The Chirio Forno D'Asolo team celebratd its first World Cup victory on Sunday evening, after Tetyana Riabchenko broke away in a late-race counterattack and managed to stay away until the finish in Chonging Avenue. She was riding strongly, but her victory was confirmed when the leading riders in the chasing peloton took a wrong turn with just a couple of kilometres remaining in the race and lost valuable time.
The race was marked with breakaways and attacks throughout the 126.8 kilometre journey from Shanghaiâs Oriental Sports Center back to Chongming Island. Best Asian rider in the preceding three-day Tour of Chongming Island, Eun Hee Kim (Korea) and Qianyu Yang (Hong Kong) broke away before the 8 kilometres long Chanjiang Tunnel under the River Yangtze. They stayed away until the climb of the Yangtze River bridge and the sidewinds combined to bring an end to their duel effort.
About twenty kilometres later, French National Team rider, Aude Blannici, made a strong and long-lived attack. She was able to stay away and extend her lead on the part of the course which ran on smaller roads, off the highways which were used for more than half of the race. Blannici stayed away until the race rejoined the larger roads and the peloton began to organise for the anticipated sprint finish.
After the Frenchwoman had been caught, Riabchenko tried her luck and counterattacked. The Ukrainian led in the closing kilometres with a slender lead and within sight of the chasers. With about two kilometres remaining, the riders at the front of the peloton took a wrong turn and found themselves riding on the wrong side of the road's centre barriers. By the time they were able to cross over to the correct carriageway, Riabchenko had got away. The bunch sprint was ragged, but Giorgia Bronzini (Wiggle Honda) had the speed to take second ahead of Amy Pieters (Argos Shimano).
Chirio Forno D'Asolo were happy to take the victory and Riabchenkoâs team-mate, Whitney Gaggioli pointed out that âwe keep trying these attacks and sometimes, things stick. Tetyana put herself in the right place, [by counterattacking] and she had to be there up front to get the luck afterwards.â
Although not present, Marianne Vos (Rabobank Womenâs team) maintained her UCI World Cup series lead and will wear the leaderâs jersey at the next round in Vargarda, Sweden in August, where there will be both team time trial and road race World Cups