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Your Monday Briefing

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Get your week started with the latest news in women’s cycling:

  • The Women’s Tour, which was originally scheduled for June, has been postponed, but the organisers are looking to reschedule the event for 4-9 October 2021.
  • The Bretagne Ladies Tour, originally planned for 19-23 May, has been cancelled due to COVID-19, with organisers aiming for a return to the calendar in 2022.
  • Grace Brown of BikeExchange has won the Australian Female Road Cyclist of the Year Award, while Stephanie Morton was named the Female Track Cyclist of the year and Sarah Gigante received the inaugural E-Sport Cyclist of the Year award.
  • The Spring Classics, which will kick off the 2021 Pro Series events with Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, will prohibit fans from watching the race roadside. The start and finish will be cordoned off and hills and cobbled sections blocked off to spectators. There will also be a ban on gatherings of more than 4 people along the route. The finale of the race will be broadcast live.
  • Australia’s oldest and longest race, the 105th edition of the Melbourne to Warrnambool Race, which was cancelled due to a recent short-term lockdown in Melbourne, will still be held this year, on the new date of 1 May.
  • Twenty teams will line up at the start of the Danilith Nokere Koerse on 17 March. The list of participating squads can be found here.
  • The start list of Dwars Door Vlaanderen has been announced. Eight WT teams and 20 continental teams will compete at the race, which is scheduled for 31 March.
  • The inaugural Women’s Paris Roubaix, set for 11 April, will be televised by the Australian broadcaster SBS, which will bring 4 hours of live racing.
  • Ayesha McGowan has joined the Dutch squad, Liv Racing, as a trainee. The American rider will train with the WT team with the aim of starting racing in August this year. McGowan has been competing with Liv Racing in the U.S. but will now take on international racing.
  • Women in Cycling has recently been launched with the goal of creating a platform for women from all areas of cycling to access assistance for projects, exchange ideas and encourage cycling organisations to adopt policies that improve diversity and gender balance. The launch will be held on 24 February with guest Bonnie Tau, the Chair of the Giant Group and Founder of Liv Cycling.
  • British cyclocross legend Helen Wyman announced that Charm City Cross in Baltimore will host two UCI Junior Women’s races in October. Funded by the Helen 100 Foundation, riders will receive financial support and payouts will be equal to the junior men’s prize money.
  • Cyclocross rider Sanne Cant will be riding several of the Spring Classics with Team Ciclisimo Mundial. Other riders of the Belgian squad include Annemarie Worst and Ceylin de Carmen Alvarado.

Results

  • Waaslandcross Sint-Niklaas was taken out by Denise Betsema ahead of Annemarie Worst and Sane Cant.
  • The final race of the cyclocross season, the Internationale Sluitingsprijs Oostmalle, was won by Denise Betsema, with Sanne Cant and Inge van der Heijden rounding out the podium.

Zwift Blog

  • Our newest blogger, Mavi Garcia of Alé BTC Ljubljana, has written her first exclusive piece, where she shares her experience of becoming a pro. The Spanish rider came to cycling rather late, after having been involved in other sports, but upon making the switch, quickly made great strides in her newly-chosen field. The blog is available in both English and Spanish!
  • Having sustained an injury last year, Tanja Erath is looking forward to the new season and being part of her new squad, Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank. In her latest blog, she tells us all about last year, her road to recovery, and her outlook for 2021.

Keep updated on social media!

  • Be sure to follow us on FacebookInstagram and Twitter to keep updated on our latest events and announcements, such as Instagram takeovers by pro-riders during the week, and much more!

This week in cycling history…

  • Former road and track cyclist Marion Clignet turned 57 on 21 February. The dual French and American national was diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 22 and was told she would not be able to compete in the sport on the international scene. Despite good results on the national level, she was subsequently turned down by the US Cycling Federation after attempting to compete for her country at the Olympics. Not easily deterred, she decided to race for France, the birth country of her parents. With great support from the French Federation, she went on to ride for that country at three Olympic Games. She was twice national road champion, won Chrono des Nations, as well as a gold medal in the team time trial at the Road World Championships and a series of gold medals at the Track World Championships.  She now lives near Toulouse and since her retirement from active competition in 2004, has worked as a coach, organising sportives and being involved in charity rides for the benefit of fighting epilepsy. Clignet was also instrumental in creating the French Association of Female Cyclists, which aims to improve conditions for female professional cyclists. In her autobiography, she writes about her early years on the bike at the University of Maryland, her work as a cycling courier, being caught between two cultures, and life in professional road racing and cycling on the track.

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