Glorious return to cyclocross for Van Empel
Fem van Empel has marked her return to the field with a victory. The 21-year-old...
Anna Henderson has finished the first stage of the Ceratizit Challenge by la Vuelta in sixth place. Marlen Reusser won the battle for the medal from a breakaway group of four riders.
Team Jumbo-Visma Women did not come out of the opening stage unscathed. Nancy van der Burg and Aafke Soet were involved in an early crash. Soet was able to continue her way, but Van der Burg had to leave the race after hitting the asphalt.
In the first stage of the Spanish stage race, the peloton was immediately confronted with a tough course. On the climb of the day, Alto da Portela, several riders managed to create a gap on the peloton. In the descent to the finish in A Rúa the remaining four maintained their lead of almost two minutes. In the sprint of the peloton Henderson finished second.
“Today was super tough”, the British rider said. “Unfortunately, Aafke and Nancy crashed, so we lost two girls early on. I was suffering in the first part of the climb, but managed to do a good effort and make it over the top in the front group. Riejanne Markus and Amber Kraak did a really good job to position me for the final sprint. I am super surprised with today, but also happy with this result for the team.”
Sports director Marco Postma looked back on the hectic first stage. “At the moment that the leading group broke away, Riejanne missed out. Just before that, she had already responded to other attacks a few times. Their lead was so big that they couldn’t be caught. Anna became 6th after a good lead-out by Amber and Riejanne. Unfortunately Nancy had a bad crash, but apart from a wound in her face, she seems to be okay. Luckily she hasn’t broken anything and at the moment it looks like she hasn’t suffered any serious injuries.”