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Van Vleuten: Cavalli’s victories are good for women’s cycling

Van Vleuten: Cavalli's victories are good for women's cycling

Journalists often overlook the significance of a second-placed result, focussing more on the failure to win than the importance of a podium finish. Annemiek van…

Saturday, Apr 23

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Journalists often overlook the significance of a second-placed result, focussing more on the failure to win than the importance of a podium finish.

Annemiek van Vleuten (Movistar), who finished second at La Flèche Wallonne , pushed back against this line of inquiry and emphasised that Marta Cavalli’s victory is a good sign for women’s cycling.

"I think it’s really good for women’s cycling that it’s not only the Dutch girls that are making it hard for each other," Van Vleuten said on Saturday.

The Dutch riders have been utterly dominant for years, with the now-retired Anna van der Breggen holding the record for seven straight wins on the Mur de Huy. The Dutch women have won six of the last ten road world championships, Lorena Wiebes has the most wins of 2022 and Van Vleuten is the number 1 rider of the past 12 months.

But the rest of the world is catching up a little. Italy has the rainbow jersey on Elisa Balsamo’s shoulders, Elisa Longo Borghini won Paris-Roubaix and Cavalli is on the cusp of a possible Ardennes triple in Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

"I think it’s super good that other nationalities step up – also with the win of Lotte Kopecky [in Tour of Flanders, ed] – it’s what we need in women’s cycling," Van Vleuten said.

The 39-year-old has complained several times this spring that races were not selective enough and looks forward to these teams helping the progression of women’s cycling."We need more nationalities and more girls that win, also more teams […]

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