Women’s Tour: Grace Brown wins hilly stage 4 in Welshpool

Australian beats Kasia Niewiadoma and Elisa Longo Borghini after trio breakaway in final kilometers.

Photo: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

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Grace Brown (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope) sprinted to victory in Welshpool as stage 4 of the Women’s Tour ended in a three-up sprint.

Brown held off Kasia Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) and Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) to win a tough stage in Wales.

After a group of 10 riders got away on the climbs between Wrexham and Welshpool, Brown, Longo Borghini and Niewiadoma attacked in the final six kilometers to contest the finish and deny a bunch finish.

“The gap kept growing and coming back, we didn’t quite know if we would make it to the end,” Brown said at the finish. “But in the last five kilometers, I decided to attack. At first, I was solo and then Elisa Longo Borghini and Kasia Niewiadoma joined me and we rode to the line and had a little sprint, and I was lucky enough to win.

“I knew that on paper I had a better sprint than the other two, but coming into the final 500m I was left on the front, so it’s never the best place to be for a sprint, especially when it’s a small group. But I think I played it alright and I was able to come around in the end to win.

“It’s my first win this year and I feel like it’s been coming for a while. It’s a relief but it’s also really fun for the team. It’s my first win for FDJ, apart from the time trial in the nationals in January, so it’s really good.”

Brown’s winning margin was enough to put her in the overall race lead, four seconds ahead of Niewiadoma. Lorena Wiebes (Team DSM), who started the day in the overall lead, kept the points jersey but slips to seventh on GC.

How it happened

It was another cold and wet morning in Wrexham as the Women’s Tour peloton lined up for the first of a doubleheader of tough, hilly stages in Wales. Though Friday’s summit finish is touted as the race’s queen stage, Thursday’s ride featured more climbing with over 2,000m of elevation gain.

Several teams tried and failed to drop the sprinters on stage 3, but stage 4’s difficult parcours looked like an opportunity for someone other than Lorena Wiebes (Team DSM) to take a win. As a result, the fight to get in the breakaway was fierce with several moves going before anything stuck.

Jumbo-Visma’s Teuntje Beekhuis was one of the day’s early attackers, getting away in the first 12km. She was joined by Lily Williams (Human Powered Health), Maike van der Duin (Le Col-Wahoo), and former race leader Clara Copponi (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope) after taking maximum points at the first intermediate sprint. However, their lead was only slim and the quartet was caught after just 25km of racing.

Keen to be in the day’s breakaway, Beekhuis joined the next move, which included Mikayla Harvey (Canyon-SRAM), Elena Cecchini (SD Worx), and Maaike Boogard (UAE Team ADQ). With better WorldTour representation and no threats to any of the jerseys, this four-rider group was let go and had a 1:05 advantage after 35km.

There were two notable abandons in the early part of stage 4, as Movistar’s general classification rider Sara Martín climbed into the team car, as did Marlen Reusser (SD Worx). After Chantal van den Broek-Blaak didn’t start the stage, Reusser’s abandon took the SD Worx squad to just four riders for the second half of the race.

In the peloton, it was Trek-Segafredo controlling things as they looked to support Longo Borghini, who was just 20 seconds down on GC. Due to Trek’s effort as the road began to rise to the first categorized climb of the day, the leaders’ advantage came down quickly and they were caught after 60km of racing.

With four kilometers still to go to the top of the climb, the attacks from the peloton began. A group of 10 riders emerged over the first climb, led by Longo Borghini. She was joined by teammate Ellen van Dijk, Elise Chabbey and Kasia Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM), Alex Manly and Kristen Faulkner (BikeExchange-Jayco), Grace Brown (FDJ-Nouvelle Aquitaine-Futuroscope), Veronica Ewers (EF Education-TIBCO-SVB), Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (SD Worx), and Riejanne Markus (Jumbo-Visma).

This group was still together and away as the race hit the base of the second categorized climb to Bryn-y-Fedwen. With 50km to go the leaders had 30 seconds over the chasing peloton, which was being driven by Team DSM.

