Jolien D’hoore wins OVO Energy Women’s Tour opener in Suffolk
Jolien D’hoore opened up her 2018 OVO Energy Women’s Tour just as she left off in London in 2017 by sprinting to victory at the head of a world-class field in Southwold, Suffolk on Wednesday.
The Mitchelton-SCOTT rider headed to victory at the seafront finish ahead of former World Champion Marta Bastianelli (Alé Cipollini) and Coryn Rivera (Team Sunweb) to pull on the first OVO Energy Green Jersey of the 2018 race.
D’hoore, who broke her collarbone three weeks ago, was given a perfect lead out by her team-mates out of the final corner with 340 metres to go to take her third win in the race, following victories at Clacton (2015) and London (2017).
“Even before today’s stage I wasn’t sure where I was at with my form,” said D’hoore. “But the team had 100% trust in me and they gave me a perfect lead out going into the finish. It’s really great to start with a win, the pressure is off now.”
“The stage was pretty flat and everyone knew that it was going to come down to a sprint, but it got pretty nervous and hectic going into the final and thankfully I was in a really good position on the last corner.
“I started my sprint a little early but managed to hold on and it worked out really well in the end. We had a plan going into the stage and we struck to it perfectly. The finish was quite tricky going into the wind and slightly uphill, but it couldn’t have gone any better.”
D’hoore also takes the Breast Cancer Care Points jersey thanks to her win, while the Boels-Dolmans team claimed both the SKODA Queen of the Mountains jersey with Christine Majerus and Eisberg Sprints jersey through Amy Pieters. WaowDeals Pro Cycling’s Dani Rowe finished the stage as the top Brit overall in fifth and so took the Adnams Best British Rider jersey, in the hometown of the Suffolk brewer.
Mitchelton Scott team manager Martin Vestby described the opening day as the “perfect start.” He added: “It’s a true team victory today and everyone was involved. We will do our best to hold onto the green jersey tomorrow, but it is a completely different stage with lots of climbing and for sure it will be tough.”
Stage Two sees the OVO Energy Women’s Tour return to Northamptonshire for the fifth time with a 143-kilometre stage from Rushden to Daventry. The key feature is a double ascent of Newnham Hill, which measures 1.5 kilometres in length at a six per cent gradient. The second of the climb culminates just three kilometres from the finish and is likely to prove decisive in the outcome of the stage.
Words by Sweetspot, Images by Chris Maher.
The Women’s Tour Official Site
Stage 1 Top Ten
1 71 D’HOORE Jolien 00″ MTS BEL B:10″
2 82 BASTIANELLI Marta ‘ ‘ ALE ITA B:06″
3 21 RIVERA Coryn ‘ ‘ SUN USA B:08″
4 61 BRONZINI Giorgia ‘ ‘ CPC ITA
5 12 *DIDERIKSEN Amalie ‘ ‘ DLT DEN
6 101 VOS Marianne ‘ ‘ WAD NED
7 41 FOURNIER Roxane ‘ ‘ FDJ FRA
8 56 WILD Kirsten ‘ ‘ WHT NED
9 2 BARNES Hannah ‘ ‘ CSR GBR
10 131 GUARISCHI Barbara ‘ ‘ TVC ITA
Stage Winner – 71 D’HOORE Jolien Mitchelton Scott BEL
Combativity award – 111 ANDERSEN Susanne Hitec Products – Birk Sport
General Classification OVO ENERGY – 71 D’HOORE Jolien Mitchelton Scott BEL
Points BREAST CANCER CARE – 71 D’HOORE Jolien Mitchelton Scott BEL
Queen of the Mountains SKODA – 14 MAJERUS Christine Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam LUX
Sprints EISBERG – 15 PIETERS Amy Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam NED
Best British ADNAMS – 105 ROWE Danielle Waowdeals Pro Cycling Team GBR
Best Team OVO ENERGY – Waowdeals Pro Cycling Team
General Classification after Stage 1
1 71 D’HOORE Jolien 00″ MTS BEL 3h14’29”
2 21 RIVERA Coryn 02″ SUN USA 3h14’31”
3 82 BASTIANELLI Marta 04″ ALE ITA 3h14’33”
4 15 PIETERS Amy 05″ DLT NED 3h14’34”
5 105 ROWE Danielle 08″ WAD GBR 3h14’37”
6 81 HOSKING Chloe 09″ ALE AUS 3h14’38”
7 61 BRONZINI Giorgia 10″ CPC ITA 3h14’39”
8 12 *DIDERIKSEN Amalie ‘ ‘ DLT DEN ‘ ‘
9 101 VOS Marianne ‘ ‘ WAD NED ‘ ‘
10 41 FOURNIER Roxane ‘ ‘ FDJ FRA ‘ ‘