Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling’s Kirsten Wild is excited ahead of the challenge of Saturday’s Prudential RideLondon Classique, which will see its sixth edition. Born out of the spectacle of the London 2012 Olympic Games, the Classique is raced around a fast circuit at the centre of the British capital, in front of the Queen’s official residence in London.
Wild won the 2016 edition of the race, while Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling’s German Time Trial Champion Lisa Brennauer finished in third place last year, under some of the heaviest rain seen all season. The black and orange team has a good history in the race, winning the first two editions through double Olympic Track Champion Laura Kenny (née Trott) and former two-time World Champion Giorgia Bronzini.
“I’m looking forward, and I’m also a bit excited because it’s a WorldTour race,” Wild said. “So it’s a WorldTour field, and there will be some good rivals I think. It will be interesting.”
The 5.4km circuit is based on a lap around St James’s Park, in front of Buckingham Palace, with the familiar finish line on The Mall that was used in London 2012. Despite the almost completely flat profile, however, challenges will come as the peloton deals with sharp corners on Trafalgar Square, as well as two low-speed u-turns in Whitehall and Constitution Hill.
“It’s not challenging in the way of a climb or something, but it’s a really hard one with positioning, and being on a good moment also,” Wild explained. “Lisa is really good in things like this, and I think we are together a really good team to be in a good position, and in a good moment. But everybody knows you have to be in a good position in the u-turn, so that makes it hard!
“Everybody knows you have to be in front!” she laughed.
Wild and Brennauer will be accompanied by some of the World’s best track riders, who will look to use their power on the flat, but technical circuit. Australian Amy Cure is the first cyclist in history to have won a World Championship medal in every one of the sport’s endurance events, and she will be joined by compatriot, former World Junior Time Trial Champion Macey Stewart.
Italian Rachele Barbieri, a World Champion at the age of 20 in the 2017 Scratch Race, travels to the race having recently won the Italian Derny title, while the team’s sprinting credentials will be further enhanced by former two-time World Junior Champion Lucy Garner.
“We have good team, and you get some really good experience together,” Wild said. “Lisa and me did so many finals together, so yeah, we will see!”
Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling team for Prudential RideLondon Classique
Rachele Barbieri (Italy), Lisa Brennauer (Germany), Amy Cure (Australia), Lucy Garner (Great Britain), Macey Stewart (Australia) and Kirsten Wild (Netherlands)
Photo Credit: Vélofocus