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The 2022 season is so far a dream year for Lotte Kopecky. Beforehand, the 26-year-old Belgian champion hoped to win one classic, but in the meantime the Strade Bianche and the Tour of Flanders are already on her palmares. Paris-Roubaix is also still on her wish list. "But that doesn't have to be this year. If I can do something for my teammates, I'll do it with pleasure."
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How do you live up to Paris-Roubaix? "Relaxed. If I get in a situation to win the race, I will certainly not miss the opportunity. One day I want to add Paris-Roubaix to my palmares, but that doesn't have to be this year. With my wins in the Tour of Flanders and the Strade Bianche, the pressure is off. Of course I still have goals this year, but everything that comes with it is extra. That's a very nice feeling."
Does it bother you to be a top favourite for Paris-Roubaix? "No. In the run-up to the Tour of Flanders it was much more so. I hardly feel any pressure for Paris-Roubaix. I have a different view on it. Before, I was sometimes too tense in the run-up to a race and lost too much energy. This year was the first time I was so relaxed before the Tour of Flanders. With success."
How do you now look back on your transfer to Team SD Worx? "Beforehand, there was some scepticism. 'Are you going to get enough of a chance yourself?', people asked me. I always said that I had no problem with not being the only leading lady anymore. I knew it would be give and take. But if I could win one classic, who cares if you have to ride other races as a team? Partly thanks to this transfer, I have now won my absolute dream race. What gives the victory even more sparkle is that it really was a victory for the team as well."
Did you expect the team atmosphere to be so strong? "It did surprise me. We have only been teammates for four months. To go through fire and water for each other like the team did for me in the Ronde... I find that really special. If I get the chance to give something back on Saturday in Paris-Roubaix, I will do it with pleasure."
"The fact that I am no longer the only leading lady has also liberated me. If you have a bad day, it's not so bad. If you have teammates who can also finish, you turn the switch and ride in service."
"It is a race where the pace never stops. You also have to be mentally strong. Even if things go wrong, you can never give up."
How confident are you after your victory in the Tour of Flanders? "I already knew I had what it takes to win such a race, but this was the confirmation. I love racing in this team. When I saw how Team SD Worx rode in the Brabantse Pijl and how Demi Vollering won... I just sat in my chair with a smile. It clicks very well within the team. The way a former world champion like Chantal van den Broek-Blaak rode her heart out for me in the Ronde, is simply impressive. It clicks well, but such an action not only makes you get along even better, it makes you really grant it to each other."
What do you expect for Paris-Roubaix?
"It will be a very tough race. I have already looked at the wind, and it looks like it will be against us. It will be very nervous towards the first cobblestone and then the finish. I think a lot of teams will try to have strong riders in the early breakaway. Last year we saw with Lizzie Deignan that it was possible, although we had slanted tailwinds then."
What makes Paris-Roubaix the Hell of the North?
"It is a race where the pace never drops. There is a constant battle to get the best position towards the lanes. If you get side winds on the cobbled sections, it becomes absolutely terrible. Then you can't hide. This race is for riders who keep going and are mentally strong. In Paris-Roubaix you can never give up. Even if you have a puncture or you fall, you never know what bad luck they will have at the front. You need a lot of luck to win this race. But although it is an unpredictable race, there will never be an unfamous winner. When will I be happy at the Vélodrome on Saturday? When someone from Team SD Worx is showing off the cobble trophy."
In our preview, Christine Majerus and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak look ahead to why they are so eager to add Paris-Roubaix to their list of honours.
On Saturday the second edition of Paris-Roubaix will take place. In the Hell of the North, Team SD Worx once again has several cards to play. "Paris-Roubaix is very high on our wish list," say Christine Majerus and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak.
On a tough course in Wollongong, Annemiek van Vleuten took the world title. The Dutchwoman made it through with a late attack, after which Lotte Kopecky convincingly won the sprint for the silver medal. "This was THE chance of the world title for me. When Annemiek attacked, I hesitated one second too long. I lose gold there," Lotte Kopecky responded.
