AJ Bell Women's Tour of Britain UCI Women's World Tour Women's Road Race Cycling Events

AJ Bell Women’s Tour | Stage 1 Bicester to Banbury

Elisa Balsamo

PRESS RELEASE

MONDAY 04 OCTOBER 2021

MARTA BASTIANELLI SPRINTS TO FIRST-EVER AJ BELL WOMEN’S TOUR STAGE VICTORY IN BANBURY

Stage 1 Winner Marta Bastianelli

Former world champion Marta Bastianelli claimed her first-ever AJ Bell Women’s Tour stage victory in Banbury, Oxfordshire, on Monday following a perfectly-timed sprint.

Images by Chris Maher - Updated Daily Throughout the Race
Close Bunch Sprint into Banbury after 147Kms

Bastianelli (Alé BTC Ljubljana) managed to pass Chloe Hosking (Trek-Segafredo) and FDJ Nouvelle – Aquitaine Futuroscope’s Clara Copponi in sight of the line to take the win and the race’s first leader’s jersey of 2021.

Sigma Points Jersey Marta Bastianelli

Speaking after the finish Bastianelli said; “It’s a very nice win for me.  There are lots of people, lots of babies, for me it is good, because I think of my daughter.

 

“There was a crash with 1km to go, and luckily I did not crash but I am sorry for those that did.  I started the sprint in third position, and for me it was the maximum because my coach has seen me win sprints from there.

 

“The sprint was not easy because it is a little bit tougher and uphill, and I think it is not for the sprinters, but for me it is a good race and a good day.”

Start-line in Bicester

The 2007 World Champion headed into the final corner on Banbury’s South Bar Street in third position but on the gently rising road to the finish line it was Bastianelli who powered to the line.  Victory was the first for an Italian rider at the AJ Bell Women’s Tour since Stage Two of the inaugural edition in May 2014.

AJ Bell Women’s Tour leaves Bicester
AJ Bell Women’s Tour leaves Bicester

Top Brit was Hannah Barnes (Canyon SRAM Racing) in sixth while defending champion Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) finished 40th, 26 seconds down, after working for team-mate Hosking in the sprint.

Demi Vollering (SD Worx) takes the ŠKODA Queen of the Mountains.

Bastianelli also takes the Sigma Sports Points jersey while Nina Kessler (Team TIBCO Silicon Valley Bank) holds the Eisberg Sprints jersey and Demi Vollering (SD Worx) takes the ŠKODA Queen of the Mountains.

April Tacey

Talking to April Tacey Drops – Le Col s/b Tempur

 

How excited are you to be taking part in this year’s AJ Bell Women’s Tour? “I’m really excited about riding my first (AJ Bell) Women’s Tour. It’s home roads. I can’t wait to get racing.”

What stages are you looking forward to? “I’m looking forward to the Crit (Stage 2 circuit course in Wallsall) and the Time Trial (Stage 3 in Atherstone). I’ve done a lot of Crits as a Junior & the Time Trial I’ve been focusing with the new Ribble TT bike. It’s really nice & I’ve got a good position on that. I’m excited”.

 

After the race I asked her how the race went. “It wasn’t too bad. On the last Queen of the Mountain when they went hard – full gas – I was left in a little group. Hopefully later in the week I will have good legs”.

 

April finished 53rd at 3.02 down after stage one.

A tough day in the saddle for CAMS-Basso’s Becky Storey in her first Women’s Tour
AJ Bell Women’s Tour leaves Bicester
Stage One Top 20

