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RideLondon Classique: Lotte Kopecky rounds off weekend with podium on stage 3

SD Worx team couldn’t make it hard enough against unstoppable Wiebes.

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LONDON, United Kingdom (VN) – Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) rounded off the RideLondon Classique by sprinting to third in London, her best result of the weekend.

The Belgian, who has won two WorldTour races this year and is currently the WorldTour leader, was pleased to improve on her back-to-back fourth places on stages 1 and 2.

“I’m happy I could finish off with a podium, because it’s pretty frustrating coming fourth twice,” Kopecky said at the finish. “I think also today I had a really good lead-out from the team.”

Also read: RideLondon Classique stage 3: Lorena Wiebes completes a hat-trick of sprint wins

Kopecky won the opening stage of the Vuelta a Burgos last weekend with an impressive sprint, but the Tour of Flanders winner could not match the speed of Lorena Wiebes (Team DSM) at RideLondon.

“We try every time but it’s pretty hard to beat Lorena Wiebes,” she said. “But we keep believing that one day it will be possible, and we just have to keep on working to do so.”

SD Worx was active on the front of the peloton in the middle section of the race, with Van den Broek-Blaak, Reusser and Kopecky all putting in powerful efforts on the front and taking control from race leaders Team DSM.

The team’s plan managed to distance some riders – the peloton shrunk to only 50 riders at one point – but it couldn’t make it hard enough to disadvantage the likes of Wiebes and Balsamo.

“It’s really hard to drop somebody, but at least we could make the race a bit harder,” Kopecky said. “Also with the corners, everything is in one line and you are really suffering.

“But after one lap, it was clear that this was going to do nothing, because then when we dropped a few places it was quite easy in the wheels. We were riding nowhere.”

After taking over a month off between Paris-Roubaix and the Vuelta a Burgos, Kopecky said she is happy with her progress ahead of her key summer goals.

“The legs are good. It’s not really physically but more mentally that you lose something. So it’s nice to be off the bike for a bit and then be super excited to get back on it.

“I’m working towards the Giro and the Tour, which is still five weeks, so I think I can still improve a lot. But it’s nice to have ridden this RideLondon and get back into a race rhythm.”

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