Trek-Segafredo didn’t let the disappointment of losing the leader’s jersey and dropping out of the general classification on stage three affect their performance the final day as Lotta Lepistö stormed to her second victory in the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana on Sunday.
Lepistö took the win ahead of Elena Cecchini (Canyon SRAM Racing) and Coryn Rivera (Team Sunweb). Clara Koppenburg (WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling) meanwhile hung on to her leader’s jersey to win the race overall, 41″ ahead of Soraya Paladin (Alé Cipollini) with Ashleigh Moolman Ashleigh (CCC – Liv) in third, a further 7″ down.
“I am super happy with the win. It was a great Tour for us – three wins out of four – we are all really, really happy. Again, the teamwork was perfect today, and I could not do it without these girls working so hard, today and all week!” said Lepistö.
It was an expected sprint stage, and with the general classification all but settled, Trek-Segafredo went on the hunt for another win. It may have been a straightforward stage on paper, but out on the road, it took a team effort for Lepistö.
“There were some climbs today, and I got a little bit dropped, by half a minute, but then Anna (Plichta) brought me back,” explained Lepistö. “There was also a lot of attacks today; I think the other teams had nothing to lose, so it was quite a hectic race. Unfortunately, Ruth (Winder) crashed with five kilometres to go, so we were there only with four in the end, but the leadout was perfect. I started a little bit early because after the final corner there was only 100m to the finish. I started, and then one rider passed me in the corner, but I could still pass her on the finish stretch.”
Lepistö capped off the strong teamwork by Trek-Segafredo, down to four riders in the finale after a mechanical and late crashes.
“Sadly, we had an issue with Audrey (Cordon-Ragot) who had a mechanical. We were behind a barrage, and the neutral service did not stop so we lost her quite early on,” clarified director Giorgia Bronzini. “And in the last 10kms were had two crashes with Anna and Ruth – Anna was able to get back but Ruth unfortunately not. But the rest of the team did an amazing job for Lotta, who just had to follow them and do her best sprint. I am really, really super proud. It was a positive week. What more can I say? For my first experience as a director, I could not ask more than this!”