During the women's world championships there was a race in the race. There was also a world U23 title to be won. Niamh Fisher-Black finished twelfth in the elite results, as best U23, making her the first-ever U23 world champion. "It feels a bit bittersweet. On the one hand, I have the feeling that there might have been more in it in the elite. On the other hand, I did get to put on a world champion's jersey. With my family and friends around, that is a memory to cherish," said the 22-year-old New Zealand rider.
On Saturday 24 September 2022, Wollongong, Australia, will host the women's elite road world championships. Team SD Worx is well represented. "I am very happy with this tough course, but see myself as an outsider," says Lotte Kopecky (Belgium).
At the world championships individual time trial, Marlen Reusser won a bronze medal. The 30-year-old Swiss pulled out all the stops, but Ellen van Dijk proved untouchable. The Dutchwoman flew to her third world title over 34 kilometres, the second in a row. Home rider and outsider Grace Brown took silver. "I am happy with the bronze medal," said Marlen Reusser.
Marlen Reusser will start her world championships in Wollongong on Sunday with the individual time trial. The European champion will start as one of the favourites. After previously winning two silver medals, the 30-year-old Swiss has her sights set on the gold medal. "Although it will be anything but easy. It is a technical course and that makes the group of contenders bigger."
The last stage of the Ceratizit Challenge by la Vuelta was a bit like crit racing. The peloton completed 17 laps of 5,62 kilometres with a lot of curves. In the inevitable sprint Lotte Kopecky sprinted to second place. "Of course I hoped for the win, but Balsamo was simply faster," said an honest Lotte Kopecky.
Silvia Persico won the fourth stage of the Ceratizit Challenge by la Vuelta. Demi Vollering sprinted to second place and Lotte Kopecky finished fourth in the streets of Segovia. "It's a pity that we finished so close with two riders without taking the win, but we were where we needed to be during the day," said team leader Anna van der Breggen.
Only a few days after the Simac Ladies Tour the Ceratizit Challenge by la Vuelta (7-11 September) is on the programme. Team SD Worx will travel to the WorldTour race in Spain with Marlen Reusser, Lotte Kopecky, Anna Shackley, Niamh Fisher-Black, Blanka Vas and Demi Vollering. "It is a hard course, hence this competition serves as an ideal benchmark for the World Championships in Wollongong," said sporting director Danny Stam.
Team SD Worx has strengthened its ranks for the coming two seasons with the talented Dutch riders Mischa Bredewold and Femke Markus. The two riders follow Demi Vollering and Lorena Wiebes, who previously rode for Parkhotel Valkenburg and made the switch to Team SD Worx.
In the second stage of the Simac Ladies Tour, Lonneke Uneken finished third. In the stage from and to Ede, the 22-year-old Dutch rider finished behind Lorena Wiebes and Laura Tomasi. "Elena Cecchini placed me perfectly and I felt I had good legs, so I'm happy I was able to confirm that with a podium place," said Uneken, who takes over the youth leader’s jersey thanks to the bonification seconds.
Examinations showed that Christine Majerus has suffered a luxation of the clavicula-sternum as a result of the crash in the first stage of Simac Ladies Tour. She will undergo a surgery in the following days. Speedy recovery, Christine.
With Christine Majerus (2019) and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (2016, 2021), Team SD Worx has two former winners of the Simac Ladies Tour in its ranks. Together with Elena Cecchini, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio, Lonneke Uneken and Roxane Fournier, they will be looking for their third consecutive victory in the Dutch stage race at WorldTour level. "On the Dutch roads there is often chaos, so you have to ride as attentively as possible from the front," Chantal van den Broek-Blaak says.
For the GP of Plouay, Team SD Worx will field Elena Cecchini, Roxane Fournier, Anna Shackley, Blanka Vas and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak. Between 2017 and 2019, this team managed to win in Plouay three times in a row with Elizabeth Deignan (2017), Amy Pieters (2018) and Anna van der Breggen (2019). "This is a special race. The organisation often makes changes to the course, but it is always tough," says sports director Anna van der Breggen.
