The Ladies Tour of Norway is back in 2021 after being another major race to suffer a forced COVID postponement in 2020. The undoubted queen of the race is Marianne Vos who has won the last 3 editions in a row, although it feels like a 4th victory will be tough. Stage 3’s climb to the ski resort at Norefjell is designed to make the GC competition winnable by only the pure climbers. There are still plenty of sprint opportunities for Vos to add to her 8 stage victories at the Ladies Tour of Norway though. Many big names aren’t racing yet after their trip to Tokyo for the Olympics so there are chances for others to shine.
The pure sprinters won’t have it all their way though, with 3 short digs on Stage 1 to navigate before the final. Stage 2 is a puncheur’s dream with a short, steep climb coming before a short downhill run to the finish at Mysen. Stage 4 has a few lumps within its profile but will most suit the natural sprinters in the peloton here. Vos won 3 of the 4 stages back in 2019, with Lorena Wiebes taking the other. There’s no Wiebes here this season, unfortunately so someone else will have a great chance to stage a sprint win.
2020 – Not Held
2019 – Marianne Vos
2018 – Marianne Vos
2017 – Marianne Vos
2016 – Lucinda Brand
Thursday 12th August 2021 to Sunday 15th August 2021
Live on Eurosport, Eurosport Player & GCN
Stage 1 – 3-5pm
Stage 2 – 3-5pm
Stage 3 – 2:30-5:30pm
Stage 4 – 12:30-3pm
Twitter Hashtag: #LTON21
Ladies Tour of Norway 2021 Stage Profiles
Ladies Tour of Norway 2021 Favourites
Marianne Vos comes into this race with the best palmares, here and in general. She’s had a good 2021 season with a pair of stage victories at the Giro Donne going with her 3rd place at La Course. She was unfortunate in the Olympic road race, finishing 5th after all of the controversial work by the Dutch team. You almost expect her to win a stage here and Stages 1 and 2 look promising. Anouska Koster has a stage victory and a GC podium in this race. She’s just finished 3rd at Kreiz Breizh Elite Dames, assisting Anna Henderson to the overall victory. Anna Henderson is also in great form at the moment after winning Kreiz Breizh Elite Dames. She won both stages in the race for her first wins of an impressive season. She was 3rd Overall at the Baloise Ladies Tour as well recently, being consistent across the week. With no Vos here, Henderson gets a chance to sprint at the highest level for herself.
FDJ’s Marta Cavalli has had a great 2021 season but it’s just missing a win. 14 top-10 results shows how she’s always been up there on the results sheet. She’s impressed with her climbing this year which allowed her to get good results in the Spring classics, hilly Spanish races like Emakumeen Nafarroako and the Giro Donne. She’s got a useful sprint too, so can’t be too far away from another win. Teammate Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig does have a win this year, at the Vuelta a Burgos as she finally broke her WorldTour duck. She also has 14 top-10 results as she continues to be a presence near the front of races. Stage 2’s punchy climb might give her a chance but she’ll be wanting to do well on the climb on Stage 3 for a GC stint.
There’s no rest for Annemiek van Vleuten who rushed back from a double medal haul in Tokyo to take on and win San Sebastian at the weekend. She follows that up with 4 more days of racing here. Stage 3 feels like it’s her stage to lose and the GC with it.
Emma Norsgaard will get opportunities on 3 of the 4 stages. She’s taken 6 wins in her breakout season, including a stage at the recent Giro Donne. With the likes of Wiebes not racing, she’s one of the best sprinters in the pack here. With no Norsgaard on the list, Sheyla Gutierrez steps up as the best Movistar rider in a sprint, although she’s had a quiet 2021 season. Her only real results of note have come in the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana where she twice finished 2nd and also took a 3rd place. She might make it over the climb in a small group to the finish at Mysen on Stage 2.
Mavi Garcia is another rider to have had a solid year but has only won the Spanish national champs. She continues to impress when the gradient gets tough and impressed in the Spring one-day races. She’s followed that up with some impressive GC performances, 2nd in Setmana Ciclista Valenciana and 5th in the Giro Donne too. Stage 3 will really suit her and should push her up the standings. Her teammate Tatiana Guderzo is also in great climbing form at the moment. She was 8th herself at the Giro Donne and then finished 3rd at San Sebastian this weekend. If anything happens to Garcia, Guderzo will be there to take over.
