Demi Vollering beats Annemiek van Vleuten to Liege-Bastogne-Liege Femmes title

Demi Vollering (Team SD Worx) won the Liège-Bastogne-Liège Femmes, taking the first big classic victory of her career. The 24-year-old beat Annemiek van Vleuten (Movistar Team) and Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) in the sprint of a group of five.

A sizable group entered the final climb of the day, the Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons, where Vollering's teammate Anna van der Breggen set a hard pace. Van Vleuten then attacked on the unclassified climb right afterwards, followed by Van der Breggen and Longo Borghini. When Vollering and Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) got back to this trio at the top of the climb, the final selection was made.

On the descent into Liège, Van der Breggen took to the front to make sure none of the dropped riders could come back and brought the group to the finishing stretch where Vollering was the strongest in the sprint.

Vollering was crying tears of joy in the winner’s interview: “Anna did such a good job, and the whole team, that I could finish it … that’s awesome. I am really grateful that they did it for me, and it is such an amazing team, thanks to the whole team,” she said.

“It was really hard on the climbs. At one moment we were gone with this group, then Vos came back, and it is better to not sprint with her, of course, so I was really happy that it did break again. Anna did a lead-out the last ten kilometres or something, it was awesome. This is a race I really like, two years ago I was third here in my first pro year, and now already I won, it is a dream coming true,” Vollering said.

How it unfolded

It was a somewhat reduced peloton that started the 140.9-kilometre race in Bastogne on Sunday morning as both Team DSM and Parkhotel Valkenburg had had to withdraw due to Covid-19 positives. Ruth Winder (Trek-Segafredo) could not start as a close contact to a Covid-19 positive while defending champion Lizzie Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) was not at full fitness after an unrelated illness and also skipped the race.

Claire Faber (Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch) and Silvia Zanardi (BePink) formed the early breakaway. They built a gap of up to three minutes but were caught soon after the first climb, the Côte de Wanne.

Niamh Fisher-Black (Team SD Worx) initiated the next move that led to a group of seven riders that also included Tayler Wiles (Trek-Segafredo), Lucy Kennedy (Team BikeExchange), Anouska Koster (Team Jumbo-Visma), Elise Chabbey (Canyon-SRAM), Leah Thomas (Movistar Team), and Brodie Chapman (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope). When they were caught on the Côte de Desnié, just inside 50 km to go, Fisher-Black attacked again and held on to the bottom of the Côte de La Redoute.

It was now the turn of Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (Team SD Worx) to attack, and Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope) bridged to her on the climb while Lucinda Brand (Trek-Segafredo) made the connection on the plateau afterwards. Marianne Vos (Team Jumbo-Visma) also tried to bridge to the front but was quickly caught again as more riders came back to the chase group.

Moolman-Pasio, Uttrup Ludwig, and Brand increased their advantage to 30 seconds, but Canyon-SRAM and Movistar Team, in particular, worked hard to reel them in, and a group of over 30 riders started the Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons, 15 km from the finish.

World champion Van der Breggen set the pace, dropping many riders and having only Vollering, Niewiadoma, Longo Borghini, and Van Vleuten in her wheel at the top of the classified climb. Moolman-Pasio, Vos, and Uttrup Ludwig returned in the short downhill before the unclassified climb that followed, but an acceleration from Van Vleuten brought the group back down to the original five.

In the final ten kilometres, Van der Breggen repaid Vollering’s work in Wednesday’s La Flèche Wallonne by pulling the group to ensure Vos could not come back, and Vollering convincingly won the sprint in Liège against Van Vleuten and Longo Borghini.

With her third place, Longo Borghini regains the lead in the UCI Women’s WorldTour ranking; 15th-placed Maria Novolodskaya (A.R. Monex) defends the lead in the Women’s WorldTour U23 ranking.