The European championships are over. The Team SD Worx riders were successful, and Marlen Reusser and Lotte Kopecky collected three European titles. Click here for an overview of the European championships for Team SD Worx riders.
Demi Vollering will not race in the European Championships on Sunday. The 25 years old Dutch rider is taking rest due to concussion symptoms after her crash in the Tour of Scandinavia.
Marlen Reusser has extended her European time trial title. The 30-year-old Swiss took off like a rocket and was the fastest over the 24 kilometre course with an average speed of 46.45 km per hour. At the finish line, she was 5.77 seconds faster than world champion Ellen van Dijk. Reusser thus became European time trial champion for the second consecutive time. "I'm very happy with this. I didn't have a great feeling during the race. That I can extend the title means a lot to me."
Marlen Reusser is experiencing a whimsical 2022. The European time trial champion showed her skills by winning the fourth stage of the Tour de France Femmes. However, she also had to deal with a lot of bad luck in France and literally fell off the road due to a concussion sustained in a crash. This disrupted her preparations for the European Championships, but that doesn't take away from Reusser's ambitions. "I'm going flat out for that second title in a row."
From 11 to 21 August, the European Championships will take place in Munich. Team SD Worx is also well represented in the national delegate selections. With Lonneke Uneken, the first rider of this team will be in action today. The Dutch rider will participate in the team pursuit. Here is an overview of who will be in action when.
After the Tour de France Femmes, the Tour of Scandinavia (formerly Battle of the North) is the next stage race. In six days the WorldTour peloton races through Denmark, Sweden and Norway, with something for everyone: sprinters, punchers and climbers. This is also reflected in the varied composition of Team SD Worx: Demi Vollering, Elena Cecchini, Blanka Vas, Niamh Fisher-Black, Anna Shackley and newcomer Sina Frei. "The fact that we can play so many different cards is an advantage," says Niamh Fisher-Black.
Sina Frei will be competing for the first time for Team SD Worx in the Tour of Scandinavia. Frei will thus combine her mountain bike career as a member of the 'Specialized Factory Team' with 'Team SD Worx' on the road. "In the past, our team already had a similar experience with Annika Langvad, who made the same combination. The collaboration with Specialized has been very good for years and everyone is reaping the benefits. This is a win-win situation," says sports manager Danny Stam.
Less than a week after the Tour de France Femmes, the Women's World Tour heads to Scandinavia for the team time trial + road race Vårgårda in Sweden (6 and 7 August). Team SD Worx will have a strong squad at the start: Demi Vollering, Elena Cecchini, Blanka Vas, Christine Majerus and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak. "With this selection we can compete for the prizes," says team manager Lars Boom.
A week after her fall in the Tour de France Femmes, Marlen is feeling a little better. The concussion she sustained in the fall is slowly easing, but the silver medallist of the Tokyo Olympics is still easily fatigued, suffers from headaches when exerting herself and can currently only train on the rollers in a light and darkened room.
Racing would be pointless and Marlen and Team SD Worx have therefore decided to cancel the planned start in Vargarda (6 and 7 August) and in the Tour of Scandinavia (9 - 14 August). Her next race is the European Championships in Munich, scheduled for 18 - 21 August.
"I am still recovering from my concussion. I wish my teammates all the success and fun in the Team Time Trial. Thank you for all the kind messages. I hope to compete again at the European Championships to defend my title in time trial."
Lorena Wiebes will be joining Team SD Worx next season. The 23-year old sprint star has signed a three year contract (2023-2025) with the Dutch team. Due to a clause in her contract with her current team, Team DSM, she could leave earlier if she received an improved offer from another team. Team DSM and Team SD Worx reached an agreement on the transfer after joint consultation.
Team SD Worx has finished the first Tour de France Femmes with a satisfied feeling. Demi Vollering competed for the overall win and finished convincingly in second place in the general classification. She also took home the polka dot jersey. "Team SD Worx achieved six top-three finishes in the eight stages, including one stage win with Marlen Reusser. This is a successful Tour for our team," emphasises sporting director Danny Stam.