Canyon SRAM have a couple of options for all of the stages. Between them, Hannah Barnes and Alice Barnes are decent sprinter options. Hannah was 3rd on a recent Tour de Suisse stage that pushed her up to 14th in GC. Alice just missed out on a Vuelta a Burgos stage victory before consistently sprinting in the two Belgian stage races. Consistent sprinting in the Baloise Ladies Tour saw her finish 11th in GC. When the road goes up, the likes of Ella Harris and Mikayla Harvey will take over. Harris continues to recover from her injuries whereas Harvey was 5th at the Tour de Suisse. She had a slightly disappointing Giro Donne compared to her 2020 race but Stage 3 here might be to her liking. Alena Amialiusik won a stage of the Lotto Belgium Tour on her way to 5th overall back in June. We might see her try an attack for a stage win. It’s not clear to me where any GC results will come from but Elise Chabbey is probably their best bet after a 10th place finish in GC at the Giro Donne.
Team DSM can count on Juliette Labous for the GC. She was 7th at the Giro Donne and had a strong late attack in the Olympics road race as the sole French rider in the peloton. I think other climbers will distance her a little on Stage 3 but she’ll be consistent enough to still make the top-10. Liane Lippert looks a possibility for Stage 2 as she excels on those sorts of short punchy climbs near the finish. 8th at La Course and 4th at the Thuringen Ladies Tour shows good form after a quiet Spring. Coryn Rivera is another rider showing good form at the moment. She won the final stage of the Giro Donne before finishing 7th in the Olympic road race. She was 2nd in another Giro Donne stage earlier on and is a great shout for the sprinter stages here. She’s not won a Ladies Tour of Norway stage before but was 3rd and 2nd in GC during flatter editions.
SD Worx have come to this race without plenty of their major stars. That leaves Niamh Fisher-Black looking like the best shout for GC. Having worked so much for other riders this year, it’ll be interesting to see how she does. She was 9th overall at the Giro Donne and won the youth jersey comfortably. On a long climb like the one we’ve got here, she has the potential to finish in the top-5.
Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio has appeared on a later version of the startlist. That makes her the team leader with Fisher-Black bumped back down to the 2nd option. Moolman is in great form after finishing 2nd in the Giro Donne behind her dominant teammate Van der Breggen. She immediately becomes a big favourite in the GC and likely to do well on stage 3’s climb.
Another young rider getting a chance is Lonneke Uneken. She won a stage and finished 4th in GC at the Healthy Ageing Tour in what feels like an age ago now. So it’s good to see that she won a stage at the Baloise Ladies Tour, as well as the points jersey and finishing 10th Overall. She should certainly be able to contest Stages 1 and 4 here and hopefully Stage 2 as well.
Trek Segafredo come to the Ladies Tour of Norway with some good options. Lucinda Brand is a former winner here and has been in great form during the second half of this season. She dominated the Thuringen Ladies Tour, winning 2 stages on her way to winning the GC. Brand then took the mountains classification at the Giro Donne. She will be a great wildcard option throughout. Lizzie Deignan has been in great climbing form recently. She won the Tour de Suisse, was 9th in La Course and took an impressive 4th in GC at the Giro Donne. She’ll be the team’s GC hop here. Chloe Hosking is back racing for the first time after testing positive for COVID. She’d started the 2021 season off well with 3rd in Le Samyn and 7th at De Panne before having to take an enforced break. It’s impossible to tell what form she’s in, but at her best, she’d be a favourite for stage wins here.
Lotte Kopecky has been in great form all season and that’s got her signed up to move to SD Worx for 2022 already. She won the Lotto Belgium Tour after a convincing stage win on the Muur van Geraardsbergen. The climb here should stop any hopes of another GC win but it’s entirely plausible that she wins the other 3 stages. The punchy climb on Stage 2 doesn’t look tough enough for her to worry about and might help thin out the peloton for her best chance to win.
