Chaotic sprint finish concludes stage two of the Ladies Tour of Norway

Sat 19 Aug 2017

A chaotic bunch sprint concluded stage two of the Ladies Tour of Norway with yesterday’s second place finisher Gracie Elvin, ORICA-SCOTT’s highest place finisher in 25th.

After an action packed, aggressive day with multiple splits in the peloton due to crosswind and gravel sections, today’s second road stage once again finished with a mass sprint won by Chloe Hosking (Ale-Cipollini).

A late and dangerous move of four riders led into the final four kilometres, however, an unexpected bridge crossing blocked the road and the race was neutralised with the four leaders returning to the peloton. 

“It was a really aggressive day with the bunch splitting continuously,” said sport director Gene Bates. “The race kept splitting in the crosswinds but coming back together in the headwind sections pretty much all day."

“Once we entered the finishing circuits, that was the first opportunity for a dangerous breakaway and we just missed out there so we decided to ride for Elvin in the finish. The girls were always really well positioned.

“Elvin got completely swamped in the final and caught out of position. It was actually quite dangerous with a lot of road furniture in the final so we were happy to finish the stage safely."

Australian champion Katrin Garfoot slipped down one place on the general classification to fifth, with one challenging long stage remaining.

“Garfoot dropped down slightly overall but tomorrow is a big day, 160kilometres with some climbs and a really crazy finishing circuit so we are all in for tomorrow to try and take a stage win.” Bates concluded.

How it happened:

The second road stage at the Ladies Tour of Norway began actively with multiple attacks until one rider opened up a solo lead.

Silvia Valsecchi (Be-Pink) jumped away from the main peloton after approximately 25kilometres of racing and quickly opened up a maximum advantage of two minutes. 

With the peloton happy to leave the solo rider dangling out front, she hovered between one and two minutes for a number of kilometres.

Eventually the solo escapee was reeled in as fresh new attacks came thick and fast. The race continued to be active with sections of wind and gravel which caused the peloton to split into groups, however, the elastic never snapped and the peloton once again returned all back together.

In the final 20kilometres numerous riders tried to breakaway including ORICA-SCOTT rider Rachel Neylan with two others, but like previous attempts, they were unable to stay away.

Finally in the closing stages as the race entered the finishing circuits, four-riders created a dangerous move with around 15kilometres to go as they quickly opened up a 45second lead. 

As the quadruplet entered the final five kilometres their gap dropped to just 20seconds but in unexpected turn of events, a bridge crossing obstructed the breakaway and the peloton were able to make the catch. The riders waited before being able to continue the race but re-started all together.

Ladies Tour of Norway stage 2 results:

1. Chloe Hosking (Ale-Cipollini) 3:34
2. Marianna Vos (WM3) ST
3. Ellen van Dijk (Team Sunweb) ST
25. Gracie Elvin (ORICA-SCOTT) +0:01

General classification after stage 2:

1. Marianna Vos (WM3) 6:04
2. Jolien D’Hoore (Wiggle-High5) +0:12
3. Ellen van Dijk (Team Sunweb) +0:12
5. Katrin Garfoot ORICA-SCOTT) +0:19

Photo courtesy of TDWsport