Labecki sprints to third place in opening stage Setmana Ciclista Valenciana
Coryn Labecki has secured Team Jumbo-Visma's first podium finish of the road season. The 30-year-old American sprinted to third place in the opening stage of the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana behind Elisa Balsamo and Lotta Henttala.
The 119-kilometre stage between Valencia and Sagunt offered little spectacle, with a bunch sprint deciding the winner. Labecki was well positioned in the final kilometre but could not prevent Balsamo and Henttala from passing her. "Of course, I would have liked to win here, but I am happy to have started the season like this", Labecki said.
"It's been a while since I last raced, so it feels good to be in contention for victory right away." Labecki, who had an unfortunate debut season with Team Jumbo-Visma, was particularly pleased to see her good form of recent weeks confirmed on the road. "My sprinting was still a bit rusty, but I am convinced it is improving every day. This is a step in the right direction."
"Coryn has had a tough season, so it is a nice boost to see her on the podium", race director Carmen Small said. "Of course, we were hoping for more, but third place is a good start. We wanted to control the race early and get Coryn up front in the sprint. That went exactly according to plan. We can definitely build on that in the coming days."