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Can anybody stop Anna van der Breggen at the World Championships?

Joe Robinson
11 Sep 2017

Anna van der Breggen sealed the Women's WorldTour title with ambitions now turning towards the World Championships

With the women's WorldTour coming to an end last weekend at the Madrid Challenge by la Vuelta in Spain, the dominance of Anna van der Breggen was confirmed as she secured the women's WorldTour. 

Despite not riding in the final race of the season, van der Breggen had done enough throughout the season to clinch the overall title thanks to wins at Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Amstel Gold and the Giro d'Italia femminile amongst others. 

Van der Breggen pipped Annemiek Van Vleuten of Orica-Scott and Katarzyna Niewiadoma (WM3 Pro Cycling) to the prize despite their stiff competition over the course of the year.

This followed a stand-out 2016 that saw the Dutchwoman take the road European Championships as well as gold in the Olympic road race and bronze in the Olympic time trial. 

This almost unstoppable form has made the 27-year-old odds-on favourite to take the rainbow jersey this month in Bergen, Norway. 

With a rolling parcour and a strong team behind her, van der Breggen will be entering the road race a marked woman with most fearing what she will be capable of during the race. 

With the race taking on 8 laps of a 19.1km circuit, the riders will crest the Salmon Hill on each time of asking. 1.5km in length averaging 6.4%, this test suits the punchy attributes of van der Breggen and could see her clinch her first rainbow jersey. 

It is not just the rolling parcour that plays into van der Breggen's hands either. It helps that her most fiercest rivals will be teammates come Saturday 23rd of September. 

The second best female rider this year happens to also be Dutch. Annemick Van Vlueten has been van der Breggen's biggest challenge recently yet both will be wearing the orange of the Netherlands together. 

Then we look to Marianne Vos, three-time World Road Race Champion, and arguably the greatest female cyclist of all time. Despite being almost back to her dominating best, Vos will most likely have to toe the party line for van der Breggen. 

Then chuck in world-class time trialist and domestique Ellen Van Dijk, and you suddenly realise the imperious nature of the Dutch team. 

Van der Breggen's biggest challenge to the title would have most likely come from Britain, with former champion Lizzie Deignan suited to the loops of Bergen. 

Whilst she plans to be fit for the race, surgery for a appendix removal back-pegged Deignan's preparation and will make it questionable as to whether she will enter the race in top form. 

Winner of the Madrid Challenge for la Vuelta Jolien D'hoore would be a notable threat if the race finished in a sprint, but the Belgian has already admitted the course is too difficult for her.

Other challenges cannot be ignored with Niewiadoma and American Coryn Rivera (Team Sunweb) more than capable of beating van der Breggen in a multitude of ways.

However, with the strength of the Dutch team and the flying form of van der Breggen, it is going to take an unforgettable ride to snatch a maiden rainbow jersey away from the flying Dutchwoman.

The majority of talk surrounding the World Championships has surrounded whether Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) will continue you his stronghold on rainbow and be able secure a record third consecutive men's elite title. 

However it is with van der Breggen and the women's elite race that we could witness the truly dominant performance.