Alex Manly won the 4th stage of the Tour of Scandinavia today, stopping Marianne Vos’ sequence of victories at 3 in a row. A slight crest at the finish line presented another chance on paper for Vos. However, the peloton was desperate to create an opportunity for someone else to win this stage with some hard racing. Chloe Hosking finished 2nd, her best result in a while, with Laura Tomasi 3rd for UAE Team ADQ. Vos was 6th on today’s stage and retains the leader’s yellow jersey.
The stage saw relentless attacking for most of the teams involved. Liv Racing Xstra were particularly visible at the front of the peloton along with Parkhotel Valkenburg. The 119.2km stage was surprisingly rolling, not many major climbs but still the climbing metres were there on the road. Several riders tried to pull away in the first half of the race, but the peloton was frugal in giving away space and it was challenging to create a gap. Just past the halfway mark, Femke Markus of Parkhotel Valkenburg managed to escape alone. She gained a lead of more than thirty seconds but had to let herself be caught by the peloton again. Another attack was not long in coming.
This time it was Lourdes Oyarbide (like the day before on Stage 3) and Mischa Bredewold, who got a decent gap but it was pulled back. Heading into the last 10km, Alice Barnes attacked with Alex Manly deciding to bridge across. The peloton initially looked at each other before a few more riders made the bridge across. This was initiated by Anouska Koster, as Jumbo Visma admitted defeat in their efforts to chase down the lead pair. By having Koster in this move, they could push the chasing responsibility onto another team.
Heading into the last 1km of racing, it was finely balanced with the peloton able to see the break up the road. Marianne Vos‘ sprint closed the gap but she found herself trapped behind her teammate Koster a little and with the road running out, it was clear the break was going to win here. Alex Manly outsprinted fellow Aussie Chloe Hosking by around half a wheel.
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