Demi Vollering was the only one who could stay in the track of an unleashed Annemiek Van Vleuten on the Petit Ballon. The latter imposed a murderous pace, after which Vollering had to let her go a col further on at one kilometer from the top of the Platzerwasel. The 25-year old rider of Team SD Worx then rode to a second place in the stage and in the general classification. She also takes over the mountain jersey. "This was so tough, but I can also be satisfied. Annemiek was just stronger."
In Rosheim, Team SD Worx rode to a fourth place on the podium in this Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift. Lotte Kopecky was involved in a crash at about 22.5km from the finish, after which she sprinted to third place after Marianne Vos and Marta Bastianelli. "There was more in it for me. I got a bit boxed in, so I couldn't do my sprint fully," said the 26-year-old Belgian rider.
Marlen Reusser will not start in the seventh stage of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift. A hospital examination revealed that the 30-year-old Swiss rider suffered a concussion after her crash in the sixth stage at 22 kilometres from the finish. Rest is therefore necessary to recover. Reusser was an important link in the Team SD Worx team. Last Wednesday she won the stage to Saint-Dié-Des-Vosgues.
In the third stage of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift, the women of the classification were already battling it out in the hilly Champagne region. After the Côte de Mutigny, 15 kilometres from the finish, Team SD Worx was well represented at the front with Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio and Demi Vollering in a group of seven. In the descent of this climb Vollering collapsed due to gravel on the road, but she was able to rejoin the front quite quickly. In the end Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio sprinted to third place in Epernay. "This is encouraging for what is to come," she says.
The first stage of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift was a milestone for women's cycling. With the arrival on the Champs-Elysées, the sprinters had the perfect opportunity to win. Lotte Kopecky sprinted to third place after the inevitable Lorena Wiebes and Marianne Vos. "Still, I am satisfied, this gives confidence for what is to come."
Team SD Worx will ride the first stage of the Tour de France Femmes in Paris in a special shirt designed by Amy Pieters last year. In this way, the team shows that the cyclist, who is going through a long rehabilitation process due to a severe training accident, still is part of the team.
The arrival of the Tour de France Femmes is a milestone for women's cycling. Team SD Worx does not hide its ambition. "With Demi Vollering we are going for the overall win," says sports manager Danny Stam. "It would be an insult to our ambition if we did not aim for a Tour win. The green jersey with Lotte Kopecky is also a goal, if it fits into our plans for the final victory."
Na een moeilijke juni met het opgeven in de Women's Tour (na een val op haar hand) en het missen van de Tour de Suisse Women (omwille van covid), keert Marlen Reusser deze week terug naar de Women's World Tour. Zondag begint de tweevoudig Europees kampioene tijdrijden aan de Tour de France Femmes in Parijs. "Benieuwd naar hoe mijn vorm zal zijn in deze etappewedstrijd, maar de benen voelen alvast weer goed aan."
Team SD Worx will be at the start of the Giro Donne with a young, promising team: Blanka Vas, Niamh Fisher-Black, Lonneke Uneken, Elena Cecchini and Lotte Kopecky. Anna Shackley will miss the Giro due to a Covid infection, she will be replaced by Christine Majerus. Whereas the team has played a dominant role in the Giro in previous years, the aim now is mainly to win a stage and gain experience. "Everyone will get a chance to win a stage in this Giro. We can race with an open mind," says sport director Lars Boom.
Our rider Amy Pieters had just before Christmas an unfortunate crash during a training ride on the bicycle with the Dutch national selection in Spain. She suffered severe brain damage and fell into a coma. In Spain she was immediately operated and we feared for her life. The first weeks have been very difficult for her and her loved ones. But thankfully Amy is still here!
Team SD Worx has signed a partnership with Brides-les-Bains. The charming town in the French Alps is known for its thermal baths and is an ideal base for an altitude training session. Demi Vollering, Lotte Kopecky, Lonneke Uneken, Niamh Fisher-Black, Blanka Vas and Anna Shackley will prepare themselves here for the Giro Donne and Tour de France Femmes. The team stays here in Les 3 Vallées at an altitude of over 2000 metres.
