ten day stage race were up for grabs in tonight’s prologue.

Consulting the top 5 of last year suggested a Rabo-Liv victory for today, with Roxane Knetemann, Lucinda Brand and Anna van der Breggen finishing second to fourth in 2015, and number 5 Ellen van Dijk (Boels-Dolmans) not taking to the start this year. But eventually it was another Dutch team that took the win in the Giro Rosa prologue.

137 riders rolled off the start ramp in Gaiarine, as Cylance Pro Cycling is the only team to start with five riders instead of six.

See the final start list of the 2016 Giro Rosa here.

With still some spots for the Olympics in Rio open, and others trying to finalise their preparation for the Olympic games, the 2016 Giro Rosa promises to be an exciting race with hard fought battles.

The battle for the first stage win and the first pink jersey in the 2016 edition was won by Leah Kirchmann (Liv-Plantur). It’s only suiting that a Canadian rider should take the first leader’s jersey in women’s cycling biggest tour on Canada Day.

2016 Giro Rosa prologue
1. Leah Kirchmann (Liv-Plantur)
2. Thalita de Jong (Rabo-Liv)
3. Anna van der Breggen (Rabo-Liv)
4. Megan Guarnier (Boels-Dolmans)
5. Roxane Knetemann (Rabo-Liv)

Check out the full results on the CyclingTips results page.

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Video

The jersey wearers after the prologue

Pink jersey/GC
1. Leah Kirchmann (Liv-Plantur)
2. Thalita de Jong (Rabo-Liv)
3. Anna van der Breggen (Rabo-Liv)

White youngster jersey
Kasia Niewiadoma (Rabo-Liv)

Purple sprinters jersey
Thalita de Jong (Rabo-Liv)

Green mountain jersey
Anna van der Breggen (Rabo-Liv)

Blue best Italian rider jersey
Barbara Guarischi (Canyon-SRAM)

What’s in store for the riders in stage 1

2016 Giro Rosa Stage 1

The riders have some time to adjust to the Italian temperatures and hilly routes with this relatively flat and short 104 kilometer stage tomorrow, that runs from Gaiarine to San Fior. One category-II-climb awaits the riders on the course. There are 7-5-3-2-1 points for the green jersey available at the top in Montaner.

Two traguarda volante, or: intermediate sprints, are on the program for the riders as well, which means 15-12-10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 points for the sprint classification, as well as 3-2-1 bonus seconds in the GC for the first three riders that cross the line.

While the mountain stages later in the week will probably prove decisive for the GC, the bonus seconds could get a rider in the pink jersey after stage 1, which would obviously be a welcome gift to any team.

Some twenty kilometers remain in the stage after the peloton passes the top in Montaner, which is an excellent distance for one rider or a group to try and form a break. It’s mostly dowhill from there though, so you need someone with good time trial skills or a group with all the big teams represented. It’s going to be interesting to see whether someone is able to prevent a bunch sprint in stage 1 of the 2016 Giro Rosa.

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Who is your favourite to win stage 1 in the 2016 Giro Rosa? 

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