Emma Johansson was forced to settle for second overall at the Route de France after leading the eight day French tour all week. The Swede won the prologue last Saturday and notched three stage podiums throughout the week. She supported Melissa Hoskins to an additional podium placing, giving ORICA-AIS one victory, four podiums and seven days in the orange leader’s jersey. Tiffany Cromwell overcame a major mechanical on the final stage to finish in tenth overall, giving the Australian outfit two in the general classification top ten.
The hilly parcours on the final day of racing proved as decisive as predicted. Linda Villumsen (Wiggle Honda) started the stage in second overall, 1” behind Johansson. The Danish-born Kiwi time trialed away from the field to take both the stage win and the overall classification. Her victory capped off a successful week for the British-registered squad, which saw Giorgia Bronzini (Wiggle Honda) win six straight sprints, giving the team seven victories over eight stages.
"Obviously it would have been nice to bring home the win after the team worked hard to defend the race all week. I’m disappointed, but I think about the last seven days and the last couple months and I know it’s been a good streak. I was in yellow (orange) all week. We won the prologue and came away with lots of podiums. It’s been a successful week overall although maybe not quite as good of week as what Wiggle had. There are a lot of other teams that didn’t come out of this race with anything, so I think we can proud of what we’ve done." - Emma Johansson