This past weekend was full of surprises and glorious victories, first with Matej Mohoric winning Milan-San Remo and now Elisa Balsamo took the Trofeo Alfredo Binda victory. The Italian World Champion has also hailed the first few months of 2022 as the “Best In Her Career” so that definitely says a lot.
This was the Italian’s first season with Trek-Segafredo and it has been going really well so far, she even racked up a great victory. Before taking this win, she came fourth at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, another impressive achievement.
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Seems like this victory was a big compliment for her 2022 season debut, last week she finished second at the second race of Women’s WorldTour (WWT), the Ronde van Drenthe. After the race event, Balsamo stated:
It has been the best start of the season in my career. The [rainbow] jersey is giving me confidence and also much emotion with all the people cheering for you and asking for photos.
The change of team is also giving me opportunities and to be racing side by side with great riders. It is a great group of strong riders that are keen to help each other to take the win for the team.
I am in a team that has the strength to lead the race and manage it. For a rider like me this is amazing. We create our chances and not just waiting for what the others will do.
As far as current rankings go, Balsamo has accumulated 720 points. 400 points for the Trofeo Alfredo Binda victory and 320 points for Drenthe. After winning her first WWT race she was overwhelmed with joy and described it as a “Special Emotion”. Balsamo was also accompanied by her teammates that helped her out, Elisa Longo Borghini covered the front from attacks, whereas Ellen Van Dijk, and Shirin van Anrooij played tag team for the finale.
Elisa Balsamo had nothing but praise for her team, she stated proudly:
I really have to thank my teammates because at one point in the race we all decided to go for the sprint. Elisa, Ellen and Shirin were perfect – more than perfect – to support me. It was a great boost of confidence for me in this moment to have such great riders at my disposal.
Of course, I have to mention the great but unseen work by Audrey Cordon-Ragot and Leah Thomas in the first part of the race. When you are able to get to the final sprint with full energy it’s not only because I have good condition, but because I have teammates who saved me [expending] energy during the race and in a finish like this it’s essential.
Her performance in the finale, how she dashed outside of Chantal van den Broek-Blaak and left Sofia Bertizzolo (UAE Team ADQ) in the dust was a sight to behold. We cannot wait to see more of her in the upcoming events. For more updates, you know where to look!
Featured Image Via YouTube/ GCN Italia