Fox is centimeters short against Deignan in final sprint La Course

Elizabeth Deignan has won La Course for the first time in her career. After 95 kilometres of racing in and around Nice, the British cyclist was just faster than Marianne Vos in the final sprint. The two-time winner (2019 and 2014) was beaten to centimetres.

Already early in the race the pace was too fast for many riders, but the Dutch favourites were at the front of the depleted peloton. On the second climb of the Cรดte de Rimiez, Annemiek van Vleuten attacked and the peloton broke away.

Heading group

A group with Van Vleuten, Vos, Deignan, Demi Vollering, Katarzyna Niewiadoma and Elisa Longo Borghini took a big lead over the rest. With 34 kilometres to go, the lead was more than a minute, with Van Vleuten in particular setting the pace

Deignan attacked from time to time, but the group of six riders also stayed together on the descent and built up the lead on the peloton to a minute and a half. With six kilometres to go the pace in the breakaway was boosted.

Stressing finish

Longo Borghini started at more than two kilometers from the finish, but the group didn’t let the Italian rider go. Van Vleuten responded with two more attacks, but she couldn’t escape either, making it to a final sprint in Nice.

That was in favor of Vos, who seemed to win by force majeure, but was just knocked on the line by Deignan. Vollering finished third and Van Vleuten crossed the line in Nice in fifth place.

Fox was very upset afterwards. “The line was just too far and I sprinted just too early”, said the double winner. “I should have just waited a moment longer. It really sucks, it’s a waste of opportunity, because it was a really good race.”

Look and listen below to the reactions of Marianne Vos, Elizabeth Deignan, Annemiek van Vleuten and Demi Vollering.

Afterwards, the European champion Van Vleuten was at peace with her fifth place. “I had expected this scenario too, but I did enjoy it. I wanted to show a bit of course, but after the climb I couldn’t sneak off anywhere.”

Vollering was also satisfied with the results. “For today, this was all. It was really tough what Annemiek did, so I was happy to stick with it. A tough race, but I can really be satisfied with third place.”