Italian Barbara Guarischi has won the Prudential Ride London Grand Prix last night in London with an emphatic sprint victory. Guarischi won ahead of Shelley Olds (Ale Cipollini) and Annalisa Cucinotta (Ale Cipollini) to take her second win in the last month of racing.
The criterium race around St James Park in central London was fast and aggressive. A constant high pace meant the many attacks were never able to stay away. The most promising move might have been with five laps to go when Lisa Brennauer had an advantage of ten seconds with Wiggle Honda rider Annette Edmonston. But this dangerous move was quickly brought back by the Ale Cipollini team.
Guarischi said "I saw one man say it's four laps to go but I looked at my Quarq and thought it's not possible, we will only have 40 minutes. But then two laps later I looked and saw my team all in front of me and I thought, we really are at the end!" German champion Trixi Worrack was the final lead out person for Guarischi. Worrack said "There were four riders just ahead of the bunch with two laps to go. Loren (Rowney) helped close the gap and then Lisa took over. She did a really long turn and then I took over at the last corner. I could see in the straight that Barbara was in second position and then even third position, the others had gone early, but then I saw Barbara passing them all."
"Trixi brought me through on the last corner and we were out there a bit long. But we knew that, and we knew it was a long straight and also a head wind. So I stayed smart and used the side of the Ale Cipollini lead out. I still went a little early and at one moment I thought, oh no, but I'm here now, so there's no point to lose time, there's only one way and that is to win, boom!" said Guarischi.
Guarischi after winning the opening stage of the Giro Rosa in early July, and now adding a win in central London to her palmares, will line up today Sunday 2 August in the UCI Women's Bochum World Cup in Germany.