SD Worx-Protime’s sprint sensation, Lorena Wiebes, continued her winning streak in the UAE Tour, taking a convincing victory in the second stage amidst a flurry of echelons and a nail-biting sprint finish. The Dutchwoman, perfectly set up by world champion Lotte Kopecky, powered past her rivals, with Chiara Consonni and Clara Copponi following in second and third places respectively.
The stage, covering 113 kilometres and marked by crosswinds, saw the peloton break into echelons early on, with Wiebes and Kopecky maintaining prime positions throughout. Despite a puncture disrupting Kopecky’s rhythm and allowing the peloton to regroup, SD Worx-Protime displayed formidable teamwork to stay in contention.
Yanina Kuskova attempted a solo break in the final hour, but the peloton, driven by the prospect of a sprint showdown, quickly reeled her in. Kopecky’s efforts in the intermediate sprints, securing crucial bonus seconds, signalled SD Worx-Protime’s dual ambitions for stage victories and overall contention.
As the race approached its climax, the threat of echelons loomed again, yet the sprint teams’ reluctance to force the issue led to a mass sprint. SD Worx-Protime’s strategic patience paid off when Kopecky delivered Wiebes into an unbeatable position, enabling her to claim her second consecutive victory, albeit by a narrower margin than on the opening day.
Wiebes, buoyed by her perfect start to the season, praised the team’s execution in the wind-affected finale, acknowledging the added challenge posed by a nearby crash of Megan Armitage in the peloton. Kopecky’s invaluable support was highlighted by Wiebes, emphasising the collective strength that underpins SD Worx-Protime’s success.
Team dsm-firmenich PostNL, despite their efforts to animate the race and form echelons, could not capitalise in the sprint, with Rachele Barbieri hampered by a mechanical issue. The team remains optimistic about future sprint opportunities in the tour.
Chiara Consonni, edging closer to victory with a second-place finish, expressed confidence in her team’s performance and her personal form, looking forward to another chance at victory in the tour’s concluding sprint stage.
As the peloton prepares for the queen stage to Jebel Hafeet, the dynamics of the general classification are set to shift, with climbers coming to the fore. However, the sprinters, including the formidable Wiebes, have already made their mark on this year’s UAE Tour Women, setting the stage for a thrilling continuation of the race.
2024 UAE Tour Women Stage 2 result
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