Finishing Giro Rosa less than a week earlier with four stage wins to her name, CCC-Liv powerhouse Marianne Vos made another statement Friday at La Course by Le Tour de France by taking the win on challenging uphill sprint.
The sixth edition of the one-day women’s race during Le Tour de France, this year’s La Course was moved out of the Alps to Pau where racers competed on a hilly route totaling 121km. Each of five 25km laps consisted of the Côte de Gelos climb and a technical descent. The peloton began to fracture on the second lap when a group of 11 riders leapt off the front. Multiple attacks were all thwarted until five riders, including Ashleigh Moolman Pasio split off, pulling 20 seconds while the remainder of the pack was absorbed by the peloton. Their lead didn’t last long, as the bunch behind worked together to catch and overtake the breakaway with one rider going solo 24.5km from the finish. The leader managed to stay away until right inside the final kilometre, when the road pitched upward to a 17 percent grade leading to the finish line. After performing so well on difficult finishes during Giro Rosa, Vos made her move with confidence and launched a powerful sprint to pass the leader and take the win by a substantial three-second margin.
“The team left its mark today, the riders went through hell for each other to guide Marianne to victory in France as well,” said CCC-Liv sports director Jeroen Blijlevens. “Many teams had a strategy to get rid of Marianne on the way. But nevertheless, the team kept control over the race all the time. That deserves a big compliment.”
“I came out of the Giro Rosa with good motivation, and La Course was a good inspiration to give it an extra go,” said Vos. “When I saw it came down on the climb, I knew I had a chance. I went and just had the legs to continue.”