Lise Ménage and Victoire Berteau, two French champions with very different roles

Lise Ménage and Victoire Berteau, two French champions with very different roles
Lise Ménage and Victoire Berteau, two French champions with very different roles
Bretagne Ladies Tour, May 22 to 24

At Cofidis, we have been driving in red and white for a long time. But blue has just appeared on two jerseys, in the women’s team: that of Victoire Berteau, French Elite champion since June 24, 2023, and that of Breton Lise Ménage, crowned among the U23s on May 11.

They will be lined up together on the Bretagne Ladies Tour, starting this Wednesday. “It’s quite funny to have two French champions on the team,” laughs the Bretillian. It also shows the level of our team! » For the young cyclist (19 years old), who turned pro this year, “it’s always an honor to race with the French champion. I’m learning a lot from Victoire! »

“There are girls stronger than me on the team”

Roles in the team are clearly distributed. Victoire Berteau is the leader, with Hannah Ludwig, also protected on this Bretagne Ladies Tour. Lise Ménage plays, quite logically, the role of the teammate: “I want to do well in the time trial this Wednesday, but for the online stages, it will be all for my teammates,” says -she, without frustration: “It doesn’t bother me, because there are girls stronger than me on the team. If I had the opportunity to race for myself, I know I wouldn’t win, so I prefer to put all my strength into helping others! »

For Lise Ménage, trained at CV Plélan, this first season among the pros is one of “learning”: “Victoire taught me a lot about the technical aspect, positioning in the peloton and the automatisms to have. She doesn’t necessarily run to the front in slow moments, but when it counts, she’s always ahead! »

Victoire Berteau, who shared her room during the pre-season training courses, also reassured her about her first classics, notably during Ghent-Wevelgem, which she had to abandon: “I told her that it was normal to take sheet metal at the start of the season during the first year, smiles the Northerner. As a leader, I try to give him confidence. »

Berteau “not yet a 100% leader”

This costume is not always easy to wear, even when you have been a professional since 2019 and have won, on the track, three medals at the world championships and five at the European championships: “I am not yet 100% a leader, assures Victoire Berteau. I’ve only been one since this year and I still have difficulty asserting myself, not so much with my teammates but with myself, I still lack self-confidence. »

The runner, a real chance of a medal at the Olympics, works with a mental trainer to “rediscover (her) grain of madness”. She has not won again since her coronation. “I want to raise my arms in this beautiful jersey, but I’m not putting pressure on myself, especially since I’m coming from a training course at altitude. I just want to enjoy this last race with this beautiful jersey! » The last one, really? Victoire Berteau will certainly cut it until the French championship at the end of June. “But be careful, I’m not going to give it back easily,” she announces. I will fight to keep it, on a course that can suit me. » It seems that at Cofidis, we like blue more and more.

#France

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