Lauren competed the opening weekend of Omloop het Nieuwsblad and Omloop het Hageland over the weekend and showed encouraging performances moving towards the start of the WorldTour next weekend.
On Saturday, Lauren and Team Hitec Products were met with cold but dry conditions for the lap of the flanders region, with a max temperature of 7 degrees it was very different to the Aussie summer! Positioning is the key in these races and Lauren was right were she needed to be until a touch down on Petersburg put her in chasing mode, she bridged back to the front group over the next climb however was out of position for the next critical selection point at Molenburg climb. Eventually finishing a disappointing 28th.
“I was disappointed, I had good legs and I could have been in the mix for sure, but thats racing, I take a lot of confidence from today, I was feeling good and thats the most important thing to take moving forward”
Sunday was a 128km race around the Hageland region of Belgium. It was again a cold race that seemed a lot colder then 5 degrees with the bitter wind that blew through the peloton.
“I really wanted to have a good feeling after today, considering how I felt yesterday after the race, Today I was in the right place for all the splits and I felt good to follow Elisa Longo-borghini on the climb on the last lap, so Im happy with that today”
Unfortunately the move of six that formed on the last climb was short lived and an eventual bunch sprint emerged, where Lauren finished 17th, she was happy with the day’s work.
“Yes it was a good day today, I know now from the weekend that my form is just were it needs to be and with a little bit of luck I am confident to be in the mix in the bigger races”
Next up is Le Samyn on Wednesday, another semi-classic in Belgium before Lauren will travel to Italy for the first World Tour race of the year, Strade Bianchi in Sienna, Tuscany next Saturday.