In the Women's Tour, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio reenters competition after her crash in Durango-Durango, in which she broke a rib and sprained her coccyx. The British Tour is one of Moolman-Pasio's favorite races. "This was the first big stage race in women's cycling. Added to that is the fact that I have British roots. So I want to make no secret of the fact that I am aiming for the overall victory."
Atlanta - June 2nd, 2022 — Supersapiens and Team SD Worx are proud to announce a 2022 race season partnership. With Abbott’s Libre Sense Glucose Sport Biosensor, Supersapiens delivers innovative insights to help Team SD Worx optimize their glucose levels for training and recovery. The Dutch squad closed out the 2021 season as the world’s number one team with victories throughout the Classics and a podium sweep at the Giro d’Italia Donne. This partnership proves they’re not complacent and are proactively seeking every advantage to maintain that title.
In RideLondon, Christine Majerus, Elena Cecchini, Chantal van den Broek-Blaak and Marlen Reusser are back to racing after an altitude training. "Everything went according to plan, I was able to train well, so I'm looking forward to the second part of the season," says Marlen Reusser.
The Vuelta a Burgos ended as it started for Team SD Worx: with a victory. After the fourth stage was coloured by Team SD Worx, Demi Vollering finished the job. The new leader of the WorldTour ranking triumphed on the steep summit of Lagunas de Neila. "This was terribly difficult," she said.
Lotte Kopecky returned to competition in the Vuelta a Burgos after an altitude training and a week of rest. The Belgian champion went for a stage win and was immediately successful. In Aranda De Duero she gave everyone the slip and won supremely in the sprint. "This gives confidence for what's to come."
After an extremely successful Itzulia, the Vuelta a Burgos is Team SD Worx' second Spanish WorldTour stage race. Lotte Kopecky returns to competition after an altitude training course in Denia. "I'm not starting to fill the peloton, I'm hoping for a stage win," says the number one in the UCI individual ranking.
Demi Vollering did a great job last weekend by winning all three stages in Itzulia Women. However, she won't be able to enjoy it for long, as a new WorldTour race is scheduled for Tuesday: Durango-Durango Emakumeen Saria. "I don't really realise yet that I have done something very special. But I have no time to dwell on it. After all, we are going for four victories in a row," says Demi Vollering. Although she looks back on her special three days in an interview.
Three times is a charm. Demi Vollering made cycling history by winning all three stages in the first ever Itzulia Women. "Itzulia is a great race. Winning three stages in a row, that's insane."
A bis number for Demi Vollering and Team SD Worx in Itzulia Women! After controlling the race for a whole day and being alert at the front, Vollering slipped into the decisive breakaway. On the steep final meters she made the difference for the second day in a row. With a devastating acceleration, the 25-year-old Dutch rider rode to her second World Tour victory in as many days. She also strengthened her leading position in the general classification of Itzulia Women. "This was the perfect day," she said.
Itzulia Women heralded the start of the second part of the season. The multi-day stage race began with a difficult opening stage, which was convincingly won by Demi Vollering. The Dutch rider was always to be seen at the front in the decisive moments of the race. She finished it off in an uphill sprint after a breakaway with Pauliena Rooijakkers and Kristen Faulkner. "This finish suited me, this gives a very good feeling," Vollering said in an initial reaction.
Leading European payroll and HR services provider SD Worx has extended its contract as main sponsor of the best women's team in the UCI rankings until the end of 2026. "We want to pull out all the stops to maintain the leading position of Team SD Worx. In addition, by extending our sponsorship we want to help facilitate the further development of women's cycling in general", says CEO Kobe Verdonck.
The condition of Amy Pieters has changed. There is consciousness. This means that she can communicate slightly non-verbally. Amy recognizes people, understands what is being said and is able to carry out more and more assignments.
Team SD Worx finished the spring season with fifteen podium finishes, five of which were victories. In Liège-Bastogne-Liège Demi Vollering and Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio finished in third and fourth place, just like in the Flèche Wallonne. Annemiek van Vleuten proved to be the strongest and finished solo. "We couldn't close the gap on the Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons. Unfortunately I missed some freshness," Demi Vollering said honestly afterwards.
