Van Der Breggen Returns To Competition

Anna van der Breggen will make a return to competition as a professional cyclist with Team SD Worx-Protime from 1st January 2025. Realising she still had the drive to win and unfinished business on the bike, the Olympic and two-time world road champion has signed a contract until the end of 2026.

Since 2022, Van der Breggen has served as team manager within the Dutch WorldTeam. In the past year, she noticed that she had renewed motivation to start racing again. “I am looking forward to pinning a jersey number on again!” Van der Breggen admitted.

Van der Breggen, who is now 34, realised that she is still of age to make a comeback now. “I also find my job as a team leader beautiful and challenging, but I realise that I can still do this job in ten years’ time. If I want to return as a cyclist, it’s now or never. I am looking forward to it immensely.”

“The motivation is great to get back on the bike after three years. It’s an exciting decision. If I didn’t feel the motivation, I would never be able to do this. That was also the reason why I decided to stop in 2021 after the Tokyo Olympics. I had been doing the same thing for years and felt I was tired. I was able to win a lot of competitions, but physically and mentally it also takes a lot out of you. After a three-year period where I looked at cycling from a different angle, I feel that the motivation and the will to cycle is completely back. I am excited to come back. To suffer on the bike again and to race with the team again. I realise now how much I love the game, the sport and the competition.”

“My mindset will be different. I will be less focused on wins in certain races or on having clear goals. After this long break, I feel it is a privilege to be able to ride races and be a cyclist again. For me, it is no longer so much about ticking off races or victories, but more about enjoying the sport and the competition. In the next six months, I will train a lot and work on my fitness. I am curious to see what level I can get back to. Of course I aim to become a better cyclist than in my previous period. Whether that succeeds always remains the question.”

“Do I still want to be a winner? Of course I feel competition in me. I always want to win. However, that doesn’t mean you always can win. That’s fine too, because that only makes the victories you have more beautiful. When you have to struggle to get somewhere, it just makes the rewards later more beautiful. In any case, for me it is a privilege to be a cyclist again soon in 2025.”

Team manager Erwin Janssen added, ”Last winter, it became clear to us that Anna was becoming motivated to cycle races again. We immediately responded to this with great enthusiasm. A champion like Anna van der Breggen is only born once every so many years. She managed to win almost every major race for our team between 2017 and 2021 and has become one of the best cyclists of all time. Anna was one of the culture bearers of our team during those years, but also later as team leader and helped shape the DNA of our team. With her commitment, she managed to take our team to the next level. We are confident that Anna will find the pleasure in cycling all over again and will also be of great value to our team as a cyclist again.”

Sports manager Danny Stam is excited to see what the future brings for Anna. ”We had already noticed for some time that during stage races Anna increasingly started cycling a bit herself. We are happy to have another world-class cyclist in the team with her. We hope she can grow to that high level again. We are confident about that. If Anna has doubts about something, she won’t do it. That certainly applies to this big step.”

World champion Lotte Kopecky said, “I am looking forward to racing with Anna in the coming years. I just joined the team when she quit and I actually regretted that at the time. If you see Anna still training with us at training camp, we didn’t just ride her off, on the contrary. I think it’s a good choice and she won’t regret it.”

Lorena Wiebes concluded, “I like the fact that Anna is coming back. She almost rode us off at times during training too. I think she will bring a lot of good things, in terms of atmosphere and also on a sporting level. I expect her to compete at a high level again soon and hopefully win enough races. I have always been able to work well with Anna as a sport director and I expect the same in the races. I am curious to see what it will be like in the peloton.”

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