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Virtual Tour de France stage 2 – Live coverage

Zwift Tour de France stage 2

Zwift Tour de France stage 2 (Image credit: Zwift)

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Hello and welcome to our live coverage of stage 2 of the Virtual Tour de France. The peloton will head uphill today as they tackle the Watopia mountan route.

We're running a bit late today due to technical gremlins, but everything looks ok now.

The peloton has already broken up. They're 13 minutes into this race.

NTT's stage predictor has Stine Borgli (fdj), Liane Lippert (Sunweb) and Elisa Balsamo (Valcar) as the favourites for today.

Here's an animated look at today's course.

Enrica Magnaldi (Ceratizit-WNT) and Joscelin Lowden (Drops) are up there towards the front. They both performed strongly in the hills yesterday.

There's a group of around 20 riders up front at the moment.

Riders are being whittled away under the pace. Katie Hall (Boels Dolmans) drops back on a steep section.

19km remaining

They're up past the virtual snowline now. Thee laed group is thinning down to fewer than ten riders. Magnaldi is pushing the pace.

Here are the riders towards the top of the climb. Theye've just crested it now.

You can watch the race live too, of course. Check out our how to watch & VPN guide here.

Magnaldi took the QOM at the top, ahead of Lowden and Cecilie Uttrup-Ludwig (FDJ).

15km remaining

It's really steep stuff up here as the two leaders battle it out.

The riders can freewheel a little now as they hit the downhill.

Kristen Faulkner (Tibco-SVB) is chasing the two leaders on her own and she's almost back with them now.

A group consisting of Lowden, Lauren Stephens, Sarah Gigante (both Tibco-SVB) and
Pauliena Rooijakkers (CCC-Liv) are chasing six seconds back. Then it's another 24 seconds to Ella Harris (Canyon-SRAM).

8km remaining

Uttrup Ludwig is wearing sunglasses while riding her trainer indoors. Maybe her tv brightness is up too high.

The leaders pass over a small gravel section to a wooden bridge and then back onto the tarmac. A bit like the opening team time trial at the 2015 Vuelta, this.

5km remaining

It's Lowden and Stephens on the attack. They're closing in on the leaders.

The two groups are coming together now.

Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (FDJ-Nouvelle Acquitaine Futuroscope), Enrica Magnaldi (Ceratizit-WNT), Joscelin Lowden (Drops) Pauliena Rooijakkers (CCC-Liv) are up there too.

3km remaining

Uttrup Ludwig dropped an undraftable power-up and has gone on the attack!

2km remaining

1km remaining

Rooijakkers and Gigante dropped off the back as those attacks flew.

It's Magnaldi, Faulkner, Stephens, Uttrup Ludwig and Lowden for the win.

The camera cut away to show Magnaldi during the sprint, but it was a close one.

Lauren Stephens took it!

Lauren Stephens (Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank) is the winner of stage 2 of the Virtual Tour de France.

A shot of that sprint finish.

Lowden and Magnaldi made up the podium spots. Full top ten coming soon.

1 Lauren Stephens (USA) Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank 00:47:32

Next up is the men's race. NTT lead the yellow jersey rankings with 80 points, Rally are in second with 79, while Alpecin-Fenix are third on 72.

There are some big names on this men's stage 2...

And they're off! The men's second stage is underway.

There's a flat section to kick things off before the climbing starts.

25km remaining

Mauri Vansevenant is up front for Deceuncinck-QuickStep. The 21-year-old only joined the team a few days ago. He's the son of ex-pro and three-time lanterne rouge Wim Vansevenant.

Geraint Thomas is pushing the pace now, strteching out the peloton as they hit the climb.

Meintjes, Van der Pol, Ben O'Connor are all up towards the front after Thomas dropped back into the peloton.

21km remaining

Domen Novak (Bahrain McLaren) and Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale) are up front now, pushing onwards into the mist.

Thomas is back to the front now as they hit the virtual snowline.

19km remaining

The riders are heading downhill now, but they'll be climbing again soon as they near the top of the KOM. There'll be more steep road after that, too.

15km remaining

Michael Woods (EF Pro Cycling) has taken it up on the front on the steep section. The Canadian leads Tao Geoghegan Hart (Team Ineos)

15 seconds between Woods in first and Gianni Vermeersch (Alpecin-Fenix) in tenth.

Nicolas Edet (Cofidis) leads the way down the descent.

12km remaining

Edet, Woods, Ovett and Geoghegan Hart are up front, six seconds up on the chasers.

7km remaining

It looks like the front group is around 12 riders now.

Julien Bernard (Trek-Segafredo) and Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) have put in an attack on the flat.

5km remaining

Geoghegan Hart took on Stefan De Bod for the sprint – too close to call.

2km remaining

1km remaining

Bevin has gone long! Over 400 meters out.

Ovett and Woods fly past just before the line though! That was a close one.

Julien Bernard was also up there. Too close to call at the moment.

Bernard has won it!

Here's the shot of that close finish. Bernard just about edged it ahead of Ovett and Edet with Woods in fourth.

1 Julian Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo 00:41:12

In the women's race, Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank have taken the yellow and green jersey, while Drops have the polka dot jersey and Canyon-SRAM have the white jersey.

In the men's race, NTT lead the yellow and white jersey standings.

Our reports on the men's and women's races are up. Check them out for a rundown on what happened today.

That's all from us today. The Virtual Tour de France will be back next weekend for stages 3 and 4 in Zwift's new 'France' world, on the R.G.V and Casse-Pattes routes.

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