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4th Primavera Rosa - CDM

Italy, March 23, 2002

2001 Results    Preview    Start list     Past winners


By Jeff Jones

Held on the same day and over part of the same parcours as the men's Milan-San Remo, La Primavera Rosa is steadily growing in stature in women's cycling. The race, now in its fourth year, benefits from the significant spectator turnout for Milan-San Remo, finishing on San Remo's Via Roma approximately 1.5 hours before the men.

Last year's race saw Sweden's Susanne Ljungskog put in a strong attack 200 metres from the top of the Poggio, extending her lead on the descent and holding it over the final 4 kilometres. This year, Ljungskog will have the benefit of more racing miles in her legs after participating in the first two World Cups in Australia and New Zealand. She can certainly repeat her win, but will be marked a lot more closely this year.

Her biggest challenge will come from the Saturn team, which has won both World Cups with the impressive Petra Rossner the clear leader in the competition. If it comes down to another bunch sprint, then Rossner will be practically unbeatable. It is a good bet that Saturn will try and keep the peloton together to achieve that result.

There are plenty of other contenders who will try and prevent this of course. Don't rule out the Deia-Pragma-Colnago team with young star Nicole Cooke easily able to pull off a solo victory. Cooke won the Trofeo Citta' Di Rosignano last week after a very confident ride.

Acca Due O boasts Lithuanian World Champion Rasa Polikeviciute, as well as the 2000 race winner Diana Ziliute. The Farm Frites-Hartol team boasts similar strength, with Leontien Van Moorsel and Mirjam Melchers in the lineup.

La Primavera Rosa starts in Varezze and follows exactly the same route as the final 118 kilometres of the men's race, including the Capo Cervo, Capo Berta, Cipressa and the Poggio. The racing will be typically wild, with the Italians seeking a home victory at a very early point in their season.

Past winners

2001 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe)
2000 Diana Ziliute (Ltu) 
1999 Sara Felloni (Ita) 

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