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Eleonora Camilla Gasparrini UAE Team ADQ (ITA) celebrates on the podium with the U23 leader’s jersey and flowers following Stage One of the Ford RideLondon Classique in Colchester

Pre-race quotes

Pre-race quotes for Stage Two of the 2023 Ford RideLondon Classique

Ahead of the second stage of today’s (27 May) Ford RideLondon Classique, riders speak about the challenges and plans for the route.

Stage One winner Charlotte Kool (Team DSM, NED) said: “Of course, really excited and we are ready to go again today, so yes I’m really looking forward. We want to play a bit the same as yesterday, it was a really nice situation for us, so hopefully today we’ll also have a really nice race and I will be there with Pfeiffer in the front again.”

Clara Copponi (FDJ-SUEZ), second overall, said: “I’m really motivated. It’s cool to start the day in second place. I know I’m a few seconds behind, but there are two sprints during the race and there will probably be another sprint finish, so I’m really motivated and looking forward to seeing what happens. I feel good after the first stage yesterday, and taking second place makes me feel more confident in my shape, even if it’s not the best, so I want to enjoy it today.”

Lizzie Diegnan (Trek-Segafredo, USA), third overall, said: “The legs are good I guess, I’ve not done much yet. Today the plan is just to be aggressive, we’ve got nothing to lose and any rider in the team has an opportunity to do something. We’ll be aggressive and have some fun.

“Our mindset is nothing to lose. We came here with a sprinter and realistically in a race like this, there’s so many bonus seconds available it’s very difficult to win the overall without a sprinter… I think the best thing for us is to just let everybody have their opportunity and that’s really unusual in professional cycling, because usually we have a very strict plan but here now, we have nothing to lose now – that’s quite unusual but a fun situation to be in. I always like to have a firm hand, it’s nicer to have a sprinter that you know can win the race, but we’ll make the best of the situation.”

Hanna Johansson (Team Torelli, IRL), Queen of the Mountains leader, said: “I think today is going to be harder defending it [QoM jersey] than getting it. We’ll try the same tactic as yesterday…and if I can get some points at the first QoM, then I think I’ll have it.”

Britain’s Anna Henderson (Team Jumbo-Visma, NED) said: “Our team survived all the crashes, luckily none of us crashed, so yes it was a good day yesterday and we had two girls in the final. We’ve all recovered well, and we’re all looking forward to another hard day and we’re really excited.”

Eleonora Gasparrini, U23 leader (UAE Team ADQ), said: “I’m ok, I’m feeling good and I’m happy about the race yesterday. Today is another day and we’ll try again as a team to do something good. For sure I will try to keep this jersey.”