As always at We Love Cycling, we are delighted to celebrate any milestone that is helping to ensure women’s cycling gets the attention it deserves! And, of course, we will be keeping a very close eye on who is in the running for the infamous ŠKODA Green Jersey. It will indeed be a career-highlight achievement to be the first woman to sport the iconic speed-demon garment.
Although a different route from the one the men are currently racing, the women’s varied course includes several flat stages with some gravel sectors also thrown in here and there for good measure. Traditionally awarded to the strongest sprinter in the race, the contest for the green jersey will be a hotly contested one with so many worthy sprinters in the bunch. Let’s take a look at a few of the top contenders!
Lorena Wiebes of Team DSM
A standout sprinter who excels on flatter terrain and a large bunch finish, there’s a reason you keep hearing Lorena Wiebes in the same sentence as green jersey. A Dutch racer who currently rides for UCI Women’s WorldTeam Team DSM, the 22-year-old has ten wins in the professional peloton already this season. Moreover, Team DSM is set up for speed, so it seems almost inevitable that Wiebes will be positioned perfectly to claim a few stage wins.
Pfeiffer Georgi of Team DSM
Speaking of the speedy prowess of Team DSM, Pfeiffer Georgi is another one to watch out for! She sprinted to ninth place from the second chasing group on the road at Paris-Roubaix earlier this season, making a name for herself and claiming one of the standout results of her early career. After her top 10 finish, she exclaimed, “It was pretty crazy to be fighting for a top ten finish. I wasn’t expecting it today.” Might she just surprise herself once more?
Emma Norsgaard of Movistar
Another young rider who has been making a name for herself in the sprint field is Emma Norsgaard. Riding for Movistar, the Danish rider will be hoping for a stage win with a strong lead-out from her teammates. Norsgaard established herself as a power player by winning a stage of the Giro Rosa last year and has been sprinting to the top ever since.
Coryn Labecki (née Rivera) of Jumbo-Visma
With a well-established track record of speed, speed, speed, Coryn Labecki (née Rivera) will be hoping to get back to the top of her game riding for Jumbo-Visma at the biggest race of the year. An American racing cyclist of Filipino descent, she has historically outpaced Vos in the sprints. Nevertheless, their shared team’s strategy won’t be known until the women hit the course.
Marta Bastianelli of UAE Team ADQ
Marta Bastianelli of UAE Team ADQ started her 2022 season with a bang, securing a win in Vuelta CV Feminas following an explosive lead out from her brand new team. The 35-year-old has proven many times over that she can excel in the sprints, and with so many top-tier races under her belt, she’ll likely be among those able to keep a clear and calm head under the pressure of competing in the inaugural Tour de France Femmes.
Elisa Balsamo of Trek Segafredo
The reigning women’s road world champion, Elisa Balsamo, currently wears the rainbow jersey and is having a heck of an inaugural season with Trek-Segafredo. She claimed her second win at the Giro Donne earlier this month, solidifying her spot as a top contender for the green jersey at the Tour de France Femmes. Known for her strong finishes despite how tough the race has been, this acclaimed 24-year-old should have all the team support she needs to make a go at stage wins and the green jersey.
Lotte Kopecky of SD Worx
Having recently won her fourth consecutive time trial title at the Belgian Road Championships in Gavere, Kopecky covered the 23.1-km route in a winning time of 31:12 and beat runner-up Shari Bossuyt by 1:04 and third-placed Britt Knaven by 1:08. That’s what we call speed! Indeed, she’ll be one to watch when the women kick things off on the 24th!
With so much talent vying for green-jersey fame, you can expect a whole lot of fast, explosive and punchy racing when things get underway later this month! The flat opening two stages will kick things off, featuring the fastest sprinters in the women’s peloton battling it out. The countdown is on, so stay tuned for plenty of coverage and behind-the-scenes insight into this iconic event!