Van der Breggen completes worlds double with road race title

Imola (Italy) (AFP) –


Dutch rider Anna van der Breggen on Saturday won the women's road race world title, to complete a double days after winning time-trial gold.

The reigning Olympic champion attacked 40km from the finish line, beating compatriot Annemiek van Vleuten and Italian Elisa Longo Borghini by 1min 20sec.

The 30-year-old Dutchwoman becomes the first woman to achieve the double in the same year since the French rider Jeannie Longo in 1995.

Van der Breggen dominated the race to reclaim the title she won in 2018 ahead of last year's winner Annemiek van Vleuten, after the 143km run.

It was the fourth title in as many years for the Netherlands, the flagship country for women's cycling.

Van der Breggen won the event for the second time after in Innsbrueck, Austria, in 2018.

She attacked on the steepest part of the second climb of the course, building up a lead of more than two minutes at the start of the fifth and final lap, controlling the situation to the line.

Van Vleuten, who was competing with a fractured left wrist which she hurt just nine days ago, narrowly edged the Italian in the final sprint for the silver medal.