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Vos wins La Course by Le Tour de France

Marianne Vos (CCC-Liv) won the La Course by Le Tour de France with a powerful attack on the last climb in the centre of Pau. Vos passed Amanda Spratt (Mitchelton-Scott) at the top of the short, steep climb after Spratt had been on a solo attack for the last of the five 25-kilometre laps.

Vos powered to the finish and won with a three-second gap to Leah Kirchmann (Team Sunweb) who beat Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Bigla) in the sprint for second place.

“My first La Course win was five years ago, to win it again now, on a different circuit, is a very special feeling,” said Vos.

“I came out of the Giro Rosa with good motivation, and La Course was a good inspiration to give it an extra go. The break of Amanda Spratt was pretty dangerous, so my teammates had to do a lot of work to bring it back. When I saw it came down on the climb, I knew I had a chance. I went and just had the legs to continue.”

How it happened

Having been held in the Alps for the previous two years after three editions on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, race organiser ASO moved the sixth edition of La Course to Pau. The women did five laps of a hilly circuit of 25 kilometres south of the city that included the Côte de Gelos followed by a rolling section, a technical downhill and the Côte d’Esquillot. After another descent, there were 11 flat kilometres to Pau where the Rue Mulot, a 185-metre, 17-percent wall on the final kilometre, meant this was a race for puncheurs. Due to a neutral section at the start of the race, the distance was 121 km.

A break of eleven riders formed on the first lap, with most of the big teams represented. The second time up the Côte de Gelos, four riders tried to bridge to the front but were quickly reeled in again by the peloton. When the breakaway’s advantage increased to 1:45 minutes after 60 kilometres, this prompted WNT-Rotor and Lotto Soudal Ladies – both teams had missed the break – to take up the chase and reduce the gap.

Audrey Cordon-Ragot (Trek-Segafredo) attacked from the breakaway but her solo move was over when Annemiek van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) upped the pace on the third ascent of the Côte de Gelos, reeling in all escapees and reducing the peloton to about 50 riders.

The following kilometres were hectic with several unsuccessful attacks. On the Côte d’Esquillot with 37 km to go, an attack by Anna van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans) led to a front group of 11 riders that also included Van Vleuten, Vos, Spratt, Uttrup Ludwig, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (CCC-Liv), Ane Santesteban (WNT-Rotor), Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM), Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb), Soraya Paladin (Alé Cipollini), and Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo).

This group of favourites struggled to work together and after several attacks, five riders got away while the other six were caught by the peloton. Spratt, Paladin, Moolman-Pasio, Uttrup Ludwig, and Brand had a lead of up to 20 seconds but the chase work done by Boels Dolmans in particular had reduced this to only a few metres at the bottom of the Rue Mulot.

Spratt kept the move going over the steep climb and pulled away from Moolman-Pasio and Uttrup Ludwig on the following descent, going solo 24.5 kilometres from the finish. After a regrouping behind, nobody took charge in the peloton and Spratt carved out an advantage of more than 30 seconds in the first half of the rolling final lap.

Brand launched an attack into the technical descent and was followed by Vos and Van Vleuten but this group was caught again after Uttrup Ludwig and Paladin bridged on the Côte d’Esquillot. Spratt still held a 26-second lead at the 10-kilometre mark but by now CCC-Liv and Team Sunweb had committed to reeling her in.

Despite Van Vleuten trying to disrupt their chase and Spratt giving everything she had, the Australian climber’s advantage gradually came down. Entering the final kilometre, Spratt was still 12 seconds ahead but the peloton could see her.

On the steep Rue Mulot, Vos made her trademark attack, passing Spratt at the top and going on to open a three-second gap to the rest in the last 350 metres to the finish. Kirchmann won the sprint for second ahead of Uttrup Ludwig.

Van Vleuten finished in seventh place and defended her lead in the UCI Women’s WorldTour classification. Marta Cavalli (Valcar Cylance) continues to lead the UCI Women’s WorldTour U23 ranking.