1 31 BASTIANELLI Marta ALE ITA B:10″ 00″

2 3 HOSKING Chloe TFS AUS B:06″ ‘ ‘

3 62 COPPONI Clara FDJ FRA B:04″ ‘ ‘

4 121 GUTIERREZ RUIZ Sheyla MOV ESP ‘ ‘

5 23 CECCHINI Elena SDW ITA ‘ ‘

6 13 *BARNES Hannah CSR GBR ‘ ‘

7 92 BERTIZZOLO Sofia LIV ITA ‘ ‘

8 41 *NELSON Josie HPU GBR ‘ ‘

9 21 PIETERS Amy SDW NED ‘ ‘

10 154 KIRCHMANN Leah DSM CAN ‘ ‘

11 141 ROY Sarah BEX AUS B:03″ ‘ ‘

12 155 LABOUS Juliette DSM FRA ‘ ‘

13 24 MAJERUS Christine SDW LUX ‘ ‘

14 26 VOLLERING Demi SDW NED B:01″ ‘ ‘

15 22 BLAAK Chantal SDW NED ‘ ‘

16 61 DUVAL Eugénie FDJ FRA ‘ ‘

17 14 CHABBEY Elise CSR SUI ‘ ‘

18 122 BIANNIC Aude MOV FRA ‘ ‘

19 105 KESSLER Nina TIB NED B:06″ ‘ ‘

20 32 BUJAK Eugenia ALE SLO ‘ ‘

Janneke Ensing solo’s to the first Queen of the Mountain at Iron Down Hill
GC After Stage One

1 31 BASTIANELLI Marta ALE ITA 3h44’31” 00″

2 3 HOSKING Chloe TFS AUS 3h44’35” 04″

3 105 KESSLER Nina TIB NED ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

4 62 COPPONI Clara FDJ FRA 3h44’37” 06″

5 141 ROY Sarah BEX AUS 3h44’38” 07″

6 93 JACKSON Alison LIV CAN 3h44’39” 08″

7 26 VOLLERING Demi SDW NED 3h44’40” 09″

8 121 GUTIERREZ RUIZ Sheyla MOV ESP 3h44’41” 10″

9 23 CECCHINI Elena SDW ITA ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

10 13 *BARNES Hannah CSR GBR ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

11 92 BERTIZZOLO Sofia LIV ITA ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

12 41 *NELSON Josie HPU GBR ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

13 21 PIETERS Amy SDW NED ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

14 154 KIRCHMANN Leah DSM CAN ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

15 155 LABOUS Juliette DSM FRA ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

16 24 MAJERUS Christine SDW LUX ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

17 22 BLAAK Chantal SDW NED ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

18 61 DUVAL Eugénie FDJ FRA ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

19 14 CHABBEY Elise CSR SUI ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

20 122 BIANNIC Aude MOV FRA ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

21 32 BUJAK Eugenia ALE SLO ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

 

Full Results Stage One Bicester to Banbury PDF 01_Full_Results

With Ensing ahead… The Peloton are in no rush.

Stage Two of the AJ Bell Women’s Tour starts and finishes in Walsall tomorrow (Tuesday 5 October) and features 10 laps of a 10-kilometre circuit around the ŠKODA Queen of the Mountains climb of Barr Beacon.  The 102.2-kilometre (63.6-mile) stage starts from Walsall Arboretum at 11:30 and is due to finish on Lichfield Street in the town centre around 14:25.

Over Iron Down Hill & the Peloton are all together…
Anna Christian tries a solo break over the line for the first pass at Banbury. Seen heading back out of Town.
L-R Alison Jackson, Elisa Balsamo & Alice Barnes
Alice Barnes
A welcome to the AJ Bell Women’s Tour for World Champion Elisa Balsamo from Race Director Mick Bennett
Team Presentation in Bicester Stage 1
The fastest legs on the Planet for an Hour! Joss Lowden
Team Presentation in Bicester Stage 1
PRESS RELEASE - PRE RACE

SUNDAY 3 OCTOBER 2021

AJ BELL WOMEN’S TOUR RETURNS TO THE ROADS ON MONDAY 4 OCTOBER
Image SWPix

 

842 days after Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) won the last edition of the race, the AJ Bell Women’s Tour returns tomorrow (Monday 4 October).

 

Two days after her historic victory in the first ever women’s Paris Roubaix Deignan heads the start list as the race gets underway in Oxfordshire with a 147.7-kilometre (91.8-mile) stage between Bicester and Banbury.