Team SD Worx will be at the start of Liège-Bastogne-Liège with a clear goal: to defend last year's victory. On Friday the team explored the last 70 kilometres of the race, which has long been indicated in Demi Vollering's agenda. "It is my favourite race. After my victory last year, I now hope to triumph for the second year in a row."
In the Flèche Wallonne Demi Vollering signed for Team SD Worx's 14th podium spot this season. The team always had control of the race in the first Ardennes classic. Despite the redrawn finale, the decision fell once again on the final climb of the Mur de Huy. There Marta Cavalli eventually won the duel with Annemiek van Vleuten. Demi Vollering finished third ten seconds later. "This was a really tough race, I'm completely empty," was Vollering's first reaction.
Who says Flèche Wallonne, mentions Anna van der Breggen in one breath. The former Olympic and world champion has won the Flèche Wallonne seven times in a row. On Wednesday 20 April 2022, someone else will claim the top step of the podium. "We want to keep the Flèche Wallone within the team," Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio said. "Because we are climbing the Mur de Huy and the Mur de Cherave three times for the first time, I expect a more open race."
"When you feel that there was more in it, losing hurts," said sports manager Danny Stam at the edge of the cycling track. Lotte Kopecky's second place in Paris-Roubaix is a great result. Especially since Team SD Worx again played a dominant role in the final. However, the team was not satisfied with the umpteenth nice, short result of the year.
On Saturday the second edition of Paris-Roubaix will take place. In the Hell of the North, Team SD Worx once again has several cards to play. "Paris-Roubaix is very high on our wish list," say Christine Majerus and Chantal van den Broek-Blaak.
Team SD Worx strikes again. In a rainy and difficult Brabantse Pijl it was Demi Vollering who triumphed. With 30km to go, Vollering went on the attack with Pauliena Rooijakkers. With an ultimate acceleration on the Moskesstraat, Vollering also threw her only remaining competitor overboard. After a solo of about ten kilometres, Vollering triumphed, opening her account this season. "It's a really good feeling to have our first win."
Team SD Worx coloured the Amstel Gold Race, but due to a surprising attack by Marta Cavalli on the spur of the Cauberg 1.7 kilometres from the finish, Demi Vollering had to settle for second place for the second year in a row. "Just at that moment Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio and I were looking at each other for a second. Of course it's hard not to win again, but the podium is better than nothing," said the Dutchwoman after the finish.
After their convincing win in the Tour of Flanders, Team SD Worx heads for the Amstel Gold Race with confidence. Blanka Kata Vas will be back in competition after a short break. With the return of Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio and Niamh Fisher-Black, Team SD Worx seems ready for the battle on the slopes. "The Amstel Gold Race is simply a very tough race. That plays into our hands," says Chantal van den Broek-Blaak.
After the Strade Bianche, Lotte Kopecky won her second major victory in less than a month with the Tour of Flanders. The Belgian champion defeated Annemiek van Vleuten in Oudenaarde and thus has the Tour of Flanders, her dream race and first monument, in her pocket. The 26-year-old rider worked coolly through a sophisticated team plan, with a starring role for Chantal van de Broek-Blaak, who completed the podium. "I don't realise it yet. I just won the race of my dreams," Kopecky said in a first reaction.
On Thursday, Team SD Worx explored the final 95 kilometres of the Tour of Flanders. After all, the addition of the Koppenberg changed the course. "This recon was definitely useful. The race just seems to get better," said Chantal van de Broek-Blaak. Watch some images of our reconnaissance here.
Team SD Worx and Maurten officially join forces, but our riders have already successfully used some of Maurten's groundbreaking prototypes. We are proud to announce our cooperation with the Swedish sports nutrition company.
Team SD Worx explored the final 95 kilometres of the Tour of Flanders on Thursday. New in this edition is the Koppenberg. For the first time, the women's peloton traverses the steep Flemish cobbled slope in a race. "On the Koppenberg you cannot win the Ronde, but you can lose the race there," is the conclusion within Team SD Worx.
