The team’s 2023 European road season has been kicked-off in Spain, with the team putting in strong performances at the Women’s Cycling Pro Costa de Almería on the 29th January and at the Vuelta CV Feminas on the 5th of February.
Time to find those climbing legs!
The race in Almería consisted of a 144km route with 1,600m of climbing, with two long climbs breaking up the peloton into three groups. The leading group proved to have the strongest climbing legs with 21 riders breaking away. Sigrid crossed the line in 14th place in the winning group, with India finishing in the second group between the first and the peloton.
Sports Director Tone Lima is satisfied with the result as this was the first race for all riders who started and the first race for India Grangier with Coop – Hitec Products.
“She adapted well to the team environment and communicated well in the race, there is of course still room for improvement but I think this is a good start to the season.”
Strong race from Sigrid Haugset in Valencia
In contrast to many expectations for the 2023 edition, the profile included much more climbing than the previous edition which ended in a mass sprint. With a course of just over 90km’s but with 1,100m, it proved to be a very hard and hot day out on the bike for the riders.
Haugset crashed at a critical point in the race, just before the last long climb before the finish. She started the 7.5km climb in the convoy and at the halfway mark she had already made her way to the second group, even on a broken bike. At the top of the climb, it was time for a bike change for the downhill towards the finish. At this point, the lead group of 10 had already gotten away, and the small groups that formed on the climb had all come back together to form a peloton of around 60 riders, leaving the fight for 11th place. Haugset decided to attack with 5km to go and found herself with a breakaway companion. She crossed the line in a respectable 12th place, escaping the peloton in the final kilometres. A very strong performance by the 23 year-old Norwegian.
I think this result is very promising for the season ahead. – Sports Director Tone Lima.
The team will race again this Saturday in the Clasica de Almería, bringing the Spanish race/training block to an end.