Marianne Vos (CCC-Liv) won a windy stage two of the Tour de Yorkshire Women’s Race to also take the overall classification.
The Dutchwoman rode to the line with Mavi Garcia (Movistar), who had tried to go solo earlier in the race, and Soraya Paladin (Alé Cipollini) before jumping ahead in the final hundred metres to claim victory.
The day was partly defined by the blustery conditions, with the waves crashing against the Yorkshire coastline as the peloton made their way up from Bridlington to Scarborough, but also by the flurry of attacks throughout.
Anna van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans) had tried her hand, as did Mavi Garcia, but eventually the race came down to the leading group of three trying to stay away from a chasing trio of Amanda Spratt (Mitchelton-Scott), Christine Majerus (Boels-Dolmans) and Hannah Barnes (Canyon-SRAM) who tried but ultimately failed to hunt them down in the run-in to Scarborough.
Garcia finished second with Paladin in third, which was also their respective positions on GC, both within ten seconds of Vos in the overall classification.
Lizzie Deignan (Trek Segafredo), having spent the early part of her race chasing down Van der Breggen, admitted after the race that she may have got her tactics wrong on the day. Following Paladin’s wheel on the Lythe Bank climb, the Italian rode up to the main group but Deignan didn’t keep it, opting to stay in a group with Van der Breggen and a number of other strong riders.
How it happened
Stage two’s 132km course from Bridlington to Scarborough featured five categorised climbs interspersed throughout, with two sprint points at Harwood Dale and Whitby Abbey.
The day would be defined by high winds and inclement weather, with Canyon-SRAM’s Alice Barnes igniting the race as she attacked from the off and mini echelons formed quickly throughout the pack.
After Barnes was pulled back in, Anna van der Breggen attacked on the descent into Robin Hood’s Bay, racing up the climb of Hooks House Farm, with Lizzie Deignan going off in pursuit.
Soon after, Deignan was brought back in to a reduced peloton as they passed through the Whitby Abbey sprint point, trailing Van der Breggen by 35 seconds, until they eventually caught her with 58km remaining.
At the 50km to go mark, Anna van der Breggen still kept the pace on as the riders ascended Lythe Bank, a 1.2km climb with an average gradient of 10 per cent. Led by the world champion, a group of nine riders began to go clear, with Mavi Garcia launching an attack off the front.
On the Côte de Grosmont, the penultimate and wall-like climb which was only 0.5km in length but had an average gradient of 15 per cent, Garcia had an advantage of 30 seconds over a chase group that had swelled to around twenty of the day’s favourites.
This group then began to split again, thanks to the effort of Marianne Vos and Annemiek Van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott), with Van der Breggen and Deignan finding themselves on the wrong end of the split after the Brit had failed to pick up the wheel of Paladin as the Italian rode across the gap.
On the final Ugglebarnby climb Garcia was still going strong, maintaining a 20 second gap, as the chase group behind went through a big re-organisation as Amy Pieters (Boels-Dolmans) and Lizzie Banks (Bigla) were dropped and Christine Majerus and Amanda Spratt began to lose touch with Soraya Paladin and Vos, the pair ploughing on.
Garcia crested the Uggblebarnby to take the lead in the Queen of the Mountains competition off Deignan, with Vos and Paladin making the catch soon after to form a leading group of three as they hit a tailwind on the run-in to Scarborough. Majerus, Spratt and Hannah Barnes formed the second group on the road, 14 seconds behind in gusty conditions.
Vos then attacked with 27km to go, as the chase group began to close in, opening up a big gap over Garcia and Paladin, before Paladin brought her back in within the next couple of kilometres.
The race turned into a pursuit between the two groups on the road, with Vos’ leading group gradually opening up their advantage as Majerus towed the chase group in pursuit of her ambitions in overall classification, starting the day in second place and five seconds ahead of Vos.
The sun finally came out as the riders approached Scarborough, with Amanda Spratt launching a last gasp attempt with 4km to go as she tried but failed to get across to the leading group.
With one kilometre to go, the front three started to slow as the game of cat and mouse ensued. The pace slowed further as they hit a headwind as the sea, which had raged all day, crashed against the rocks at the side of the cobbled road.
Garcia attacked first in the finishing straight, with Vos staying in her wheel and coming round her with metres to spare before the line to take the stage win.
Tour de Yorkshire Women’s Race 2019 stage two: Bridlington to Scarborough (132km)
1. Marianne Vos (Ned) CCC-Liv, in 3-59-16
2. Mavi Garcia (Esp) Movistar
3. Soraya Paladin (Ita) Alé Cipollini, all at same time
4. Christine Majerus (Lux) Boels-Dolmans, at 1-22
5. Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott, at same time
6. Lisa Brennauer (Ger) WNT-Rotor, at 1-37
7. Alice Maria Arzuffi (Ita) Valcar Cylance, at 2-01
8. Hannah Barnes (Gbr) Canyon-SRAM, at 2-06
9. Lizzie Banks (Gbr) Bigla, at 2-26
10. Liane Lippert (Ger) Team Sunweb, at 2-39
General classification after stage two
1. Marianne Vos (Ned) CCC-Liv, in 7-34-27
2. Mavi Garcia (Esp) Movistar, at 7 seconds
3. Soraya Paladin (Ita) Alé Cipollini, at 9s
4. Christine Majerus (Lux) Boels-Dolmans, at 1-28
5. Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott, at 1-35
6. Lisa Brennauer (Ger) WNT-Rotor, at 1-50
7. Alice Maria Arzuffi (Ita) Valcar Cylance, at 2-14
8. Hannah Barnes (Gbr) Canyon-SRAM, at 2-19
9. Lizzie Banks (Gbr) Bigla, at 2-36
10. Liane Lippert (Ger) Team Sunweb, at 2-50