In Gent-Wevelgem, just like in the Trofeo Alfredo Binda and Brugge-De Panne, Team SD Worx had to be satisfied with a fourth place. The race was again hard fought, each time with attacks from the Team SD Worx camp, but in the end it was a sprint for the victory. Lotte Kopecky fell just short of the podium and finished after Elisa Balsamo, Marianne Vos and Maria Confalonieri. "I came into the wind too early and lacked speed," said the Belgian champion.
With Gent-Wevelgem, Team SD Worx is cutting the final straight for the Tour of Flanders. The race at Flanders Field lends itself to being hard and selective, a favourite technique of Team SD Worx. "Nokere Koerse and Brugge-De Panne confirmed my good form. Despite a tough training week, the legs were really good. I am going to Gent-Wevelgem with confidence," Lotte Kopecky said.
Brugge - De Panne had a chaotic finale with a massive crash 15km from the end. Lonneke Uneken, the spearhead of Team SD Worx in the fourth WorldTour race of the year, was held up by this, so it took her energy to get back in the right position for the sprint. "Sad that I miss the podium," the 22-year-old Dutch rider said afterwards.
With three victories and eight podium places, Team SD Worx had a strong first racing month. Bruges-De Panne offers a new opportunity for the number one team in the WorldTour ranking. The squad hopes for wind, but with Lotte Kopecky and Lonneke Uneken they also have fast legs for the sprint. "We have a strong selection at the start. It would be nice to have windy conditions, but even without we will be competing for the podium," said sports manager Danny Stam.
Team SD Worx returned from the Trofeo Binda with a good feeling. In the third WorldTour race of the year, Chantal van den Broek-Blaak and Elena Cecchini finished fourth and fifth respectively. While world champion Elisa Bolsamo claimed victory in her home country, the team is disappointed that it was unable to catch the sprinters on the final lap.
With 3 wins and a total of 8 top-3 places, Team SD Worx has not missed its start. With the Trofeo Binda, the third Worldtour race of the season is coming up. After earlier wins in the Strade Bianche and a podium finish in Drenthe, SD Worx starts with confidence in Italy. "This is one of my big goals. We will try to dominate the race and make it as hard as possible," said Elena Cecchini.
In the Ronde van Drenthe Team SD Worx once again put in a strong performance, but also had some bad luck. No less than five flat tires and a worn out chain caused the team to lose energy early on, nevertheless the final was once again colored by Team SD Worx. Lotte Kopecky - who punctured herself about 15 kilometers from the line - finished third in the sprint. "Unfortunately I lost the right wheel in the sprint," said the Belgian champion.
After Lotte Kopecky's win in a spectacular Strade Bianche, the Women's WorldTour peloton heads to Drenthe. In the northern part of the Netherlands, a lot of wind, twists and turns, mossy cobblestones and the VAM mountain await the riders. "We will try to defend our number one position in the WorldTour ranking," said Christine Majerus.
Third time’s a charm. Christine Majerus pulled off a nice win in Drentse Acht van Westerveld. After a old style race without communication, the Luxembourgian champion used her experience to finish off and take the third win of the season. “We were up front all the time, which is the old style of racing. It suits me well.”
Lotte Kopecky wins the Strade Bianche. The Belgian champion rules the Piazza Del Campo and defeats Annemiek Van Vleuten in a direct duel. Good for a back-to-back win for Team SD Worx. Kopecky follows Van de Broek-Blaak on the list of winners of the Strade Bianche, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio shows the supremacy of Team SD Worx by completing the podium. "What a perfect day. I can hardly believe it," Lotte Kopecky said.
Team SD Worx heads to the Strade Bianche with confidence, trying to defend last year's win by Chantal van de Broek-Blaak. After the strong team performance in the opening weekend, sporting director Danny Stam looks ahead with confidence. "We have already shown that the form is good.