Elise Chabbey (Bigla) was part of the early breakaway and first over the Côte de Gelos twice, enough to win the race’s Queen of the Mountains classification. For her long-range solo attack, Spratt was awarded the combativity prize.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marianne Vos (Ned) CCC-Liv3:15:20
2Leah Kirchmann (Can) Team Sunweb Women0:00:03
3Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
4Lucinda Brand (Ned) Team Sunweb Women0:00:04
5Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (RSA) CCC-Liv0:00:06
6Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo Women
7Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Mitchelton-Scott Women0:00:07
8Soraya Paladin (Ita) Ale Cipollini
9Ane Santesteban Gonzalez (Spa) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
10Anna van der Breggen (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
11Demi Vollering (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
12Floortje Mackaij (Ned) Team Sunweb Women
13Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-SRAM0:00:10
14Rachel Neylan (Aus) Team Virtu Cycling
15Sofie De Vuyst (Bel) Parkhotel Valkenburg
16Eugenia Bujak (Slo) BTC City Ljubljana
17Janneke Ensing (Ned) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
18Paula Andrea Patiño Bedoya (Col) Movistar Team Women
19Katharine Hall (USA) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam0:00:13
20Urska Pintar (Slo) BTC City Ljubljana0:00:14
21Hanna Nilsson (Swe) BTC City Ljubljana
22Evita Muzic (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
23Eri Yonamine (Jpn) Ale Cipollini
24Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women
25Brodie Chapman (Aus) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
26Julie Van de Velde (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
27Nikola Noskova (Cze) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
28Erica Magnaldi (Ita) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
29Annika Langvad (Den) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
30Elise Chabbey (Swi) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
31Riejanne Markus (Ned) CCC-Liv0:00:24
32Juliette Labous (Fra) Team Sunweb Women0:00:28
33Malgorzata Jasinska (Pol) Movistar Team Women0:00:43
34Tayler Wiles (USA) Trek-Segafredo Women
35Pauliena Rooijakkers (Ned) (CCC-Liv)0:04:03
36Elizabeth Banks (GBr) Bigla Pro Cycling Team0:05:00
37Jeanne Korevaar (Ned) CCC-Liv0:05:04
38Ruth Winder (USA) Trek-Segafredo Women0:06:49
39Karol-Ann Canuel (Can) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
40Edwige Pitel (Fra) Cogeas Mettler Look0:09:19
41Shara Gillow (Aus) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
42Alexis Ryan (USA) Canyon-SRAM0:10:56
43Anouska Koster (Ned) Team Virtu Cycling
44Ahreum Na (Kor) Ale Cipollini
45Marta Cavalli (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling0:10:58
46Krista Doebel-Hickok (USA) Rally UHC Cycling Women
47Nina Buijsman (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg0:10:59
48Jade Wiel (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
49Leah Thomas (USA) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
50Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
51Rossella Ratto (Ita) BTC City Ljubljana
52Victorie Guilman (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
53Kelly Van Den Steen (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
54Lara Vieceli (Ita) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
55Rozanne Slik (Ned) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank0:11:03
56Pfeiffer Georgi (GBr) Team Sunweb Women0:11:04
57Liane Lippert (Ger) Team Sunweb Women
58Sarah Roy (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women
59Deborah Paine (NZl) Cogeas Mettler Look
60Katrine Aalerud (Nor) Team Virtu Cycling
61Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Canyon-SRAM
62Georgia Williams (NZl) Mitchelton-Scott Women
63Mikayla Harvey (NZl) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
64Alice Maria Arzuffi (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling
65Dalia Muccioli (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling
66Elena Pirrone (Ita) Astana Women's Team
67Lorena Llamas Garcia (Spa) Movistar Team Women0:11:08
68Hannah Barnes (GBr) Canyon-SRAM0:11:10
69Eider Merino Cortazar (Spa) Movistar Team Women0:11:13
70Nadia Quagliotto (Ita) Ale Cipollini
71Laura Asencio (Fra) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
72Alena Amialiusik (Blr) Canyon-SRAM
73Asja Paladin (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling0:11:22
74Aude Biannic (Fra) Movistar Team Women
75Chantal Blaak (Ned) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam
76Audrey Cordon Ragot (Fra) Trek-Segafredo Women
77Elizabeth Deignan (GBr) Trek-Segafredo Women
78Charlotte Becker (Ger) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
79Severine Eraud (Fra) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport0:12:57
80Annelies Dom (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
81Mieke Docx (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport
82Danielle Christmas (GBr) Lotto Soudal Ladies
83Chloe Hosking (Aus) Ale Cipollini
84Sara Bergen (Can) Rally UHC Cycling Women
85Marina Uvarova (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look
86Lucie Lahaye (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women0:13:02
87Pauline Allin (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women
88Birgitte Andersen (Den) Team Virtu Cycling
89Jesse Vandenbulcke (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport0:13:06
90Alice Barnes (GBr) Canyon-SRAM
91Urska Zigart (Slo) BTC City Ljubljana0:13:07
DNFJessica Allen (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women
DNFAlexandra Manly (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women
DNFValerie Demey (Bel) CCC-Liv
DNFJessica Raimondi (Ita) Ale Cipollini
DNSSheyla Gutierrez Ruiz (Spa) Movistar Team Women
DNFLex Albrecht (Can) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFNina Kessler (Ned) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFEmily Newsom (USA) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFAnna Plichta (Pol) Trek-Segafredo Women
DNFEugénie Duval (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFElisa Balsamo (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling
DNFBelle de Gast (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFRoxane Knetemann (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg
DNFOlga Deyko (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look
DNFAnastasiia Pliaskina (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look
DNFSari Saarelainen (Fin) Cogeas Mettler Look
DNFCameron Vandenbroucke (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFSofia Bertizzolo (Ita) Team Virtu Cycling
DNFSpela Kern (Slo) BTC City Ljubljana
DNFAllison Beveridge (Can) Rally UHC Cycling Women
DNFAbigail Mickey (USA) Rally UHC Cycling Women
DNFSara Poidevin (Can) Rally UHC Cycling Women
DNFEmma White (USA) Rally UHC Cycling Women
DNFPascale Jeuland (Fra) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport
DNFDaniela Reis (Por) Doltcini-Van Eyck Spor
DNSMarion Sicot (Fra) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport
DNFNoemie Abgrall (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women
DNFAnaïs Morichon (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women
DNFMarine Quiniou (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women
DNFAnna Traxler (Can) Charente-Maritime Women

