It was an incredible double win for Team SD Worx in the final stage of the Tour de Suisse. Niamh Fisher-Black beat fellow breakaway rider Kasia Niewiadoma in the sprint to claim her first World Tour victory. Leader Marlen Reusser also successfully defended her yellow jersey, adding the overall win of the Tour of her home country to her record, topping off another amazing day for the Dutch World Tour team. “We continue to amaze ourselves. This is a dream come true,” said Marlen Reusser and Niamh Fisher-Black.
Kasia Niewiadoma pulled off a strong attack in the final stage of the Tour of Switzerland, only Niamh Fisher-Black could follow her. “She went full on. The team instructions were that I did not help her, as I still had Demi Vollering and Marlen Reusser behind me. In the tactical discussion, we had decided to focus on the overall win and thus not immediately on the stage win. Especially in the beginning of Kasia’s attack it went really fast, but I knew I just had to keep following her wheel. To hear in my earpiece that Marlen was closing the gap and thus securing her yellow jersey gave super motivation.”
Niamh Fisher-Black joined Kasia Niewiadoma at the top of the final climb, after which it was a straight line to the finish. “A great opportunity unfolded for me. Over the radio, team manager Danny Stam encouraged me. He told me to believe I could beat Kasia. This was such a strong team performance, I had to finish it. Of course, I hadn’t been in this situation many times before, so then you always doubt yourself for a moment. But I psyched myself up. After all, I could have saved much more energy than Kasia. So I had to be able to beat her.”
She did just that, giving the 22-year-old New Zealand rider her first professional win at World Tour level. “Winning is the very best feeling. Finally I could throw my hands in the air myself. This is what you live for as a cyclist. My season was difficult with lots of bad luck and crashes, but I am a stubborn person. It had to work out one day. The team also kept believing in me. This victory is all the more gratifying.”
“This was the perfect day,” concluded Niamh Fisher-Black. “Our goal was the general classification. If a stage win comes as a bonus, it says a lot about the volume of this team. We don’t seize to surprise ourselves. This season amazing.”
Marlen Reusser shone after she secured the final general classification of the Tour with a solo attack. “I’m super happy. This was a big goal for me,” the Swiss rider summed up. “This is a dream come true. It’s special to win in my own country. I was continuously encouraged by all the fans along the road. A top rider like Demi Vollering put all her effort in an attempt not to let the gap with Kasia Niewiadoma get too big. After which I was able to secure the overall classification with an attack. To be able to triumph in my own country in this way is fantastic. Team SD Worx was one hundred per cent committed to helping me achieve this goal. The fact that the number one team in the world fully believed in me is a great honour for me.”