The women raced into Leamington Spa while the Dauphine FINALLY arrived at the mountains. Both races finished with a sprint: one a full-gas classic bunch effort, the other a four-up climber doozy to the line. Read on.
Dauphine Stage 6: Parc des Oiseaux – Villars-les-Dombes to La Motte-Servolex, 145.5km
Le Mont du Chat delivered the stage we all hoped for. The brutal ascent (8km averaging at 10%) a verdant backdrop for some aggressive climbing which saw Astana duo Fabio Aru and Jakob Fuglsang out front to be joined by Chris Froome (Sky) and BMC’s Richie Porte. The descent was one for the ages. Bend after bend negotiated at eye-watering speed that required nerves of steel to even watch. The foursome belted into the finish to provide one of those crazy climber’s sprints we love. Froome launched first, drifted off his line impeding Porte leaving Fuglsang to charge up the centre of the road and snatch victory by a bike throw and the width of a wheel rim. While Birdsong dedicated his win to the late Michele Scarponi, Lil’ Richie pulled on the leader’s Jersey. He holds 39secs on Froome, with Fuglsang in third at +1:15mins.
This is the classy Dane’s first win for his Astana team, and his first at WorldTour level. Take a moment for that to sink in while I dance around and bedeck VeloVoices Towers with all the Danish bunting I can lay my hands on #IAMEXCITE #FAINTS
Bonus video because the descent was THAT GOOD. Primed to go as the riders crest the top of the climb and SWOOOOOOOP
The last word (though his tour-de-force on the cobbles in Tour de France 2014 might be my favourite)…
Full report at Cycling News
OVO Energy Women’s Tour Stage 3: Atherstone to Royal Leamington Spa, 151km
A thrilling day of full gas attacks and chases ended with the first big bunch sprint of the race and a win for Ale Cippolini’s Chloe Hosking The Aussie powerhouse came off the wheels in the last 100m and blasted past Alice Barnes (Drops) on the uphill drag. Sunweb’s Ellen Van Dijk rounded out the podium, the bonus seconds moving her into second on GC at 1:43mins behind Kasia Niewiadoma (WM3 Energie). Teammate Marianne Vos, who had been second on GC, crashed heavily in the finale and has broken her collarbone – we wish her a fast and speedy recovery.
Keeping it in the family…
The Barnes sisters have made the Best British rider jersey their own. After a stint in it on stage one, second on the stage was enough for Alice Barnes of the Drops team to snatch the Best British rider Jersey from the shoulders of older sister Hannah (Canyon SRAM). They’re on the same time, so expect more fireworks from this pair.
Full report at Race website
Header image: Jakob Fuglsang PHILIPPE LOPEZ/AFP/Getty Images