Dutch team unveil phenomenal squad for women’s road race at 2021 World Championships

With a choice of the strongest riders in the world, leadership is a tricky debate in the Dutch team

Annemiek van Vleuten (left) and Anna van der Breggen at the Tokyo Olympics
Annemiek van Vleuten (left) and Anna van der Breggen at the Tokyo Olympics
(Image credit: ANP Sport via Getty Images)

The Dutch team has been revealed for the elite women’s road race at the 2021 World Championships in Flanders. 

Always amongst the favourites for any one-day race, the Netherlands boast three of the most dominant riders in the peloton - Marianne Vos, Annemiek van Vleuten, and Anna van der Breggen.

Along with Chantal van den Broek-Blaak, another former world champion, those four riders boast a combined 10 world titles across the road race and the time trial, while Van der Breggen currently holds both rainbow jerseys after winning the double in 2020. 

But with that much strength on offer, team leadership within the Dutch national team is always a tricky balance to strike as all four riders are fiercely competitive. 

The Dutch cycling federation has opted to take all four riders to Flanders for the 2021 Worlds, with Vos, Van Vleuten, Van der Breggen and Van den Broek-Blaak all racing in the road race. 

Van der Breggen and Van Vleuten will also compete in the elite women’s TT, along with Ellen van Dijk, and Riejanne Markus. 

National coach for the Dutch team, Loes Gunnewijk, said: “We are doing everything we can to take home the title again. Expectations are obviously high, but you start at zero with every championship. The starting position is good. We have a very strong block with which we want to drive an attacking course. The course in Flanders lends itself to racing early in the race and then we have a lot of irons in the fire with which we want to take control of the race. We will certainly be looked at, but we are used to that and will not be an obstacle." 

Vos, Van der Breggen and Van Vleuten all competed in the Olympic road race as team-mates earlier this year, with a miscommunication within the group resulting in Van Vleuten riding to a silver medal, believing she had won the race. 

>>> Remco Evenepoel, Wout van Aert and Lotte Kopecky headline Belgian squad for World Championships in Flanders

The 2021 Worlds are inspired by the cobbled Classics and will be based around the city of Leuven in Flanders. 

Supporting the potential leaders, the Dutch team will also consist of Lucinda Brand, Ellen van Dijk, Amy Pieters, and Demi Vollering.

Dutch squad for the 2021 World Championships

Elite women’s road race 

Anna van der Breggen
Annemiek van Vleuten
Chantal van den Broek-Blaak
Lucinda Brand
Ellen van Dijk
Amy Pieters
Demi Vollering
Marianne Vos

Elite women’s time trial 

Anna van der Breggen
Annemiek van Vleuten
Ellen van Dijk
Riejanne Markus 

Alex Ballinger
Alex Ballinger

Alex is the digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter and now as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output.

Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) and joining CW in 2018, Alex has covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. 

Away from journalism, Alex is a national level time triallist, avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.