Virtual Tour de France: Tanja Erath wins women's stage 3

during Stage 2 of the Amgen Tour of California Women's Race Empowered with SRAM on May 18, 2018 in South Lake Tahoe, California.
Tanja Erath (Canyon-SRAM) (Image credit: Getty Images)

Tanja Erath (Canyon-SRAM) won stage 3 of the Virtual Tour de France held on the Zwift platform on Saturday. The former Zwift Academy winner won a small bunch sprint ahead of time trial world champion Chloe Dygert (Twenty20) and April Tacey (Drops).

"I'm super happy to win," Erath said in a post-race press conference. "A stage win is always something special. Zwift is kind of my thing, so I should win a stage and it worked out so I'm super happy."

TIBCO-SVB continue to lead the overall classification with 197 points, while Canyon-SRAM trail in second place with 174 points. Drops are positioned in third place with 150 points.

The third stage of the Virtual Tour de France covered two 24km laps of the upper half of Zwift’s newly released France map. The R.G.V. route started with 12km of flats with an intermediate Pavé Sprint at the 11.9km mark and then at the 36km mark on the second lap. 

The route also included one Queen of the Mountain ascent on each lap at Aqueduc, with an average grade of 4 per cent, at 13.8km and 37.9km. The peloton then descended toward the Ballon Sprint at 18.1km and 42.2km on each circuit, which then led straight into the start/finish line on the Marina for a total of 48km of racing.

The Virtual Tour de France has attracted the top teams in the world including Boels Dolmans, Canyon-SRAM, TIBCO-SVB, Drops and Rally Cycling, to name a few. The event is based on a points system whereby the first rider to cross the finish line scores 50 points, and points are awarded to the top 25 riders. 10 points are also available to the winner of each intermediate sprint and mountain ascent. The team that accumulates the most points at the finish line takes the overall lead. 

The racing started last weekend with stage 1’s Watopia Hilly race won by Great Britain’s April Tacey from Drops, and the team took the overall classification lead. TIBCO-SVB overtook that lead in the overall and points classifications, however, when Lauren Stephens won stage 2’s Watopia Mountain race. Drops led the mountains classification and Canyon-SRAM led the youth classification.

The main field stayed together for the first 12km of flats but the riders began to separate over the Aqueduc climb where Tacey crossed the line first to take 10 points. The field regrouped on the descent, with Alice Barnes (Canyon-SRAM) taking points at the Ballon Sprint.

The smaller field of roughly 25 riders raced through the start/finish line in Marina to start the second lap. Heading into the Pavé Sprint, Loretta Hanson (Trek-Segafredo) stormed over the line to take 10 points for her team. 

Kathrin Hammes (Ceratizit-WNT) took the points at the top of the Aqueduc climb, which then whittled the field down even further into the last half of the second loop. 

CCC-Liv made their presence known on the second lap and led the peloton into the last intermediate Ballon Sprint, won by Riejanne Markus. 

The team then continued to push the pace into the final 6km of the race but they were followed closely by TIBCO-SVB and Canyon-SRAM. The sprint opened up early and it was Erath who won the stage in a close sprint ahead of Dygert and Tacey.

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Stage 3 - Brief Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Tanja Erath (Ger) Canyon-Sram Racing 1:06:24
2Chloe Dygert (USA) Twenty20 Pro Cycling
3April Tacey (GBr) Drops
4Riejanne Markus (Ned) CCC-Liv Team
5Kristen Faulkner (USA) Team Tibco-Silicon Valley Bank
6Alice Barnes (GBr) Canyon-Sram Racing
7Evy Kuijpers (Ned) CCC-Liv
8Kathrin Hammes (Ger) Ceratizit-WNT Pro
9Georgia Simmerling (Can) Twenty20 Pro Cycling
10Teuntje Beekhuis (Ned) Lotto Soudal Ladies
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General classification after stage 3
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank 197
2Canyon-SRAM 174
3Drops 150
4CCC-Liv 144
5Twenty20 Pro Cycling 139
6Ceratizit-WNT 87
7Boels Dolmans 81
8Rally Cycling 77
9FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 70
10Team Subweb 49
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Mountian classificationn
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank 93
2Canyon-SRAM 87
3Boels Dolmans 41
4Drops 40
5Ceratizit-WNT 36
6Trek-Segafredo 31
7FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 20
8CCC-Liv 18
9Team Subweb 8
10Twenty20 Pro Cycling 7
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Points classification
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Canyon-SRAM 182
2TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank 120
3Drops 89
4CCC-Liv 74
5Trek-Segafredo 52
6Ceratizit-WNT 48
7Boels Dolmans 41
8Twenty20 Pro Cycling 20
9FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 20
10Team Subweb 8
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Young rider classification
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Drops 26
2Ceratizit-WNT 22
3Canyon-SRAM 8
4FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope 6
5TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank 3
6Boels Dolmans 1
7CCC-Liv 1

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