The Strade Bianche Women Elite, organised by RCS Sport/La Gazzetta dello Sport, will be held on Saturday 7 March and will start just few hours before the men’s race.
The event is among the most spectacular races of the year, both for its beautiful course that runs between two World Heritage sites, and for its starting list, which includes many of the world’s fastest and most technical riders.
16 TEAMS AT THE START WITH 6 RIDERS EACH
RABO LIV WOMEN CYCLING TEAM (NED) - Marianne Vos
BOELS DOLMANS CYCLING TEAM (NED) - Lizzie Armitstead
WIGGLE HONDA (GBR) - Elisa Longo Borghini, Giorgia Bronzini
VELOCIO - SRAM (GER) - Lisa Brennauer, Tiffany Cromwell
ORICA - AIS (AUS) - Emma Johansson, Valentina Scandolara
BIGLA PRO CYCLING TEAM (SUI) - Annemiek Van Vleuten
LOTTO SOUDAL LADIES (BEL) - Elena Cecchini
ALE CIPOLLINI (ITA) - Francesca Cauz
INPA SOTTOLI GIUSFREDI (ITA) - Rossella Ratto
ASTANA - ACCA DUE O (KAZ) - Anna Solovey
BTC CITY LJUBLJANA (SLO) - Eva Lechner
SERVETTO FOOTON (ITA) - Elena Kuchinskaya
S.C. MICHELA FANINI ROX (ITA) - Lara Vieceli
BE PINK LACLASSICA (ITA) - Anastasia Chulkova
AROMITALIA VAIANO (ITA) - Rasa Leleyvite
TOP GIRLS FASSA BORTOLO (ITA) - Chiara Pierobon
COURSE AND LAST KILOMETERS
A hilly and rolling course (103km in total) with no long climbs, but with many short steep ones. In total there will be 17km of gravel roads on the course, divided into five sectors, of which the first one and last two are also used for the men’s race.
From the start line in San Gimignano, the first 33km is on rolling, asphalted roads. The route passes close to the splendid medieval village of Monteriggioni, before the first White Road section begins (2.2km). Here the women's course separates from the men’s and proceeds for 24km before the spectacular and decisive 9.5km sector between the Crete Senesi, a very long stretch with continuous undulations in the first part, and ending in a climb with wide open curves before rejoining the paved road. Not far from this point starts the third White Road sector (2.2km) which rejoins the men’s course 20km before the finish line, just after Vico d’Arbia. The penultimate section of White Roads (2.4km) starts on the climb up to Colle Pinzuto, with gradients of up to 15%. The final section (1.1km) begins with a sharp descent followed by a steep ascent (maximum gradient 18%), which finishes at the village of Le Tolfe. From there, 12km remain to the finish line at Siena's Piazza del Campo.
The demanding final kilometers, with gradients up to 16%, approach the city of Siena along broad, straight sections of road, connected by sweeping curves, first descending, and then climbing slightly. 2km from the finish line, the route joins Via Esterna de Fontebranda, where the gradient touches 9%.
900m from the finish line, the race route passes beneath Fontebranda Gate where the road surface changes to paving slabs. The gradient exceeds 10% until 500m from the finish line, reaching its maximum of 16% in Via Santa Caterina. A sharp right hand turn leads to Via delle Terme, and then Via Banchi di Sotto. With 300m to go, the road continues to climb slightly then, 150m from the line, a right turn leads into Via Rinaldini. The route enters the Piazza del Campo just 70m from the finish line. The final 30m descends at a gradient of 7% and the finish line itself is flat.
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