Team Sunweb’s Ellen van Dijk finished in 10th place at stage two of the Boels Ladies Tour today, as a solo leader made a late break and made it to the line.
It was a fast and furious start to proceedings at the first road stage of the Boels Ladies Tour today, with numerous attacks neutralised before two riders were eventually able to jump clear of the bunch. As that group were brought back, another attack went clear with one rider solo at the head of the race.
The race situation remained the same throughout with various riders enjoying brief stints at the head of the race, including Lucinda Brand and Ellen van Dijk who were involved in one of the larger groups that went clear. It was an attack from the race leader that came with 17 kilometres to go that was to decide the race, with the solo rider going on to take the victory. Team Sunweb’s Ellen van Dijk rounded out the top 10 in the sprint, ahead of another tough day in the Netherlands tomorrow.
Julia abandoned the race whilst still suffering from her collarbone injury. After crashing during the stage, Leah is ok and will start tomorrow’s stage.
Ellen said: “It was a very challenging stage with steep climbs following up on each other. We were well represented in the front with the main attacks, but we didn’t have an answer on the final attack from van Vleuten. I was behind it with three others, but we couldn’t close the gap. The girls in the bunch chased with all they had but unfortunately we couldn’t catch her anymore. The girls did a good lead out for me in the finish, but I came on the front a little early and simply didn’t have the legs to finish in a good position anymore. We’re still in good positions in the GC, but Annemiek showed today she’s in super form, so we have to think of a good plan to gain places.”
Team Sunweb coach Hendrik Werner said: Today was a tough stage with repeated hills. We expected a big fight and the race lived up to its expectations. On the penultimate climb a really strong group went clear and we had Ellen in the mix there. All but one rider came back and we then joined the chase to her. In the end we lost 15 seconds – we have to accept that she is in extraordinary shape at the moment but we will still fight until the finish.”