Women’s Cycling Weekly: Issue 24

Emma Cecilie Norsgaard wins 2nd and last stage in the yellow jersey as leader in the GC of Ceratizit Festival Elsy Jacobs.

by Amy Jones

photography by @rhode.photo


Hello! Welcome to Women’s Cycling Weekly issue 24 🚴‍♀️

No broken down cars this time but instead it’s been one of those weeks where my brain feels like it’s juddering to a halt at about 3pm every day — can I call a tow truck for that and do you reckon my insurance will cover it? 

Although there’s lots of racing happening with Elsy Jacobs last week and Setmana Ciclista Valenciana this week it still feels like we’re in some kind of liminal space as we wait for the next round of the WWT. Maybe that’s exacerbated by the deafening fanfare of the Giro d’Italia that’s drowning out almost everything else in the cycling world this week (a good time to remind ourselves about Alfonsina Strada). But fear not WCW reader, this is a Giro-free corner of cycling content.

You know the drill by now, thanks to CyclingTips for supporting WCW and women’s cycling! If you’re reading on CT and you like emails (nice ones only!) then you can subscribe to WCW and get the whole thing in your inbox as well.

News 📰

  • Some news of unconfirmed validity regarding the women’s Tour de France — a crumb, if you will, from our overlords at ASO. 
  • In other crumb-shaped news, a website has popped up containing apparent details of the 2021 Giro Rosa, including a promise of 30 minutes of daily live coverage. There has been no confirmation as to whether it’s official. But I’m reporting it anyway, ok? 
  • Ayesha McGowan has announced the recipients of her Thee Abundance Mini-Grant. The nine chosen riders will receive support while racing the Tour of America’s Dairyland in June. The grant recipients are, Gabriella Allong, Rachel Parker, Guarina Lopez, Bijou Vaultz, Carissa Yao, Valeria Diaz, Ajoa Abrokwa, Nicole Young, and Uhllana Woods. Find out more via McGowan’s website, here
  • The Cyclists’ Alliance have officially launched their mentorship programme.
  • If you like virtual riding then you might be interested in the VoxTour organised by Voxwomen which began this week and runs until the 16th May. 
  • If you’re UK-based then maybe you fancy helping more women get on bikes? British Cycling’s Breeze are looking for ride leaders.

Results 🏆

  • Emma Norsgaard took her first win for Movistar at Festival Elsy Jacobs 1.Pro last weekend in emphatic style. The 21-year-old Danish rider won both road stages — and subsequently the GC — after fellow sprinter Lorena Wiebes (DSM) crashed out of the first stage after winning the prologue. Wiebes’s teammate Leah Kirchmann took second and Maria Giulia Confalonieri of Ceratizit-WNT third. If you fancy watching a recap then you can find all of the stages on YouTube: Stage 1 videoStage 2 videoStage 3 video.
  • The Setmana Ciclista Valenciana 2.1 is here again to remind me of my glory days. Yesterday’s first stage was won by none other than Annemiek van Vleuten who took a solo victory despite crashing on a descent. Her two-up break companion Mavi Garcia (Ale BTC Ljubljana) came second after being dropped on an earlier climb and van Vleuten’s teammate Katrine Aalerud sprinted to third from a small group. View a short recap video here

    Van Vleuten retains the GC lead by 2’10” over Mavi Garcia after stage two. Kristabel Doebel-Hickok of Rally Cycling spent a large portion of the final 30km leading the race solo with a gap — which stretched to over two minutes at one point — but the American was eventually brought back and the stage culminated in a sprint finish won by Sandra Alonso of Bizkaia Durango with Sheyla Gutierrez of Movistar in second and Arianna Fidanza of Team BikeExchange in third.

    Omer Shapira of Canyon//SRAM leads both the QOM and sprint classifications. 
  • The first MTB XC World Cup of the season kicked off today in Albstadt, Germany World Champion Pauline Ferrand Prevot won the short track race this afternoon with Linda Indergand second and Annie Last in third.

Upcoming Races 📅

  • Setmana Ciclista Valenciana 2.1 continues this weekend with the final two stages. Tomorrow’s stage is from Sagunt – València (108km) starting at 13:00 CET and the final stage on Sunday traverses Finestrat – Alacant (114km) starting at 12:00 CET. Race preview here. Live coverage via À Punt Media here
  • The MTB World Cup in Albstadt culminates on Sunday with the XC race which begins at 13:00 CET. The race will be shown live on Red Bull TV. 
  • Next week, the Emakumeen Nafarroako and Navarra Classic 1.1 races mark the beginning of two weeks of racing in the region on Thursday 13th and Friday 14th May. Last year, the two races were the first women’s events after the Coronavirus lockdown and I popped over to see what the craic was.

Read 🗞️

Watch 📺

I’m not crying, you’re crying:

Listen 🎧

As you know, it’s the law for me to plug the Freewheeling Podcast on here. Not just because they let me come on it and go off on tangents and rants but also because it’s a bloody good podcast with or without my dulcet tones because Abby and Loren know their shit. This week is a long one but it features a super interesting interview with race organiser Scott Sunderland and an in-depth look at whether the past is holding back the future for cycling. 

Elsewhere in the category labelled: ‘things to plug into your brain via your ears’ the bank holiday Monday edition of BBC Woman’s Hour was dedicated entirely to cycling and getting more women on bikes!

Finally, this month’s edition of The Cycling Podcast Féminin came out this week featuring a segment ranking teams’ performances throughout the classics as well as interviews with Anna Shackley and Riejanne Markus — who has a YouTube channel, who knew?

Shop front of the week

Unlikely to become a regular segment. Courtesy of Bella Mackie on Insta:

Feel Good Friday 🥰

A truly integrated team, love to see it.

That’s All 👋

Thanks for reading Women’s Cycling Weekly!

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Have a great weekend!

Until next time,

Amy x

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