Video: Johansson and Ratto focus on future after netting medals in world road race championships
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Monday, September 30, 2013

Video: Johansson and Ratto focus on future after netting medals in world road race championships

by Shane Stokes at 7:54 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Interviews, World Championships, Video
Riders were closest to a dominant Vos

Emma JohanssonMedallists behind Marianne Vos Emma Johansson and Rosella Ratto are both looking towards the future and hoping to be able to take the rainbow jersey themselves in years to come.

Johansson and Ratto were the nearest to Vos in last week’s women’s world road race championships, crossing the line fifteen seconds behind the dominant Dutchwoman, who took off on the final lap to defend the title she won last year.

Vos’ team-mate Anna van der Breggen was best of the rest, a further eighteen seconds behind.

Both Johansson and Ratto know that they were two of the strongest riders in the race, and draw on that thought as encouragement for future editions.

“Obviously, I also want that rainbow jersey, it’s not a secret I think,” said Johansson. “I think everyone would like to have that one, one day. But she [Vos] is an amazing rider and she is very hard to beat.”

Johansson has had a very good season and took over as world number one in August. She appears to have narrowed the gap somewhat, but didn’t have any answer when Vos put in her big move with five kilometres to go, attacking hard on the final climb of Via Salviati.

Frustrated not to be able to go with her rival, Johansson thinks back to the other race this year and reminds herself that Vos is beatable.

“I’ve done it a few times this year, but today she was just stronger. The way they played it as well with Anna Van Der Breggen, she was very strong today. I knew it was going hard to beat her. When she is better you can’t say anything else than congratulations.

“I’m still happy,” she added, recognising that silver behind Vos is still a very notable result.

Johansson and Ratto chased but once the gap was there, it was always going to be very hard to close it. She said that they tried, but that the momentum went out of the chase before the finish.

“I know that Marianne’s jump is really strong and I know that the moment when she sits down is probably the biggest moment for me to try and catch her back,” she said of the moments after Vos’ big attack.

“I gave it a real try and together with Rosella we sort of gave everything we could. We did come a bit closer but then, it was still too much of a gap. When Rosella didn’t want to take over on the last k, I realized that alone I couldn’t do it. Then it was more to focus on the second place.”

She speaks at length about the race in the video below.

Ratto is considerably younger than both Vos and Johansson, being seven and eleven years their junior, and has shown that she has the potential to dominate the sport in years to come. She should naturally get stronger over the next few seasons, gaining as she matures, while many of her rivals will show a decline past thirty years of age.

Rossella RattoShe shone as a junior, netting first in the European road race and time trial championships in 2011.

Unlike men’s racing, there is no intermediate under 23 level for female competitors, making the step up from junior to elite a difficult one. Ratto has managed that jump admirably, and was asked about the difference between racing at those two levels.

“Last year I got sixth in the World’s and now third. What I can say is that at least for an Italian rider the big gap is due to the races we have in the junior [category], because we have small laps [circuits – ed.] and we have short climbs.

“When you reach the elite category there’s almost [not] any race completely flat and then the speed is higher, and there are more riders who are able to attack.”

She emphasises the importance of riders not becoming discouraged. “It’s really a matter of continuing training in a good way and also to continue when you don’t get results. Then maybe, slowly, you can reach the top.”


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