What should have been a straight forward day for the sprinters, turned out to be an eventful one at the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift today.
Stage 6 saw the peloton tackle the 122km route from Albi to Blagnac in a day that, despite containing four categorised climbs along the way, looked on paper to be a surefire bunch sprint finish.
After several attempts to form a meaningful breakaway, a group of three riders managed to forge a gap of well over 2 minutes. This set the sprinter’s teams in the peloton into motion, as they tried to pull the trio back. Among the main bunch were Ashleigh Moolman Pasio, who was flanked my teammates, Julia Borgström, Justine Ghekiere and Romy Kasper through the day.
The breakaway was reduced to two riders, but still managed to hold off the marauding peloton, with Emma Norsgaard of Movistar eventually taking the victory. Further back, despite a crash when entering the final straight, every rider from AG Insurance – Soudal Quick-Step was able to stay safe, with Ashleigh retaining her 2nd place on general classification as the race enters tomorrow’s much anticipated stage, finishing on the Col du Tourmalet.
Julia was the first of the team’s riders to cross the finish line. Afterwards, she said, “We really focused on keeping Ash safe, especially in the final 20km. When we came in to finish, we really collaborated well and worked to keep her near the front. There was a crash close to the finish, which held us up, but luckily was in the last 3km so we did not lose time, and everyone worked really well together, today.’