SD Worx opened the Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour with a victory in the stage 1 team time trial in Schleiz. The powerful Dutch team beat runner-up squad Team Jayco AlUla by 10 seconds and third-placed team Canyon-SRAM by 21 seconds.
SD Worx covered the flat 9.1km course in a winning time of 13:05, with Lotte Kopecky crossing the line first, and so taking the first leader’s jersey of the six-day event. Kopecky was joined by teammates Mischa Bredewold, Barbara Guarishi, Lorena Wiebes and Lonneke Uneken.
Kopecky will wear the leader’s jersey into stage 2’s 153km road race in Gera on Wednesday.
Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour, seeking a place on the Women’s WorldTour next season, is one of the long-standing stage races on the women’s calendar.
The opening stage was a team time trial, one of the few offered this season, on a flat 9.1km route to and from Schleiz.
The women competed in a team time trial at the revamped La Vuelta Femenina earlier in May, with SD Worx finishing fifth behind winning team Jumbo-Visma, and then Canon-SRAM, Trek-Segafredo and Movistar.
At the Thüringen Ladies Tour, 17 teams lined up to kick off the six-day event, with One World Team Women setting the first time of the day at 14:58.
Faster times bumped the German team out of the hot seat, with the German National Team the first to break through 13 minutes. The team finished ninth on the day with powerful riders, which include Mieke Kröger and Hannah Ludwig.
Their time didn’t last long as UAE Team Emirates, Parkhotel Valkenburg, and Arkea Samsic all posted faster times at the 39km/h average speeds.
AG Insurance-Soudal-QuickStep crossed the line with an average speed of 40km/h in fifth place, despite a crash from Romy Kasper. Also, averaging more than 40km/h were Fenix-Deceuninck, which finished fourth on the day.
The top three fastest teams, SD Worx and Team Jayco-AlUla, both averaged more than 41km/h, with times 13:05 and 13:15, respectively and then Canyon-SRAM with the third fastest time of 13:26.
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