Giro Donne stage 6 report: Another solo victory for Van Vleuten

A crash took stage 5 winner and second-place overall Antonia Niedermaier out of the race.

Annemiek van Vleuten seems back to her old dominant self, taking another solo stage win to add to her margin on GC. Photo © Cor Vos

After narrowly missing out on a second stage victory the day before, Van Vleuten took no chances in the sixth stage of the Giro Donne, soloing away from a reduced peloton with 14 km to go. The pink jersey wearer rode alone to the finish in Canelli, adding more seconds to her overall lead.

Lorena Wiebes led in a group containing the top women in the race 20 seconds behind the winner, with Van Vleuten’s teammate Liane Lippert taking third on the stage.

Van Vleuten’s lead in the fight for pink grew to 3:03 over American Veronica Ewers, who finished outside the top ten on the stage. Ewers moved into second with the abandonment of the Best Young Rider Antonia Niedermaier, and Juliette Labous jumped into third overall.

How it happened

Brief stage results

  1. Annemiek Van Vleuten (Movistar) 2:39:04
  2. Lorena Wiebes (SD Worx) @ 0:20
  3. Liane Lippert (Movistar) @ same time
  4. Soraya Paladin (Canyon-SRAM) @ 0:25
  5. Silvia Persico (UAE Team ADQ) @ 0:28

GC standings

  1. Annemiek van Vleuten (Movistar) 14:58:30
  2. Veronica Ewers (EF Education-TIBCO-SVB) @ 3:03
  3. Juliette Labous (DSM-firmenich) @ 3:39
  4. Gaia Realini (Lidl-Trek) @ 3:59
  5. Mavi García (Liv Racing Teqfind) @ 4:18

Notes and analysis

Next up: stage 7 preview

The seventh stage is another challenging one in that it never relents. There are four categorized climbs throughout the stage, two Category 3s and two Category 2s. Passo del Ginestro, a 12.3 km climb averaging 4.4%, starts off the climbing 38 km into the stage. Il Vigneto, a Category 2 at 4.8 km long and 6.6%, is 26 km later. Then after a bit of rolling roads, the peloton will hit Colle Paravenna, a 6.5 km-long Category 2 climb that averages 6%.

Colle Paravenna tops out 9 km from the finish but the roads don’t dip before then. Instead, the route follows a plateau to another ascent, the Category 3 Santuario della Guardia. This final ascent is only 2.6 km long but averages 7.2%. The steepest slopes are near the top of the climb.

After a few general classification days, the seventh stage could finally be one for a breakaway but with the way the GC riders are attacking this race, it looks unlikely an opportunistic rider will be able to get enough time before the final two ascents. Instead perhaps keep an eye on the likes of Fisher-Black, who is getting better and better with each stage, Realini, and Labous for some bold moves.

Quote of the day

“You wake up after yesterday, a really hard stage, and the team comes together with the plan to attack and I am always in for a plan to attack.”

Annemiek van Vleuten

Oh, you like to attack? You don’t say! We never would have guessed.

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