Report: Women’s Tour of Britain Stage 1

World champion Lotte Kopecky stormed to the opening stage win of the 2024 Lloyds Bank Tour of Britain Women in a tight sprint finish against Letizia Paternoster in Llandudno.

Report: Women’s Tour of Britain Stage 1

World champion Lotte Kopecky stormed to the opening stage win of the 2024 Lloyds Bank Tour of Britain Women in a tight sprint finish against Letizia Paternoster in Llandudno.

Kopecky put her rainbow stripes on show with a fantastic display of power to take the first stage win, having tackled 142.4km from Welshpool to Llandudno and 2,276m of climbing.

Departing from Welshpool’s Broad Street in the heart of mid-Wales, Josie Talbot made the first significant move of the day, before an attack from Christine Majerus closed the gap.

Reaching the foothills of the first Queen of the Mountains, the formidable Llangynog climb averaging 5.3%, Connie Hayes launched the first move to increase the pace up the 6.1km climb, before being marked by Elena Cecchini. A furious display of power from Heidi Franz saw her take the first maximum points.

A small but strong group of riders, including Katia Ragusa, Millie Couzens, Amber Pate, Valeria Demey, Barbara Guarischi and Franziska Koch, took the lead with 70km remaining and forced a gap on the main peloton.

National Road Series leader Lucy Harris went off the front, powering her way to a lead of up to a minute, which was enough to earn her the Combativity Award, before Elinor Barker’s injection of pace from the peloton saw her caught up the second Queen of the Mountains, Ty’n y Llidiart.

Pfeiffer Georgi put in a huge kick approaching the top of the climb, but the national champion was chased by the Great Britain Cycling Team, with Lizzie Deignan taking the Queen of the Mountain ahead of teammate Anna Henderson.

The British duo continued to push over the top of the climb along with Letizia Paternoster, Georgi, Kopecky, Majerus, Victore Guilman, Ruby Roseman-Gannon and Eline Jansen, taking a lead of a minute and 14 seconds.

The intermediate sprint of the day saw Paternoster outsprint Kopecky for the bonus seconds in their first battle of the day, as the nine-strong group racked up a three-minute lead with just 10km remaining.

As the riders came into Llandudno’s promenade, it all led down to a tight sprint finish, with Kopecky firing on all cylinders before Paternoster wrestled the world champion to the line. A tense photo finish gave Kopecky the win ahead of the Italian, as Georgi finished in third and Deignan in fourth.

Speaking on her win, Kopecky said: “I’m not sure if I won and it took quite a while before we found out that I won, so it was a nice final finish. At moments it felt pretty slow because of the wind, however, I’m happy that I could get a break in the final climb.”

Deignan said: “I was happy with my form today. It was a strange race, almost nothing and everything. We would have liked moments of attack in the final finish, but with the headwinds stretch and the launchpads, we just had to do what we could. I think moving forward it will be a really open race, so hopefully a big breakaway could go, and we can use some of our other ideas and take other opportunities.”

Kopecky’s win puts her at the top of general classification and sprinter’s jersey, while her team DS Worx-ProTime sit in the lead for the team classification. Georgi’s podium finish granted her the Best of British jersey, while Deignan’s climbing antics was enough to secure the Queen of the Mountains category. 22-year-old Jansen finished in fifth place to secure the young rider’s jersey.

PRESENTED by Freewheel #localbikeshoponline | Madison

Overall: Leader is Lotte Kopecky
Young Rider Classification: Eilidh Shaw is 4th
Points: Lotte Kopecky
Queen of the Mountains: Lizzie Deignan

3. Pfeiffer Georgi
4. Lizzie Deignan
6. Anna Henderson
10. Lucy Lee (solo chase and held off the peloton, just!)
13. Elinor Barker
17. Alice McWilliam
21. Eilidh Shaw
25. Flora Perkins
28. Jess Finney
33. Jo Tindley
35. Kim Baptista
39. Milli Couzens
42. Abi Smith
43. Elynor Backstedt
52. Caitlin Dimbleby
56. Alice Wood
57. Grace Lister
58. Amy Gornall
63. Bexy Dew
69. Lucy Harris
71. Lucy Gadd
74. Connie Hayes
75. Zoe Langham
76. Neah Evans
78. Ruther Sheir
79. Abigail Plowman
80. Arianne Holland
83. Maddie Leech
84. Beth Morrow
86. Isabel Darvill



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