Annemiek van Vleuten, the world champion from Movistar, clinched victory in the sixth stage of the 2023 Giro d’Italia Donne. This came after a 102-kilometre ride ending on a hill in Canelli and helped her maintain her leading position in the general classification.
The stage involved a ride around Canelli with a challenging finish atop a hill. Despite various attempts from other riders to take the lead, no significant breakaways occurred. A key incident happened when Urska Zigart lost control of her bike, crashing into young rider jersey wearer Antonia Niedermaier, a previous stage winner yesterday, had to drop out after a nasty-looking crash which left the young German with facial injuries.
Team dsm-firmenich set a high pace during the stage, and it was on the Calosso climb that Van Vleuten made her decisive move. Coming over the top of an early Labous move, Van Vleuten got a gap and wasn’t seen again. Wearing the pink jersey of the race leader, she established a 20-second lead that she continued to extend.
This stage win marks Van Vleuten’s fifteenth in the Women’s Giro d’Italia. She showed great determination and crossed the finish line alone in Canelli, thereby consolidating her lead and now looks set to secure her 4th career Giro Donne GC win provided she makes it safely through the final 3 stages.
In the tough uphill finishing sprint, Lorena Wiebes came in second place, just ahead of German champion Liane Lippert, but 20 seconds behind Van Vleuten. This resulted in some shifts in the standings of the other competitors in the race with Veronica Ewers up to 2nd place and Juliette Labous in 3rd.
“Everyone was focused on the mountain stage of yesterday, so it’s cool to win on a day that’s actually for the sprinters. I was able to prevent that by attacking. A plan comes together, which is really nice. That was indeed the plan beforehand. It was a 2.5-kilometre climb and you could feel that everyone was still tired. At that point, my chances of making a difference increase. I wasn’t necessarily aiming for time gain today. I want to enjoy the Giro, but know I also need to stay focused. The attack is the best defence, as Johan Cruijff once said.”Annemiek van Vleuten
2023 Giro Donne Stage 6 result
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