Marianne Vos (CCC Liv) sprinted to victory in the second stage of the OVO Energy Women’s Tour at the Gravesend Cyclopark in Kent, to take the overall lead of the race following day two.
Vos took the win ahead of Lizzie Deignan (Trek Segafredo) and Sarah Roy (Mitchelton Scott) at the end of the 25 lap race, run off in hot and sunny conditions, despite the initial weather forecast.
The win, her fifth stage win in the OVO Energy Women’s Tour, but first since the 2016 Tour, makes her the most successful rider in the race history.
Speaking afterwards, Vos said, “I came from the back so I thought okay if I don’t go now I will be late so I will have to go and see if I can open up a gap and then I did but I felt okay now the legs are going to burn so I just kept going and I saw no wheels coming so that was of course a great feeling.”
The CCC Liv rider survived a mid-race puncture and bike change to move into a nine second lead in the race ahead of Lizzie Deignan, with Amy Pieters (Boels Dolmans) also on the same time. Having battled for numerous victories over the past decade, Vos believes that Deignan is one of the main threats to her overall lead.
“This is for her of course her home race and going to the next day’s she’s in great form, she’s always one to watch for GC, and the team is strong as well. They have a very strong team, we don’t fear anyone, but Trek is one of the teams that we are going to watch.”
Deignan takes over the HSBC UK British Cycling Best British Rider jersey as the leading home contender while defending champion Coryn Rivera (Team Sunweb) keeps the lead in the Eisberg Sprints jersey.
With a flat day at the Cyclopark, Christine Majerus (Boels Dolmans) retained the SKODA Queen of the Mountains jersey before the serious climbs of the2019 race begin in the Chilterns on Stage Three from Henley-on-Thames to Blenheim Palace.
The Oxfordshire stage begins at 10:30 and passes through Wallingford, Didcot, Wantage and Charlbury, covering 145.1 kilometres with an expected finish of around 14:35 in front of Blenheim Palace.