After spending the day in the break, Coryn Rivera used all of her experience and guile to take Team DSM’s third Giro Donne victory in the two-up sprint finish.
The final day of racing at the Giro saw the bunch take on an interesting and hilly parcours, with 113 kilometres from Capriva del Friuli to Cormons, which included a climb that crested at just ten kilometres to go. It was an intense start to the stage before a very strong five rider group went clear on the first ascent of the day, with Coryn Rivera riding well to make the move for the team.
On the next climb there were fireworks in the chasing peloton, where Juliette Labous and Liane Lippert made it into a group of 13. Yet, the cohesion in the group slowed and the now diminished peloton reeled them in, before more riders returned from behind.
Working well out front, Rivera and her breakaway companions held onto a one minute and 50 second advantage as the race charged into the final 50 kilometres. From that point, the gap yo-yoed to the chasing peloton, going down to as low as 30 seconds before increasing again and heading onto the last climb, Rivera’s breakaway led by over a minute. With the group diminishing to four riders, it became tactical out front with Rivera forming an alliance with Chabbey, who was the only other rider willing to pull as the race headed towards the finale.
Once it became clear that they would fight it out for the win, Deignan started to take a turn again in the closing two kilometres, setting up a fast finale. Using all of her experience and guile, Rivera gritted her teeth and delivered an incredibly punchy sprint finish on the slight drag uphill, timing her bike throw perfectly to claim a fantastic win for the team; raising her arm aloft for her first win of the season and the Women program’s 11th.
Behind in the chasing bunch, Liane Lippert sprinted to sixth place while Juliette Labous finished safely, securing a strong seventh place on GC for the team. After a brilliant week of riding, the team leaves Italy with three fantastic stage wins and a well-earned and hard-fought overall classification position.
“What a day,” beamed Rivera at the finish. “Over the first GPM I found myself in a bit of a move. Unfortunately, Juliette was caught in a crash behind, but at least we had a good situation at the front of the race. The gap grew pretty big, so we were pretty confident that it would stay to the line and it was also a strong group, and we were cooperating well. I was taking a pull on the climb and was trying to figure out how to beat two Trek riders, but I managed to drop one and continued to push the pace. The rest of the stage just came down to instincts and proper racing. I wanted to keep an eye on the other two girls, while Lizzie was my biggest competitor in the sprint. I let her open it up early and the finish was a little close, but I had a little extra motivation with my dad on my shoulder and it’s also Nate, my fiancé’s birthday, so I had some extra motivation today. I’m really happy with my personal performance. I know the girls had some challenges today, with Juliette and Lorena crashing, but they’re both okay and we adjusted really well. Juliette sealed up GC and we all came home pretty safe so I think we can all be happy with the last ten days and the final stage.”
Team DSM coach Albert Timmer added: “It was an unbelievable day for us. Coryn did an incredible job by being out front in the strong breakaway, so that we could then sit comfortably behind in the peloton. The way Coryn and the whole team rode today was on a really high level. It was great that Coryn could finish it off in the sprint and I’m really proud of how the girls rode today and overall at the Giro. It’s been a good race for us!”
Stage General classification Points classification Youth classification Mountains classification Teams classification
|1||RIVERA Coryn||Team DSM||2:56:40||25|
|2||DEIGNAN Elizabeth||Trek-Segafredo Women||,,||20|
|3||CHABBEY Elise||Canyon SRAM Racing||0:03||15|
Photo credit: Cor Vos