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Vittoria Guazzini finally claims Le Samyn des Dames victory

Following the excitement of the Opening Weekend, the next Belgian one-day race to take place was today’s Le Samyn des Dames. In wet and mucky conditions the women’s race was expected to be decided on the local lap around Dour, featuring challenging cobblestone sections.

The race saw an early attack by British rider Elund King and Dutch cyclist Anneke Dijkstra, but Dijkstra eventually forged ahead solo. Despite building a lead of around one and a half minutes, she was soon joined by Karlijn Swinkels and Anniina Ahtosalo. With 75 kilometres remaining, the trio led the race. Although the gap to the peloton exceeded two minutes with 50 kilometres left, it began to shrink rapidly.

In the final 20 kilometres, a counterattack emerged from the peloton. Christina Schweinberger, Vittoria Guazzini, and Wilma Aintila attempted to bridge the gap to the leading trio. While they managed to close in, the chase remained challenging. Schweinberger, Guazzini, and Aintila struggled to catch up entirely. Meanwhile, Dijkstra, Swinkels, and Ahtosalo maintained their lead despite the pressure.

As the race entered its decisive phase, the five leaders faced intense competition from the chasing peloton. Schweinberger and Guazzini eventually caught up with the front group, setting the stage for a thrilling finale. In the sprint finish, Guazzini demonstrated her strength, claiming victory ahead of Ahtosalo and Schweinberger. Dijkstra and Swinkels completed the top five.

For Guazzini, the victory marked a significant achievement, especially after finishing third in the two previous editions of Le Samyn. The Italian rider expressed relief and satisfaction, particularly considering her challenging recovery from injury in the previous season.

Meanwhile, Thalita de Jong’s return to form has been notable, with strong performances in both the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Le Samyn des Dames. Despite facing adversity in recent years, De Jong’s resilience has propelled her back into contention at the top level of women’s cycling.

Both Guazzini and De Jong aim to maintain their momentum, with upcoming races including GP Oetingen, Dwars door Vlaanderen, Gent-Wevelgem, and the Tour of Flanders. While De Jong’s focus remains on road racing, her talent and determination continue to inspire confidence in her team, Lotto Dstny. The next major race will be Strade Bianche on Saturday.

2024 Le Samyn des Dames result

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