At the top of the climb, Chabbey sprinted across the line first, securing enough points to put her in the lead of the mountains classification. Team DSM continued to put in the bulk of the work on the front of the peloton, but the strong leading group was not coming back quickly.

With 15km to go, the gap was 22 seconds. The chase in the peloton faltered when Team DSM drifted from the front, having used up several riders and it was down to just Pfeiffer Georgi and Wiebes to try to close the gap. Movistar began to help in support of Guarischi, but the gap went out to over 40 seconds. Van Dijk was dropped from the front group, but the remaining riders pressed on.

The attacks from the lead group began inside the final six kilometers, with Brown the first to try to go solo. Longo Borghini and Niewiadoma joined Brown, and the trio worked well together to pull out a lead. Despite the best efforts of Georgi in the peloton, it would come down to the breakaway to contest the finish.

It was Longo Borghini who launched her sprint first with 200m to go, but Brown was able to come around the Italian in the last 20m to take the victory. Niewiadoma came up fast from behind to beat Longo Borghini into second place. The remainder of the breakaway stayed away to take the top nine places, with former race leader Wiebes settling for 10th by winning the sprint from the bunch.

The hard Welsh section of this year’s Women’s Tour continues on stage 5, with the race’s first ever major summit finish atop the 6km Black Mountain climb in Carmarthenshire.