Mountain 1 - Côte de Gelos - 50.5 km
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Elise Chabbey (Swi) Bigla Pro Cycling Team3pts
2Sofie De Vuyst (Bel) Parkhotel Valkenburg2
3Nikola Noskova (Cze) Bigla Pro Cycling Team1

Mountain 2 - Côte de Gelos - 25.5 km
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sofie De Vuyst (Bel) Parkhotel Valkenburg3pts
2Nikola Noskova (Cze) Bigla Pro Cycling Team2
3Elise Chabbey (Swi) Bigla Pro Cycling Team1

Mountain 3 - Côte de Gelos - 75 km
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Elise Chabbey (Swi) Bigla Pro Cycling Team3pts
2Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Mitchelton-Scott Women2
3Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (RSA) CCC-Liv1

Mountain 4 - Côte de Gelos - 100 km
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women3pts
2Elise Chabbey (Swi) Bigla Pro Cycling Team2
3Katharine Hall (USA) Boels Dolmans Cyclingteam1

#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women

Young rider classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Demi Vollering (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg3:15:27
2Paula Andrea Patiño Bedoya (Col) Movistar Team Women0:00:03
3Evita Muzic (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope0:00:07
4Nikola Noskova (Cze) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
5Juliette Labous (Fra) Team Sunweb Women0:00:21
6Jeanne Korevaar (Ned) CCC-Liv0:04:57
7Marta Cavalli (Ita) Valcar-Cylance Cycling0:10:51
8Nina Buijsman (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg0:10:52
9Jade Wiel (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
10Victorie Guilman (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
11Pfeiffer Georgi (GBr) Team Sunweb Women0:10:57
12Liane Lippert (Ger) Team Sunweb Women
13Deborah Paine (NZl) Cogeas Mettler Look
14Mikayla Harvey (NZl) Bigla Pro Cycling Team
15Elena Pirrone (Ita) Astana Women's Team
16Nadia Quagliotto (Ita) Ale Cipollini0:11:06
17Laura Asencio (Fra) WNT-Rotor Pro Cycling
18Mieke Docx (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport0:12:50
19Marina Uvarova (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look
20Lucie Lahaye (Fra) Charente-Maritime Women0:12:55
21Jesse Vandenbulcke (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport0:12:59
22Urska Zigart (Slo) BTC City Ljubljana0:13:00


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Lukas Knöfler started working in cycling communications in 2013 and has seen the inside of the scene from many angles. Having worked as press officer for teams and races and written for several online and print publications, he has been Cyclingnews’ Women’s WorldTour correspondent since 2018.

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