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Lotta Hettala leads the peloton into the finish of Vuelta a Burgos Stage 1.

Burgos Feminas stage 1 report: Henttala wins hectic sprint

Carina Schrempf, who had been attampting a late race move, managed to hold off Wiebes and take second.

Two years after her retirement from cycling and one year after returning to the peloton Lotta Henttala took her first WorldTour win since 2018 when she outsprinted late escapee Carina Schrempf (Fenix-Deceuninck) and Lorena Wiebes (SD Worx-Protime) to take the first stage of Vuelta a Burgos. Schrempf had been attempting to solo to a win after a late attack but was caught by the peloton on the line. A crash impacted Wiebes and took down Elisa Balsamo, but the Dutchwoman was still able to finish third.

After winning the opening stage, Henttala pulled on the leader’s jersey ahead of the second stage on Friday. Schrempf will need to find four seconds and Wiebes six seconds to take the jersey from Henttala on the hilly second stage.

How it unfolded

Stage Top 10

Brief Analysis

GC Top 5 after Stage 1

Crash Updates

Balsamo and Bertizzolo were the two most impacted by the crash in the finale.

“Following the crash that occurred today in the finale of the first stage of the Vuelta a Burgos Feminas and that involved UAE Team ADQ athlete Sofia Bertizzolo, clinical examinations carried out at the Hospital Universitario de Burgos revealed a fracture of the radius of the left forearm,” UAE Team ADQ confirmed after the race.

Both riders will likely be out of the peloton for some time. According to UAE Team ADQ’s medical staff, they will wait to evaluate Bertizzolo until after a plaster cast is placed.

Balsamo’s 2023 season was drastically impacted by a crash last year at RideLondon that saw the former World Champion miss over a month of riding due to compound fractures of the right mandibular condyle and mandibular symphysis. She returned to racing at the Tour de France Femmes in July but abandoned the race ahead of the seventh stage. She would go on to win a stage of the Simac Ladies Tour in September.

Quote of the day

It’s been quite a long journey for me to come back. I had a baby a few years ago, and then I had the long COVID. So yeah. But I started to feel better, you know, month by month. So it’s been lovely.

Hettala after winning stage 1 of Vuelta a Burgos

What’s next?

From the Wheel Talk Newsletter:

Stage 2 has less elevation gain than the first stage, but does end with a Category 2 ascent. A Cat 3 earlier in the stage might offer an opportunity for some early breakaways, but once the race reaches the top of the 7 km climb they have another 91 km to race.

The finale is the really interesting bit of the second stage, with a few minor uncategorized climbs in the final 20 km that will test the legs before the race gets to the 3.8 km Cat 2 summit finish.

Alto de Rosales may average 5.2% but has slopes of 10%, with the most challenging sections near the top. It will be a stage that sets the scene for the general classification.

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