Stevens to miss Fleche Wallonne defense

American will not start the fourth round of the World Cup after crashing hard in March

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

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Defending champion Evelyn Stevens (Specialized-lululemon) will not start Wednesday’s Flèche Wallonne Féminine, her team confirmed on Monday in a statement on its website.

“With the team having much success with Evelyn Stevens’ gripping win over Marianne Vos in a nail biting sprint to the line last year, Specialized-lululemon goes in to this race with the goal to do a repeat on 2012,” the team said. “Unfortunately, Stevens will not be returning to defend her title this year after a serious fall during Padova, Italy, in March.”

Stevens crashed heavily in the Classica Citta di Padova on March 16, suffering lacerations and several broken teeth. The Olympian and former U.S. time trial champion has returned to training and is expected to return to racing soon.

Ellen Van Dijk, winner of the Energiewacht Tour earlier this month in The Netherlands, will lead the team alongside Lisa Brennauer and American Carmen Small. Tayler Wiles, Katie Colclough, and Loren Rowney will support them in the fourth round of the women’s World Cup.

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