Australia

Injured Van Flueten watches out for Spratt

Nail-hard Annemiek van Vleuten’s broken elbow has put Australian rival Amanda Spratt on high alert at the World Road Cycling Championships.

The Dutch ace crashed heavily at the start of her ride at the mixed-team relay in Wollongong on Wednesday, later confirming the extent of her injuries.

It’s a blow to van Vleuten’s chances, but she’s known to be one of the toughest riders in world cycling.

The Olympic and world champion returned to racing just weeks after a horrific crash at the Rio Olympics that may have killed her.

Two years ago van Vleuten finished runner-up at Road World after breaking his wrist the previous week.

“If it was anyone other than Annemiek van Vleuten, who had broken his elbow, they probably wouldn’t be racing.

“She’s the toughest, most resilient. I don’t want to say crazy[but]I can 100% imagine her starting on Saturday.

“My guess is she’s still racing. She’s hungry for more and definitely wants to beat her.”

As usual, the Dutch will be a team to watch on Saturday’s road race. This road race features tough courses in and around Wollongong and is built for Van Vruten’s all-around strengths.

“We’re a bit of a crazy race at times, but we can get through the pain and be patient…she’s probably one of the best athletes in that regard.

“She’s a rider who can bounce back from something like this and produce an incredible performance.”

It was a world of frustration for van Freuten after a shocking failure to medal in last Sunday’s individual time trial.

“Some people deny her, but I think the opposite happens,” Spratt said.

The Australian was also a rider to watch on Saturday, with two world podium finishes.

Spratt had reconstructed foam after needing major surgery to fix an iliac artery problem almost a year ago.

Her first eilte World Championship start was in Geelong in 2010, the only time Australia hosted the event.

“It’s so great to come back after so many years and race here in Wollongong,” she said.

“Yesterday my mom and dad took me to Worlds and it felt a little weird being squashed in the back seat with my bike and my bike bag.

“It’s going to be really special.”

The Australians assemble a team with potential medalists and all-around strength.

Spratt will serve as the on-road captain and will provide team leadership alongside Grace Brown and Alex Manley.

“I feel fresher and happier with how my form is doing,” she said.

“It suits me, but it also suits our team, especially Grace Brown and Alex Manley.

“We can definitely be competitive.”

Another Australian to watch is Brody Chapman.

Her main job is to work for her teammates in the depths of the race, but she is also capable of delivering results and looms large as a dark horse.

“Other countries I race in know who I am, so there are a lot of riders who want to follow me when I try to make a sneaky move,” Chapman said. said.

Injured Van Flueten watches out for Spratt

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