The stage was locked in for a long time, as the wind was not strong enough to create fans, but after the first passage of the local lap the peloton broke into pieces. Team SD Worx did not miss the train and was fully in front. The peloton would sprint for the win. Elena Cecchini provided a clever lead out and Lonneke Uneken finished it off. The first win of the season is a special one. "After a very difficult period, I'm very happy about this," Lonneke Uneken said. "This victory is for Amy. I hope it can give her and her family some strength."
The first Worldtour race is just around the corner with Strade Bianche. After an extremely successful 2021, expectations for Team SD Worx are high. Last year many important races were won and the season ended in a convincing first place in the UCI ranking. However, last winter multiple winner Anna van der Breggen traded in her bike for the team car. Nevertheless, Team SD Worx will not start the race dismantled. "Certainly not, we are very strong across the board. This season you won't be able to get around us either," assures sporting director Danny Stam.
The opening weekend is over. Team SD Worx hasn't won yet, but was at the forefront in both the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and the Omloop van het Hageland. In Tielt-Winge, Elena Cecchini sprinted to fourth place after another strong team performance. "Unfortunately I couldn't keep up with Marta Bastianelli," she said.
Team SD Worx started the season with a podium finish in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad for Demi Vollering. The 25-year-old Dutch rider sprinted for victory alongside Annemiek Van Vleuten, but had to settle for second place. The team gave a strong performance, which augurs well for the future.
After Demi Vollering's second place in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Team SD Worx will be looking for their first win of the season in the Omloop van het Hageland. It will do so with the following selection: Chantal van den Broek-Blaak, Roxane Fournier, Lotte Kopecky, Lonneke Uneken, Elena Cecchini and Marlen Reusser. Sportive directors are Lars Boom and Anna van der Breggen.
With the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Team SD Worx officially kicks off its new cycling season. The course has been redesigned, with the riders doing the same last 55 kilometres as the men. That does not change anything about the ambitions: Team SD Worx is looking for a second consecutive victory. Anna van der Breggen - who won last year's opening race - will accompany her teammates in the team car.
Christine Majerus won’t ride Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Omloop van het Hageland. “I was supposed to kick of my road season this weekend with Nieuwsblad and Hageland, but unfortunately I have been in close contact at home.
Team SD Worx presented itself to the general public on Wednesday, February 2 at 3 pm. Revisit the full show here.
Chantal van den Broek-Blaak has reconsidered her earlier decision to stop cycling after the spring of 2022. The 32-year-old former world champion has now decided that she will continue as a rider until the end of 2024. She did also indicate that she may have to take a break at some point as she is planning to have children. The Team SD Worx management welcomes Blaak's proposal and is looking forward to keeping her on the team.
Demi Vollering's contract with Team SD Worx has been renegotiated and extended until the end of 2024. Vollering's victories in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, La Course and the Women's Tour last season have shown that she is one of the best cyclists in the peloton.
Rider Amy Pieters is still being treated at a Dutch hospital after a fall during a training session in Spain right before Christmas several weeks ago. The Pieters family has received many questions about her condition, but for now they can report little change and they see the situation as uncertain. The cyclist is breathing independently, but is currently still unconscious.
Team SD Worx heeft het contract met Niamh Fisher-Black verlengd tot eind 2024. Daarmee heeft de ploeg een van de grootste talenten uit het vrouwenpeloton voor de komende drie seizoenen weten vast te leggen. De 21-jarige Nieuw-Zeelandse won in 2021, haar debuutjaar in de kleuren van Team SD Worx, het jongerenklassement in de WorldTour.
For Team SD Worx it was a great challenge, in cooperation with Specialized, to make the 2022 jersey even more beautiful than the one with which SD Worx debuted in the women's peloton in 2021 as main sponsor. In January 2021, the Team SD Worx shirt was crowned the most beautiful in the peloton by 85% of GCN Racing's followers.
Insurance company Yuzzu becomes an important sponsor of Team SD Worx as from next season. The Belgian company signed a contract with the best women’s team in the world for two years (2022-2023) with an option for an extra year (2024). “The arrival of Yuzzu enforces our ambition to remain the number one team in the world”, emphasizes team manager Erwin Janssen.
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