In Monday’s fourth stage of the Giro Rosa, British rider Lizzy Banks made an early break and never looked back.
After just 80 kilometers of racing, Banks and Bujak formed a breakaway and established a sizable lead on the peloton just before Rieti. The two riders worked together to maintain a gap of up to six minutes on the peloton fifteen kilometers from the finish.
In the last steep kilometer over the cobblestones of the inner city of Tivoli, Banks proved that she had energy left for the final punch. The British rider says that she knew where to attack.
“We had done a good course recon, and looked at the route and where the best place to attack would be,” Banks said. “We knew we had to go early and I tried several times, and then eventually I succeeded and got away with another strong rider. I wasn’t sure if it would work, but the gap kept growing and the time went out to 6 minutes and so we kept pushing. I was thinking the entire time about how I could win the stage. I decided to attack on a steep part and once I had the gap, all I had to do was to push through until the line. I was determined to win, and I did it.”
In the chasing peloton, Annemiek van Vleuten managed to claim third place and thus cement her lead in the general classification.
This is Banks’ second stage win at the Giro Rosa; in 2019 she took stage 8 in an impressive breakaway. Last month, her strong form in 2020 was on display with a second-place finish at the WWT race GP Plouay.
Banks’ team, Équipe Paule Ka, has already made an impactful showing at this year’s Giro Rosa, On Friday, the team finished fourth during the opening team time trial, and Kiwi rider Mikayla Harvey has had the white jersey since the race began.
The Giro Rosa continues on Tuesday with a 110.3 km stage from Terracina.