 

In total 16 different nationalities are represented on the start line in the 89-rider field.  Britain is the most represented nation with 24 riders in the peloton.

 

A trio of riders – Hannah Barnes (Canyon SRAM Racing), Leah Kirchmann (Team DSM), and Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) – will be competing in their seventh edition of the AJ Bell Women’s Tour, having started and finished all six editions to date.

 

The youngest rider in the race is Alice Towers (Drops – Le Col s/b TEMPUR) at 18 years and 358 days, while Trek-Segafredo rider Trixi Worrack’s in one of the final races of her career at 40 years and 6 days.

 

This year’s AJ Bell Women’s Tour features its first-ever individual time trial, taking place in Atherstone on stage three (Wednesday 6 October), with the overall champion set to be crowned in Felixstowe on Saturday (9 October).

 

Double AJ Bell Women’s Tour stage winner Sarah Roy (Team BikeExchange) said; “VeloViewer has been great to see what the courses will be like this year. The stages look like it will be really fun and interesting racing across the whole week and the terrain really suits our team.

 

“I like that there’s a ‘short’ time trial this year as well. It’ll really sort out the GC which can open the racing up a bit differently for non-time trial riders.  It’s also been a special year with the Olympics and the first time we’ve had a really popular, strong stage race after the World Championships. I expect to see some great racing though, our peloton is relentless.”

 

Liv Racing’s Sofia Bertizzolo comes into the AJ Bell Women’s Tour fresh having missed Paris – Roubaix; “I don’t have a lot of experience in the Women’s Tour. It’s only the second time I’ve ridden it.

 

“I have studied the course and expect a very attacking race. The stage profiles don’t seem too difficult, so the attack might be worth it for those who are aiming for the general classification. The time trial could also be decisive for the general classification. I expect a fast race where everyone is sharp. The latter certainly applies to me. The last few weeks I have not ridden any races. But I’ve had good quality training sessions and I’m fresh and ready to go.”

 

The AJ Bell Women’s Tour is sponsored by AJ Bell, one of the UK’s leading online investment platforms, helping people invest for the long term via ISAs, pensions and general investment accounts.  It has a rich history of supporting elite level sport including badminton, cricket, rugby, squash and triathlon, and recently sponsored the men’s AJ Bell Tour of Britain in September, won by Wout van Aert

AJ_Bell_Womens_Tour_final_start_list Download PDF

About the 2021 AJ Bell Women’s Tour

Stages

Stage One Monday 4 October Bicester to Banbury 147.6km
Stage Two Tuesday 5 October Walsall to Walsall 103km
Stage Three Wednesday 6 October Atherstone individual time trial 16.6km
Stage Four Thursday 7 October Shoeburyness to Southend-on-Sea 117.5km
Stage Five Friday 8 October Colchester to Clacton-on-Sea 95.3km
Stage Six Saturday 9 October Haverhill to Felixstowe 155km

 

Competing teams

  • UCI Women’s World Teams: Alé BTC Ljubljana, Canyon SRAM Racing, FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope, Liv Racing, Movistar Team, SD Worx, Team BikeExchange, Team DSM, Trek-Segafredo
  • UCI Women’s Continental Teams: AWOL O’Shea, CAMS-Basso Bikes, Drops-Le Col s/b TEMPUR., Parkhotel Valkenburg, Team Coop – Hitec Products, Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank, Valcar-Travel & Service

 

Created by SweetSpot Group in 2014, the AJ Bell Women’s Tour is the UK’s first international stage race for women, bringing the world’s top riders to compete in Great Britain as a part of the UCI Women’s WorldTour.

 

The race, which has been won by the likes of Marianne Vos (2014), Lizzie Deignan (2016, 2019) and Coryn Rivera (2018), attracts an annual roadside audience of 300,000, as well as over three million fans through linear and online platforms.

Amy Pieters
Alison Jackson receives a bottle for the final Banbury Circuit on the LH Side here