Drops’ Joss Lowden comes into the Ladies Tour of Norway in great form. She took a dominant stage victory at the Tour de Feminin by attacking solo and gaining close to 8 minutes on most of the peloton. She ended up winning the GC by over 6 minutes as a result. Whilst it won’t be as easy to do that in a women’s WorldTour race, it’s a sign that she’s in a big form at the moment.
Finally, Kristen Faulkner and
Sarah Gigante are TIBCO’s best options here. Faulkner had a good spring sprinting to top-10s at the Tour of Flanders and Gent Wevelgem. Further top-10s at the Thuringen Ladies Tour showed that she’s a usual finisher when the parcours gets tough. Gigante is the team’s best climber and whilst she’s still feeling her way around the European peloton but would’ve cracked the top-10 this season if it weren’t for the serious injury she took in Fleche Wallonne. She will be a contender on Stage 3.
Chiara Consonni is a good shout for a stage win for the Valcar team. She’s stepped up in 2021 in races where Elisa Balsamo hasn’t taken part. Consonni won the Vuelta CV Feminas and Ronde de Mouscron in a great two week spell in April and narrowly missed out with 2nd in the Flanders Diamond Tour in June. Keep an eye out for her celebrations!
Ladies Tour of Norway 2021 Outsiders
Arianna Fidanza has been a good sprint option for Team BikeExchange this season. She just missed out on stage wins at Setmana Ciclista Valenciana with 2nd and 3rd places. She’s since finished 4th at Dwars door de Westhoek and 7th on a Lotto Belgium Tour stage. Her best chance for a good result is probably the easier Stage 4. With no major stars on the team for the Ladies Tour of Norway, SD Worx’s Anna Shackley might be able to show off her talent. Stage 3’s climb is made for her and whilst she might be assisting Niamh Fisher-Black, there’s a great chance for her to shine.
The young pair of Ingvild Gåskjenn and Anne Dorthe Ysland will be riding for Coop-Hitec Products in their home race. Gåskjenn has been impressing all season and recently took 8th in GC at Kreiz Breizh Elites Dames. She finished 7th on both of the stages and only the bonus seconds available saw her drop to 8th. Gaskjenn took 2 more top-10s at the Tour de Feminin in Czechia and was in the top-20 in GC at the Thuringen Ladies Tour and Lotto Belgium Tour. She doesn’t feel far away from a big result. Teammate Ysland is in a similar vein of form. She was 5th in GC at the Tour de Feminin with 3 top-10 stage results. Her consistency at the Lotto Belgium Tour saw her take 12th in GC there too. She’s only 19 but is also looking a future contender.
Drops’ Maike van der Duin did solidly in the spring, finishing 20th in GC at the Healthy Ageing Tour before finishing 15th at Omloop van de Westhoek and 14th at Scheldeprijs. She then didn’t finish a race for over 3 months before riding Kreiz Breizh Elites Dames. Like the Norwegian pair just mentioned, she did well there by finishing 7th Overall. She’s a contender for stage top-10s here. With no Van der Duin on the startlist now, Drops’ Emilie Moberg might be a good shout on home roads. She does best on flatter sprint stages and that sort of parcours saw her finish 4th at Scheldeprijs and 8th at the Lotto Belgium Tour earlier this season. There’s also Marjolein van ‘t Geloof who has been knocking around the top-10s of races since a 5th at Le Samyn early in the season. Between the pair, Drops have options for a solid result.
Yara Kastelijn has been one of the better Plantur-Pura riders on the road this season. She was 15th at Dwars door Vlaanderen and an impressive 2nd on the Muur van Geraardsbergen stage of the Lotto Belgium Tour. Her consistency nearly saw her take a top-20 place on GC at the Baloise Ladies Tour most recently. She can be an outside bet on the tougher non-climb stages. Silvia Persico has been sprinting well for Valcar when she’s had the opportunity. With no Consonni or Balsamo here, Persico should get the nod. She was 9th at Vuelta CV Feminas, 6th at the Flanders Diamond Tour and 4th on a Festival Elsy Jacobs stage. If the teamwork for her, she can match those results in this race.
Annemiek van Vleuten
Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig