American Coryn Rivera won Saturday’s Prudential RideLondon Classique in a sprint finish. It was her fourth Women’s WorldTour victory of the 2017 season.
The 24-year-old Sunweb rider scooted past Lisa Brennauer (Canyon-SRAM) on the outside and held off Cervelo-Bigla’s Lotta Lepisto, who was closing fast in the end. Lepisto ended up second. Brennauer was third.
Rivera said her teammates were key to her victory after 12 technical laps of the 5.5km circuit in central London.
“It’s really special to win a race here,” said Rivera. “But the team is everything to me; that’s what makes this really special.”
Lepisto, who recently won stage 6 at the Giro Rosa, conceded that Rivera was the faster rider on Saturday.
“I think I had the perfect position but my final sprint wasn’t good enough, so Coryn got past me on the line,” said Lepisto.
The German Brennauer also was up-beat after the 66km race.
“After crashing last year, I am happy with third because the race was super-fast despite the rain,” said Brennauer. “I tried to ride fast and stay out of trouble.”
On the final lap the bunch was together, after several prime sprints. Alexis Ryan led-out with her Canyon-SRAM teammates Hannah Barnes and Brennauer behind her.
Ace sprinter Kirsten Wild (Cylance) was nearby with Christine Majerus (Boels-Dolmans) also poised. But Sunweb timed its lead-out perfectly, delivering Rivera in time for the sprint.
“We saw the forecast yesterday so we knew what was coming,” said Rivera. “It’s really cool to have a downtown race like this; it compares to American criteriums. I love that environment and spirit, and I love crowds so it was really fun today.”
To make the day even sweeter, Sunweb won the team prize. “This is definitely a highlight for me and the team,” Rivera added. “I’m really excited for all of us today.”