The first and longest stage of this years’ tour ended with another stage win for Canyon Sram Racing. Tiffany Cromwell set an impressive attack at the last corner and managed to keep an advantage until the finish line. Cromwells’ teammate Lisa Brennauer kept the yellow Lotto Thüringen overall leader jersey.
Schleiz, 13th July 2017 (TRF)
After yesterdays 6km long prologue, todays stage 124,8km stage in and around Schleiz was already the longest one of this years tour. Furthermore, he stage was 2km longer due to a fire run in Saalfeld.
Having perfect conditions, a lot of sunshine and genial temperatures, the 106 riders raced through the first uphill and downhill passages in Thuringia. The bunch stayed together for quite a wile. But it was mainly the the American United Healthcare Team with their strong climber Tayler Wiles that set several attacks and made the race a fast one on the already challenging course. The American rider picked some important points for the overall mountain classification and the Opel mountain classification leader jersey. It was mainly Beate Zanner of the local maxx-solar LINDIG women cycling team, who tried to get some points as well. “I already know Taylor Wiles from last year and I tried to be at her back wheel before the climbs and mountain classifications. This succeeded and I was finally able to pass her on the last mountain sprint”, Zanner said about her strategy after the race. She has 6 points and is second behind Wiles in the mountain classification. Currently second in the overall classification, Amy Pieters (Nationalteam Netherlands) used the three sprint classifications to pick up some bonus seconds as well as points for the WNT sprint jersey. She was able to win the first intermediate sprint and also became second in the following sprints. At the last mountain sprint,36 km before the finish line, the riders picked up a higher pace again so that the bunch was reduced to 50 riders when they crossed the finish line to go on the short final lap. The group stayed together and everyone expected a masses sprint but Tiffany Cromwell attacked on the last corner, put three seconds between herself and the bunch and sealed the victory with a strong sprint to the line. “After the second last corner, we decided that the final really suits me. Trixi Worrack told me that I should try to attack before the last corner and so I stayed at the front and went into the corner as fast as possible. It was a really tough race and I didn’t expect that no one could follow me!” the rider of Canyon Sram racing said after her impressive victory. The overall leader Lis Brennauer was able to keep her lead and finished at the same timt as todays stage winner, her teammate Tiffany Cromwell.
Everyone is now looking forward to tomorrows stage that ends with a mountain finish at the Dörtendorfer Berg, also known as “Hanka-Berg”. The stage is 106km long, with four challenging 26,5km laps as well as three sprint and three mountain classifications.
LOTTO Thüringen Leader Jersey Lisa Brennauer (CANYON//SRAM Racing)
WNT Sprint Jersey Amy Pieters (Nationalteam Netherlands)
OPEL mountain Sprint Jersey Tayler Wiles (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling)
Sparkasse Best Young Rider Jersey Nina Buijsman (ParkHotel Valkenburg-Destil Cyclingteam)
IKK classic Jersey for the Best German Rider Liane Lippert (Nationalteam Deutschland) (as representative for Brennauer)
Saalfelder Brauerei Jersey for the Most Active Rider Ursa Pintar (BTC City Ljubljana)
Gotha adelt Jersey for the Best Non-Professional Rider (not worn in the race) Elizabeth Banks (Team Storey Racing)