Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour (st. 2)
Blues support Lourdes brilliantly as Basque rouleur resists inside 30-woman peloton after final hills; now 13″ behind new race leader Hammes (WNT). Biannic 13th as Bastianelli (TVC) wins from break.
A final gallop into a two-woman attempt helped the 2019 spring campaign’s most remarkable name, Marta Bastianelli (TVC), take victory on stage two of the 2019 Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour, a 113km course around Schleiz with a tricky, demanding second half.
The Movistar Team, which put into an excellent situation for GC one of its best names of the season, Lourdes Oyarbide, worked hard to keep her near the GC lead on Wednesday. Rodríguez, Fournier -both into the flat section before the climbs-, Teruel, Patiño and Biannic did an excellent job to keep the Basque inside the 30-woman selected field at the end, Lourdes now up to 4th place overall – 13″ behind race leader Kathrin Hammes (WNT), with Zanner (MAX) and Mathiesen (SUN) in between.
Oyarbide will face on Thursday’s stage three arguably her toughest test of the week ahead, with three climbs to the ‘Hankaberg’ (1.1km at nearly 9%) into a morning circuit around the village of Dörtendorf (94km), just two days away from the decisive ITT in Meiningen.
REACTION / Pablo Lastras:
“Our strategy today was trying to send Roxane into the sprint if she got through the climb in a good position – yet we also wanted to make the race hard for the rivals into the hills to reduce Lourdes’ list of rivals for the GC. And we didn’t do bad: Lourdes is now in fourth place, the fifth-spot rider is quite far behind. The goal, other than that stage victory we were aiming for with Roxane, was creating a better situation for Lourdes overall, and we at least achieved one of the two. I’d like to underline the ladies’ attitude all over the stage, the will to do well and support each other. Their enthusiasm is infectious, the spirit from last year’s exploits remains well alive.”
Cover picture (c): Velofocus