Marianne Vos has a strong history in the Ladies Tour of Norway, so it’s no surprise to see her be successful in the first stage of the Tour of Scandinavia. The race has grown from being just a Tour of Norway and includes stages in Sweden and the first one of the race in Denmark. After a well-talked-about disqualification at PostNord Vårgårda WestSweden for briefly adopting the banned virtual aero bars position, Vos answered back with another sprint win here. The win also sees her take the leader’s jersey too.
The 6-stage Tour of Scandinavia saw the riders leave Copenhagen, scene of the Tour de France Grand Depart this year and head north to Helsingør. A long stage of 145.6km saw plenty of mid-race attacks but ultimately no single breakaway was allowed to go clear. Parkhotel Valkenburg were particularly visible at the front of the race, often getting a gap of a few seconds only for the peloton to close down each move. Tour de France polka-dot jersey wearer Femke Gerritse took the first QoM point ahead of Amber Kraak of Jumbo-Visma.
We also saw the Danish champion, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig attack in her national jersey but ultimately to no avail. In many ways, getting the jersey seen on home roads was the goal of the move. When the race reached the final finishing circuit, things heated up a little bit more on the QoM climb. The first ascent counted in the QoM competition and we saw Marianne Vos lead out Amber Kraak to take the points – Kraak will wear the QoM jersey on Stage 2.
The next ascent saw the peloton come closest to splitting. The elastic was at full stretch as attack, counter-attack and more were launched. After an initial tester of a move up the climb, it was Floortje Mackaij who attacked over the top and Demi Vollering joined her. Sensing the impact of such a strong pair getting some distance, the peloton went at full chat to close the gap. Further attacks strung out the bunch even more and there was briefly a danger of a split happening. Just as this looked likely, the peloton calmed down and that allowed the bunch to regather ahead of the sprint.
Trek-Segafredo put in a tonne of work for their Danish former-world champion Amalie Dideriksen but ultimately Marianne Vos would be the fastest rider as the lead-outs disintegrated. Vos was boxed in with around 1km to go but her 19-year-old teammate Linda Riedmann was able to lead her through to the front at the right moment. With no Lorena Wiebes and Charlotte Kool a late scratch from the line-up, it was Megan Jastrab who got the sprint duties for Team DSM here. She finished 2nd, easily her best WWT result in her young career, ahead of Shari Bossuyt in 3rd. Linda Riedmann was able to continue her lead-out for a great 4th place, in front of Karolina Kumiega of Valcar-Travel & Service.
“It went very fast and there were several trains, it was quite nervous, already on the way but especially in the final when everyone wants to be there. We tried to keep the team together and I got a perfect final lead-out from Linda Riedmann.
She dropped me off on the Trek-Segafredo train. From there I launched my sprint. It was already going fast, so it was hard to go any faster. I am very happy that I was able to finish it.
I saw Demi and Floortje Mackaij go, and if those two ride away, they are very dangerous. I knew I had to get them back. I tried to cross and then tried to control the team,” said the 35-year-old rider, who also helped teammate Amber Kraak in the battle for the mountain jersey.
Amber did a great job. In other races she is always there for the team, it was nice to work for her now.”Marianne Vos