Lotte Kopecky is a professional cyclist from Belgium who specializes in road and track racing. She is a multiple-time national, European and World Champion on the boards whilst on the road she holds in her palmarès races such as the Tour des Flandres and Strade Bianche, whilst being one of the most consistent and successful classics riders.
Name: Lotte Kopecky
Born: 10 November 1995
Birthplace: Rumst, Belgium
Turned Pro: 2012
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Lotte Kopecky was born on the 10th November 1995 in Rumst, Belgium. One of the nation's most successful riders, she has mainly shown her talent through the one-day races where she has thrived in the most recent seasons. She currently has a contract with Team SD Worx until 2024.
Not only is the Belgian one of the most successful road riders in the peloton, she is also a very prominent figure on the track, where she has taken multiple national titles over her development ranks and Elite level. In 2016 she won the Omnium World Cup, became European Elite Champion in the Madison and under-23 champion in the Points Race and Omnium. In 2017 she was national champion in three different events and World Champion in the Madison with long-time colleague Jolien d'Hoore. In 2021 she was World Champion in the Points Race and in 2022 she's achieved several high-level wins, becoming World Champion in the Elimination Race and Madison (with Shari Bossuyt), and European Champion at Elimination and Points Races.
On the road her pro career began in 2014 with the Topsport Vlaanderen - Ridley team, her first under-23 year following two seasons already connected with the team. In this year she finished second in the national championships behind Jolien d'Hoore hinting at great talent from the start. 2015 was another rather calm here, having the exact same result and competitor at the national championships as her biggest result of the season.
That would change in 2016 with a move into Lotto Soudal Ladies however. Here Kopecky took her first pro win at the Trofee Maarten Wynants. She had gained a leading position in the team alongside some more top results, finishing 9th at La Course by Le Tour de France and 4th at the Lotto Belgium Tour, aswell as runner-up at the national championships for a third consecutive time. In 2017 she finished second in the race for her 4th time, however in the time-trial she raced at under-23 level and took the title. This year saw her finish 6th at Dwars door Vlaanderen and 5th at the Tour des Flandres, aswell as several other results in the classics which saw her as an headliner.
In 2018 Kopecky had another consistent season, with her first high-level win coming at the late Lotto Belgium Tour, where she finished in third place. She missed the first half of the season however, but would return to the spring classics in 2019 winning the Vuelta a la Comunitat Valenciana and finishing in the Top6 of the Ronde van Drenthe, Nokere Koerse, Brugge-De Panne and Gent-Wevelgem, aswell as other classics in the summer. Kopecky became Elite time-trial national champion, and was 3rd at the Tour of Chongming Island and 2nd at the Lotto Belgium Tour, besides winning the MerXem Classic and finishing 4th at the RideLondon Classique and European time-trial championships.
Following the pandemic break in 2020 she reconsolidated her time-trial title, and at the Giro d'Italia she rode a strong race which ended up featuring a win on stage 7. Despite short, her end of the season was very successful as she conquered the road race title at long last in Belgium, finished 4th at Brabantse Pijl, 3rd at the Tour des Flandres and Brugge-De Panne classic and 2nd at Gent-Wevelgem. Her results caught attention of other teams, and the Belgian signed with Liv Racing into 2021.
The collaboration was an instant success as she won Le Samyn early in the year. She's finished 4th at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Nokere Koerse and Brugge-De Panne, with a 2nd place at Gent-Wevelgem. She won a stage and finished 2nd at Thüringen Ladies Tour, became double national champion again and won the Lotto Belgium Tour right after, and rode into 4th place at the Tokyo Olympic Games road race. Her season would still see triumphs however at the Ceratizit Challenge by La Vuelta and the Trophée des Grimpeuses Vresse-sur-Semois.
In 2022 Kopecky was signed by Team SD Worx, in which she became part of the team's large array of world-class riders. The tactical advantage that was to be used benefited Kopecky massively, with her palmarès being significantly richer. Kopecky was the winner of the 2022 Strade Bianche, beating Annemiek van Vleuten in a close duel. Shortly after she beat the Dutch rider once again now at the Tour des Flandres. She would also go on to finish on the podium of the Ronde van Drenthe, Nokere Koerse and Paris-Roubaix Femmes, with an added 4th place at Gent-Wevelgem.
She departed from the spring to win at the Vuelta a Burgos Feminas, finishing 4th at the RideLondon Classique and win the national time-trial title. She finished 2nd in the points classification of the returning Tour de France Femmes, and achieved the same result at the Ceratizit Challenge by La Vuelta, benefiting from her sprinting abilities. Kopecky was a big favourite for the World Championships in Wollongong and almost sprinted to the win, but this time around a late move by Annemiek van Vleuten saw vengeance executed, and Kopecky would lead the chasing group into the finish line to finish in 2nd position.
Kopecky however raised her level even further in 2023 with the collective dominance of Team SD Worx. The Strade Bianche early in the year was a good example, where she finished second behind teammate Demi Vollering in a sprint as the duo dropped the rest of the competition. The Belgian thrived in the spring classics winning Omloop het Nieuwsblad and the Nokere Koerse as a build-up towards the Tour of Flanders where she took a strong solo win. Following that there were victories at the Veenendaal-Veenendaal Classic, Dwars door het Hageland, two stage wins and the GC at the Thüringen Ladies Tour and to wrap off another block of wins, a double national title at the national championships.
Then came the Tour de France Femmes where she won the opening stage and took the first yellow jersey. Teammate Demi Vollering took a huge GC win after a massive Col du Tourmalet ascent on stage 7, until then Kopecky led the entire race and she dropped to fourth on that day, not being a climber. However, a strong performance on the last day's time-trial saw her rise to second in the GC still. Two weeks later in Glasgow Kopecky did it again, going into the World Championships as the main favourite, and using her explosivity to ride into the rainbow jersey alone. Kopecky already made her debut winning with her new jersey, she won two stages and the overall classification at the Simac Ladies Tour, before concluding her season with a third place at the European Championships. On the track Kopecky became European Champion in the Elimination Race, and then World Champion in the Elimination Race and Points Race in Glasgow.
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