The former Olympic and world champion was racing on Zwift for the first time when finishing first in the virtual Innsbruck race.
Vos times sprint to perfection to beat Uttrup Ludwig to stage win
Vos admitted the race, which she did in her garage, was difficult for all of the competitors, and they will do it all again in Tuesday’s hilly Stage 2.
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Reflecting on her stage win, Vos said: “Very, very hard. At one point you just want to look around and see if everybody else is suffering as hard as you are because it seems those avatars are just enjoying themselves riding around Innsbruck ring.
But I think it was hard for everybody as I just got a message from Anna van der Breggen saying she had a hard time as well. It was a really, really good race and a hard race for all of us girls. I was lucky I couldn’t see myself, because it was such a hard effort in the final two or three kilometres. You first have this hill where I really had to dig deep to stay with the group and then you try to recover and surprise the group.
“I nearly missed the group so I really had to make an effort to stay on the wheels and make the final sprint - I really had to give everything. I think it’s something compared to racing on the roads; get this right and the timing right and try to say when you can [go]. My cadence was a little lower than it normally is on the road so I tried to use my gears in my final sprint.”
Asked about her set-up, Vos said: “I’m in the garage, I have the Tacx NEO, which is one of the best trainers I think so I really like the set-up. Of course, the situation is quite intense over the last month with the Covid-19 outbreak; I think more people got into online racing and training and also with our team we did some online rides so we’re all getting more into this.
“The racing of course is something really different. It’s good to have the ride set-up, then you enjoy it much more, with some fans, with some good screens, trainer… I like this it’s good fun. Still hard!”
On the use of Zwift’s power-ups, Vos said: “I’m not that experienced so I got some tips and tricks from my teammates and those who were racing before and they gave some good information about what to do with those power-ups. Of course, you can’t really use them all the time so I had some good tricks to save it for the final sprint.”
Report: Vos surges to victory to win Stage One
Vos produced a phenomenal finish to beat Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig in a sprint finish on day one of the Zwift Tour For All.
A breakaway group of nine riders, including Uttrup Ludwig, Vos and Anna van der Breggen, opened up a gap of over a minute with one lap of the course remaining.
The chasing pack threatened to catch the break inside the last three kilometres after chasing hard to shut the gap. But that energy proved too much and the lead group stayed away.
Uttrup Ludwig launched a solo burst to try to take away the chance of a sprint finish, and it looked like she was going to hold on for the win. But Vos, who was racing on Zwift for the first time, executed a perfect sprint finish and utilised a power-up at the ideal moment to surge clear inside the last 100m.
"I don't know if you saw me suffering, it's really hard. It was a nice race and in the last section you really get that race feel," Vos said moments after taking the victory.
I don't have a lot of experience, but I have some experienced team-mates and as this is a team event we tried to make the best of it. Thanks very much to Ashleigh Moolman Pasio and Riejanne Markus for giving me those tips and tricks!
Both men's and women's racing will be screened each day between 1400 and 1600 BST with some of the best cycling teams in the world including Mitchelton-Scott, EF-Education, NTT, Alpecin-Fenix, Bahrain-McLaren, Canyon//SRAM Racing, CCC-Liv and Boels Dolmans competing for race honours. Teams and the top 25 riders will gain points across the week alongside a daily individual race winner. There will also be intermediate points on each stage and double points for the Top 10 on the Queen Stage (Stage 5).
All you need to know about Zwift's 'Tour for All'
Stages will range in distance from approximately 45km to 75km and approximately 400m and 1700m in elevation with race times estimated to be between 1hr 15min and 2hr, depending on the distance and elevation of each stage. Results will be points based and determined by the team’s performance and results for each stage.
The Tour for All professional racing series will open a month-long charity fundraising initiative that will see Zwift donate a total of $125,000 to Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and its COVID-19 crisis fund. An additional $125,000 can be unlocked once 250,000 people complete a stage of the Tour for All. The professional racing series is designed to showcase the mass-participation stages and encourage Zwifters to take part by riding some of the same courses that the pros have raced. For more information on Zwift’s Tour for All head to Ride - zwift.com/tfaride
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5th May - Stage 2
Our first hilly stage.
Course: Cobbled Climbs, Richmond. Elevation Gain: 126m (413ft). Total distance: 46.2km (28.5miles)
6th May - Stage 3
Our first mountain stage. We begin by taking Ocean Boulevard around to the reverse Hilly KOM, which is the first half of the Figure 8 route. Then it’s over to the Volcano and up to the top before descending down and heading to the Italian Villas then the Mayan Jungle for a reverse loop of the circuit. After climbing out of the jungle, we descend back to sea level, hit The Esses and spin a quick around the Volcano Circuit. Then it’s through downtown Watopia and out Ocean Boulevard once more to the forward Epic KOM. Our route finishes at the Epic KOM banner.
Course: Medio Fondo, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 981m (3220ft). Total distance: 72.9km (45.1miles)
7th May - Stage 4
We give everyone’s climbing legs a break with a mostly flat and fast stage. Enjoy it while it lasts because tomorrow is the Queen Stage!
Course: Sand and Sequoias, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 147m (482ft). Total distance: 42.6km (26.5miles)
8th May - Stage 5
The Queen Stage with a finish up Alpe du Zwift.
Course: Quatch Quest, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 1710m (5610ft). Total distance: 46.5km (28.9miles)
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