In just her second race of the season, Maura battled her way through a hectic finale and sprinted to a remarkable 6th at Le Samyn Des Dames against the worlds best. Racing with the US National Team, Maura and her teammates lined up for the 111.6 kilometer race from Quaregnon to Dour, prepared to tackle the famed cobbles and elements of the Belgian countryside.
It was an awesome day! I felt really good and was able to position myself well throughout. I made it into the front group every lap after the cobbles and after the final time through, there was only about 30 of us left – of the more than 150 starters. The last kilometer was a false flat and a hard, long power sprint. I was in perfect position with 250 meters to go, sitting on Amy Pieters’ wheel – winner of last weeks Omloop Het Nieusblad – but unfortunately the finish turned into utter chaos. It was the longest 200 meters ever, with people starting to box me in, so I had to fight to not get swarmed. At the end, there weren’t any teams left, so everyone was pretty much on their own. Emma Johansson, who went on to win, gained a couple seconds from attacking a hundred meters out but 3rd through 6th were really tight. Obviously, I’m bummed that I couldn’t fair better, but I’m still really happy with the result and hungry for more!