Van Vleuten retains her overall lead at the Boels Rental Ladies Tour after stage two sprintWed 30 Aug 2017
Yesterday’s prologue winner Annemiek van Vleuten successfully retains her overall lead in the Boels Rental Ladies Tour after stage two concludes with a bunch sprint.
The 132kilometre stage was animated by a breakaway escaping in the early stages and surviving until just two kilometres to go.
ORICA-SCOTT, with the help of the sprinter’s team controlled the distance to the leaders before finally putting on the pressure and making the catch ahead of a fast group sprint, with Gracie Elvin the highest finisher for the team in 13th position.
“On paper it looked like it could be a sprint today which we were more than happy with,” said sport director sport director Gene Bates. “We tried to give Annemiek the easiest day we could going into the individual time trial tomorrow.”
“The girls did a great job, we didn’t have to use many of our riders to keep things under control once the breakaway went. Gracie was lucky to miss a crash in the finish, she was looking in good condition and good for the sprint but we are just really happy she didn’t come down actually.
“Today could of been interesting but in the end it was fairly uneventful which was good for us. Now we are just really focused for tomorrow's TT and we will see what the outcome is and then we can make our plans and take things day by day.
“We have six super motivated and fit girls racing here and there is a really good feeling within the team so I'm sure it will continue to be a great tour for us.”
How it happened:
After a leg-opening short, fast opening prologue the riders arrived at the start ready for a lumpy 132kilometre road stage but with dark clouds and rainy conditions.
The day kicked off with a fast pace until one rider, Eri Yonamine (FJD), escaped the bunch and was able to open up a solo advantage of two minutes after 50kilometres of racing.
Two other riders eventually bridged across with 45kilometres remaining, however, the trio’s advantage quickly plummeted down to just one minute.
With the skies now clear and dry roads, the race leaders ORICA-SCOTT, along with the main sprint teams began to work to reel in the leaders ahead of a fast final.
The original escapee Yonamine wouldn’t give up without a fight and once again led the race solo in the final 10kilometres. The peloton sensed the danger and picked up the pace, finally making with catch with just two kilometres to go.
Wild took a convincing win with ORICA-SCOTT’s highest finisher Elvin in 13th place and ORICA-SCOTT in the leader’s jersey after the stage.
Boels Rental Ladies Tour stage 2 results:
1. Kirsten Wild (Cyclone Pro Cycling) 3:18
2. Maria Julia Gonfalonieri (Lensworld) ST
3. Lisa Brennauer (Canyon-Sram) ST
13. Gracie Elvin (ORICA-SCOTT) ST
General classification after stage 2:
1. Annemiek van Vleuten (ORICA-SCOTT) 3:24
2. Ellen van dijk (Team Sunweb) +0:05
3. Lisa Brennauer (Canyon-Sram) +0:07
Photo courtesy of TDWsport