The women’s Strade Bianche was disrupted by an errant horse that found itself on the road ahead of the race leader.
The animal was seen galloping along the Colle Pinzuto gravel sector during the race, causing surprise and alarm among the riders.
Demi Vollering was caught behind the horse, which found itself between the rider and the TV motorbike, which captured the footage during the live coverage of the race.
Thankfully the race was unaffected, with no crashes being caused.
However, the horse fell on its side, and was in clear distress.
The noise and raucous of the passing race, with its many motor vehicles that accompany the riders, can be a stressful situation for animals.
It’s a relatively common sight to see dogs occasionally run out to the road, escaping from their owners’ leashes, but not often has a horse been seen on the road.
Annemiek van Vleuten saw the animal during the race, and was as surprised as everyone else. “
“I saw a horse, it was crazy, an escaped horse,” she said, laughing, when asked about the incident at the finish. “But it was not bothering us”
Despite the disruption, Vollering managed to stay composed, and went on to win the race.
After being joined by her SD Worx teammate Lotte Kopecky, the pair managed to work together to catch up with the lone leader, Kristen Faulkner (Jayco-AlUla).
Upon arriving together at the finish, the two riders sprinted for the win, with Vollering coming out on top with a superior bike throw.
That shriek from Demi. Chilling stuff pic.twitter.com/FJB1FCX3V9March 4, 2023
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