Cycling fans were on the edge of their seat on Friday for the final of the fourth stage of the Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour. Marta Lach had accelerated at more than 40 kilometres from the finish line with Lisa Klein and Anna Christian. The peloton had to go all out in the final kilometres to reel in the trio, but had miscalculated. Marta came slightly too short for the victory. Klein won.
“We wanted to make the race today and we have more than succeeded. Pauliena Rooijakkers was in the beginning always part of breakaway attempts. After the three climbs of the day, the peloton only had 25 riders left, including the three CCC-Liv riders. That says enough about the high level that our riders achieve here in Thüringen”, says sports director Jeroen Blijlevens.
“Evy Kuijpers jumped after the three climbs and was accompanied by six strong riders. Even before that group was caught, Marta Lach attacked together with Klein and Christian. They cooperated well, but the peloton was also being active. I thought in the last kilometres: the stage distance is just a little too long, but the leading group held up nicely. It is a pity that Marta does not win, but she can proudly look back at what she has shown. That goes just as well for Pauliena and Evy. There is quite some spirit in this team.”
Solid lead in mountain classification
Pauliena started the fourth stage in the black mountain jersey. After Thursday's successful ride, she also performed well on Friday in the sprints for the mountain points. One time she was second, and twice as first. With these efforts, she made sure that the mountain jersey is now even tighter around her shoulders.
Marta was chosen as the most combative rider of the fourth stage.
Photo credits: Cor Vos