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Full Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Demi Vollering (Ned) Team SD Worx 3:54:31
2Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar Team Women
3Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
4Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-SRAM Racing
5Anna van der Breggen (Ned) Team SD Worx 0:00:02
6Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma Women Team 0:01:27
7Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (RSA) Team SD Worx
8Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
9Lucinda Brand (Ned) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:59
10Amanda Spratt (Aus) Team BikeExchange
11Soraya Paladin (Ita) Liv Racing
12Riejanne Markus (Ned) Jumbo-Visma Women Team
13Elise Chabbey (Swi) Canyon-SRAM Racing
14Marta Cavalli (Ita) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
15Mariia Novolodskaia (Rus) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team
16Erica Magnaldi (Ita) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
17Niamh Fisher-Black (NZl) Team SD Worx
18Ane Santesteban Gonzalez (Spa) Team BikeExchange
19Mavi Garcia (Spa) Ale' BTC Ljubljana
20Leah Thomas (USA) Movistar Team Women
21Katrine Aalerud (Nor) Movistar Team Women
22Janneke Ensing (Ned) Team BikeExchange 0:02:07
23Evita Muzic (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 0:02:47
24Kristen Faulkner (USA) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank 0:03:57
25Brodie Chapman (Aus) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
26Barbara Malcotti (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
27Tayler Wiles (USA) Trek-Segafredo 0:04:02
28Anna Henderson (GBr) Jumbo-Visma Women Team
29Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (Ned) Team SD Worx
30Eider Merino Cortazar (Spa) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team
31Marta Lach (Pol) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team 0:04:34
32Joscelin Lowden (GBr) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur
33Olga Zabelinskaya (Uzb) Cogeas Mettler Look Pro Cycling Team
34Sandra Levenez (Fra) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
35Alena Amialiusik (Blr) Canyon-SRAM Racing 0:04:37
36Thalita De Jong (Ned) Bingoal Casino-Chevalmeire 0:05:13
37Arlenis Sierra Canadilla (Cub) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team
38Anouska Koster (Ned) Jumbo-Visma Women Team
39Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Canyon-SRAM Racing
40Federica Piergiovanni (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
41Teuntje Beekhuis (Ned) Jumbo-Visma Women Team
42Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) Ale' BTC Ljubljana
43Mikayla Harvey (NZl) Canyon-SRAM Racing
44Clara Koppenburg (Ger) Rally Cycling 0:05:15
45Marlen Reusser (Swi) Ale' BTC Ljubljana 0:09:04
46Anastasiia Chursina (Rus) Ale' BTC Ljubljana
47Sara Martin Martin (Spa) Movistar Team Women
48Shirin van Anrooij (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
49Emily Newsom (USA) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
50Lara Vieceli (Ita) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
51Valerie Demey (Bel) Liv Racing
52Sabrina Stultiens (Ned) Liv Racing
53Camilla Alessio (Ita) BePink
54Jeanne Korevaar (Ned) Liv Racing
55Hannah Barnes (GBr) Canyon-SRAM Racing
56Lizbeth Yareli Salazar Vazquez (Mex) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team 0:14:58
57Lone Meertens (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
58Mae Lang (Est) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
59Julie Van De Velde (Bel) Jumbo-Visma Women Team
60Alice Towers (GBr) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur
61Cedrine Kerbaol (Fra) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
62Olha Kulynych (Ukr) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
63Hanna Nilsson (Swe) Lotto Soudal Ladies
64Alessia Patuelli (Ita) Ale' BTC Ljubljana
65Carolin Schiff (Ger) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
66Krista Doebel-Hickok (USA) Rally Cycling
67Anna Christian (GBr) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur
68Georgia Williams (NZl) Team BikeExchange
69Paula Patiño Bedoya (Col) Movistar Team Women
70Moniek Tenniglo (Ned) Team BikeExchange
71Eleonora Camilla Gasparrini (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
72Silvia Magri (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
73Marta Jaskulska (Pol) Liv Racing
74Alice Maria Arzuffi (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
75Pauliena Rooijakkers (Ned) Liv Racing
76Elena Cecchini (Ita) Team SD Worx
77Amandine Fouquenet (Fra) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
78Pauline Allin (Fra) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
79Eugénie Duval (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 0:15:03
80Nicole Steigenga (Ned) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
81Eri Yonamine (Jpn) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
82Danielle Christmas (GBr) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur 0:15:07
83Amber Aernouts (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
DNFLauretta Hanson (Aus) Trek-Segafredo
DNSRuth Winder (USA) Trek-Segafredo
DNFLucy Kennedy (Aus) Team BikeExchange
DNFSophie Wright (GBr) Ale' BTC Ljubljana
DNFMie Bjørndal Ottestad (Nor) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
DNFClaire Faber (Lux) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
DNFLena Mettraux (Swi) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
DNFSandra Weiss (Swi) Andy Schleck-CP NVST-Immo Losch
DNFGloria Rodriguez Sanchez (Spa) Movistar Team Women
DNFStine Borgli (Nor) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
DNFTanja Erath (Ger) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFNina Kessler (Ned) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFLauren Stephens (USA) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
DNFLaura Asencio (Fra) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
DNFKathrin Hammes (Ger) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
DNFLea Lin Teutenberg (Ger) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
DNFDanique Braam (Ned) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFJesse Vandenbulcke (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFElise Vander Sande (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
DNFSilvia Pollicini (Ita) Valcar-Travel & Service
DNFMariia Miliaeva (Rus) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team
DNFKatia Ragusa (Ita) A.R. Monex Women's Pro Cycling Team
DNFSara Penton (Swe) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur
DNFApril Tacey (GBr) Drops-le Col Supported by Tempur
DNFCharlotte Becker (Ger) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
DNFGreta Richioud (Fra) Arkea Pro Cycling Team
DNFHannah Buch (Ger) Cogeas Mettler Look Pro Cycling Team
DNFIuliia Galimullina (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look Pro Cycling Team
DNFAigul Gareeva (Rus) Cogeas Mettler Look Pro Cycling Team
DNFPetra Stiasny (Swi) Cogeas Mettler Look Pro Cycling Team
DNFLenny Druyts (Bel) Bingoal Casino-Chevalmeire
DNFJustine Ghekiere (Bel) Bingoal Casino-Chevalmeire
DNFKelly Van Den Steen (Bel) Bingoal Casino-Chevalmeire
DNFMieke Docx (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
DNFBarbara Sniezynska (Pol) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
DNFFien Van Eynde (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus Continental Team
DNFHolly Breck (USA) Rally Cycling
DNFHeidi Franz (USA) Rally Cycling
DNFLeigh Ann Ganzar (USA) Rally Cycling
DNFSara Poidevin (Can) Rally Cycling
DNFVania Canvelli (Ita) BePink
DNFMichaela Drummond (NZl) BePink
DNFMarketa Hájková (Cze) BePink
DNFNadia Quagliotto (Ita) BePink
DNFSilvia Zanardi (Ita) BePink

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