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Ellen van Dijk dreams of a solo win in Roubaix

It’s an important time of the season for Ellen van Dijk. Dwars door Vlaanderen and the Tour of Flanders are next on the menu- two scoots she has earned before- and after that, hopefully, are likely to be the first women’s Paris-Roubaix. Aged 34, the onetime macrocosm term inquiry champion is still as ambitious and passionate as ever.

“I love race in Flanders, ” she says. “The racing is always hard-handed. There are always cobbles and advances to make a difference when you are not a super-light climber like I am. There is nothing like scooting in Flanders. The atmosphere is absolutely unique because the hastening is ingrained in the culture.”

Ellen van Dijk is one of the most significant riders in the peloton. Tall and muscular she has absolute power that is not matched by many. She was instrumental in countless victories from her teammates like Coryn Rivera’s Tour of Flanders win in 2017, but the strong Dutchwoman has an affecting palmares herself. She recently lent a fourth Healthy Ageing Tour win to that palmares. As she often does, she laid the foundations with a strong time trial.

Van Dijk on her room to victory in the recent Healthy Ageing Tour time trial.

“Due to the storm[ at the Healthy Ageing Tour ], we couldn’t race our time trial bikes which was a big setback to me ,” Van Dijk said.” I learn a lot on the time trial bike and that would have given me a really big advantage. It was a bit of a mental challenge but in the end I was happy with my watts. It corroborated I had done a good wintertime period of training .”

The time trial is a discipline that is close to her mettle. You can often find her duelling the wind on her epoch inquiry bike on the Lek river dikes near her hometown of Woerden, in the centre of the Netherlands. In 2013 she became TT world champion in Florence, averaging almost 48 km/ h on a flat course. Eight years later she wants the rainbow jersey back.

“I am really looking forward to the world championships in Belgium this year ,” she says.” It is a big goal for me. It’s a flat track with hardly any turns. It’s a route for ultimate capability. That gives me an advantage. I feel right than I did last year. People often ask me about my job because of my age[ she simply turned 34] but I am still very ambitious and have so much passion for my work .”

Thanks to reigning champ Anna van der Breggen, the Netherlands get three starting residences at the world championships but at the Olympic Games in Tokyo the Dutch will exclusively have two residences. Anna van der Breggen, Annemiek van Vleuten, Ellen van Dijk. It’s an impossible choice for national instruct Loes Gunnewijk.

“The selection will be made in May ,” Van Dijk says.” Since the world countries championships we haven’t done a occasion test to show what we are capable of. And there won’t be one before May either. The last-place experience the three of us are available on a period trial together is long ago. I can only try to be ready and then it’s up to Loes to decide. It’s out of my hands. It’s one of the things I earned from the COVID era: “youve got to” simply undergo the situation.”

Ellen van Dijk praises Anna van der Breggen at the 2020 World Championships in Imola.

Before that all-important decision is manufactured for Van Dijk’s Olympic and rainbow dreams, she’s got other more immediate points. She’s helped to show that her Trek-Segafredo team is one of the squads to beat in the upcoming scoots. Dwars door Vlaanderen and the Tour of Flanders, both deem this week, are important scoots for Van Dijk. She’s won both hastens before- Dwars door Vlaanderen twice- after superb solo endeavours. The week after Flanders is Paris-Roubaix.

The first edition for women has already been postponed twice and amid surging COVID-1 9 quantities in France the race might face a third adjournment. Van Dijk has had Roubaix on her subconsciou since ASO announced the addition to the women’s calendar.

Ellen van Dijk causes the direction at Strade Bianche earlier this year.

“If I could win that one solo as well … ” she says. “I hope the scoot will go ahead. I discovered there are lobby activities going on to manufacture the race happen. We chat about this as a squad of course but I have mingled feelings. I don’t want to make it seem that we as equestrians exclusively think about ourselves, that razzing Paris-Roubaix is so much more important than what’s happening in the world right now.

” I don’t want to come across as reviewing I am more important than the people actually suffering from COVID-1 9 or from loss. It’s a bit of a quandary, to be honest.”

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Trek-Segafredo has several pre-race favorites on the team for Roubaix. Van Dijk, life cyclocross endorse Lucinda Brand, and WorldTour winner Lizzie Deignan have done several recon journeys since October.

“I reckon Ina[ Teutenberg, the boasts administrator] knows every cobble by now, ” Van Dijk chortles. “The first time on the cobbles at Arenberg I utterly hated it. I thought to myself’ do I got to find this pleasant ?’ It makes some getting used to and now it becomes more fun every time we are out there. The race breathes gallantry. It’s always been amazing to see the men race this iconic race. The women’s race has now become a bit of a promotion. Everyone is talking about it.”

The women’s Paris-Roubaix will be much shorter than the men’s version but will include a large share of all the iconic cobbled spheres in quick succession.

“It will be a race of attrition where simply the most significant equestrians remain ,” Van Dijk says.” It’s likewise about prosperity and not coming mechanical controversies. Ina has been so enthusiastic and that is truly epidemic. Everyone in the team is involved and acts hard to give us the best equipment. I hope to be there with the very best riders at the end. My ultimate race scenario? A solo win on the velodrome.”

Van Dijk in action at the Dutch season inquiry championships in 2011.

Van Dijk has been around for a while. She had begun in 2006 at a squad with an iconic specify: Vrienden van het Platteland (” Friends of the countryside “), a squad where she was paid 150 Euros a month. In 2009 she affiliated the first women’s cycling superteam, HTC Columbia. In a recent row for Fiets Magazine she described how that process went.

“I felt forceful and questioned the manager for a little more than I got at Vrienden van het Platteland. The manager was speechless for a while and then told me:’ Ellen, our minimum is 20, 000 Euro a year.”

She describes how her young teammates like first time pros Shirin van Anrooij and Elynor Backstedt earn about 20 times more than she did. She likes to coach them a little about its own history of the development of women’s hastening;” like a grandma”, she writes in Fiets.

“It’s good that Trek-Segafredo committed to paying everyone the minimum wage, ” she tells me. “They set an example that’s already been followed by BikeExchange. This is the way it should start but we must also realize that women’s cycling is not at a position yet[ where everyone can pay minimum wages ]. There are now world-renowned equestrians on other units “whos got” less than our first-year pros. That is not a stable situation.”

Van Dijk feels that the development of women’s cycling can never go too fast. With a base salary everyone has the option to reach their full potential. The position is improving and everyone becomes more professional. However, “shes been” panics the balance of the boast will be off.

“It’s good to have a salary that you can live off and to have all the facilities you need to become a better rider but if compensating our wages meant that the team can’t afford the other facilities developments in the situation becomes unstable too ,” she says.” You can’t regulate that the progress steadily moves upwards but I also feel that sometimes “youre supposed to” do that additional pace[ like Trek-Segafredo did] to stimulate the others to pick up the pace .”

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