Women's Tour Stage 4 Results

1BROWN GraceFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope3:48:34
2NIEWIADOMA KatarzynaCanyon//SRAM Racing0:00
3LONGO BORGHINI ElisaTrek - Segafredo0:00
4MARKUS RiejanneTeam Jumbo-Visma0:10
5CHABBEY EliseCanyon//SRAM Racing0:10
6MANLY AlexandraTeam BikeExchange - Jayco0:10
7MOOLMAN AshleighTeam SD Worx0:10
8FAULKNER KristenTeam BikeExchange - Jayco0:36
9EWERS VeronicaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB0:36
10WIEBES LorenaTeam DSM1:16
11NEUMANOVA TerezaLiv Racing Xstra1:16
12MAJERUS ChristineTeam SD Worx1:16
13GUARISCHI BarbaraMovistar Team1:16
14ASENCIO LauraCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:16
16LACH MartaCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:16
17BOSSUYT ShariCanyon//SRAM Racing1:16
18GÅSKJENN IngvildTeam Coop - Hitec Products1:16
19YSLAND Anne DortheUno-X Pro Cycling Team1:16
20COPPONI ClaraFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:16
21CORDON-RAGOT AudreyTrek - Segafredo1:16
22BUIJSMAN NinaHuman Powered Health1:16
23LABECKI CorynTeam Jumbo-Visma1:16
24SCHWEINBERGER KathrinCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:16
25HOLDEN ElizabethLe Col - Wahoo1:16
26CONFALONIERI Maria GiuliaCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:16
27JØRGENSEN TirilTeam Coop - Hitec Products1:16
28DOEBEL-HICKOK KristaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB1:16
29CROMWELL TiffanyCanyon//SRAM Racing1:16
30DUVAL EugénieFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:16
31KASPER RomyTeam Jumbo-Visma1:16
32VAN DIJK EllenTrek - Segafredo1:16
33WILLIAMS GeorgiaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco1:16
34TON QuintyLiv Racing Xstra1:16
35LOWDEN JoscelinUno-X Pro Cycling Team1:16
36STORRIE BeckyCAMS - Basso1:16
37HARVEY MikaylaCanyon//SRAM Racing1:16
38FAHLIN EmiliaFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:16
39GUTIÉRREZ SheylaMovistar Team1:16
40DE JONG ThalitaLiv Racing Xstra1:16
41GROSSETÊTE MaëlleFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:16
42GEORGI PfeifferTeam DSM1:16
43MORROW BethCAMS - Basso3:12
44KOCH FranziskaTeam DSM3:12
45GONZÁLEZ AliciaMovistar Team3:12
46SWINKELS KarlijnTeam Jumbo-Visma3:12
47JASTRAB MeganTeam DSM3:12
48VANDENBULCKE JesseLe Col - Wahoo3:12
49SMITH AbiEF Education-TIBCO-SVB4:07
50STUART SammieCAMS - Basso4:07
51OYARBIDE LourdesMovistar Team4:07
52BARNES AliceCanyon//SRAM Racing4:07
53HANSON LaurettaTrek - Segafredo4:07
54KIRCHMANN LeahTeam DSM4:07
55FIDANZA AriannaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco4:07
56MOHR Mari HoleTeam Coop - Hitec Products4:07
57KOOL CharlotteTeam DSM4:07
58BOOGAARD MaaikeUAE Team ADQ4:07
59CECCHINI ElenaTeam SD Worx4:07
60FOURNIER RoxaneTeam SD Worx4:07
61SHROSBREE DanielleCAMS - Basso6:13
62KUIJPERS EvyHuman Powered Health11:12
63BEEKHUIS TeuntjeTeam Jumbo-Visma13:17
64VERHULST GladysLe Col - Wahoo13:17
65KESSLER NinaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco13:17
66BORGHESI LetiziaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB13:17
67SCOTT KatieCAMS - Basso15:09
68ROBERTS JessicaTeam Coop - Hitec Products15:13
69TOMASI LauraUAE Team ADQ15:13
70VAN DER DUIN MaikeLe Col - Wahoo15:13
71CHRISTIE HenriettaHuman Powered Health15:13
72IVERSEN AneTeam Coop - Hitec Products15:13
73WRIGHT SophieUAE Team ADQ15:13
74WILLIAMS LilyHuman Powered Health15:13
75VAN 'T GELOOF MarjoleinLe Col - Wahoo15:13
76NORMAN LETH JulieUno-X Pro Cycling Team15:13
77LUDWIG HannahUno-X Pro Cycling Team15:13
78OTTESTAD Mie BjørndalUno-X Pro Cycling Team15:13
79CAMPBELL TenielTeam BikeExchange - Jayco15:13
80HOSKING ChloeTrek - Segafredo15:13
81BÄCKSTEDT ElynorTrek - Segafredo19:30
82RAAIJMAKERS MaritHuman Powered Health24:17
83PATUELLI AlessiaUAE Team ADQ24:17
84KRÖGER MiekeHuman Powered Health24:33
85ERATH TanjaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB24:33
1BROWN GraceFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope 12:39:11
2NIEWIADOMA KatarzynaCanyon//SRAM Racing0:04
3LONGO BORGHINI ElisaTrek - Segafredo0:06
4MANLY AlexandraTeam BikeExchange - Jayco0:13
5CHABBEY EliseCanyon//SRAM Racing0:17
6MOOLMAN AshleighTeam SD Worx0:18
7FAULKNER KristenTeam BikeExchange - Jayco0:46
8WIEBES LorenaTeam DSM1:06
9EWERS VeronicaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB1:18
11BOSSUYT ShariCanyon//SRAM Racing1:22
12LABECKI CorynTeam Jumbo-Visma1:22
13CONFALONIERI Maria GiuliaCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:24
14MAJERUS ChristineTeam SD Worx1:24
15HARVEY MikaylaCanyon//SRAM Racing1:24
16GÅSKJENN IngvildTeam Coop - Hitec Products1:26
17DUVAL EugénieFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:26
18JØRGENSEN TirilTeam Coop - Hitec Products1:26
19LACH MartaCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:26
20BUIJSMAN NinaHuman Powered Health1:26
21HOLDEN ElizabethLe Col - Wahoo1:26
22DOEBEL-HICKOK KristaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB1:26
23TON QuintyLiv Racing Xstra1:26
24CROMWELL TiffanyCanyon//SRAM Racing1:26
25KASPER RomyTeam Jumbo-Visma1:26
26ASENCIO LauraCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling1:26
27GUTIÉRREZ SheylaMovistar Team1:26
28VAN DIJK EllenTrek - Segafredo1:26
29CORDON-RAGOT AudreyTrek - Segafredo1:26
30WILLIAMS GeorgiaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco1:26
31STORRIE BeckyCAMS - Basso1:49
32LOWDEN JoscelinUno-X Pro Cycling Team1:58
33NEUMANOVA TerezaLiv Racing Xstra3:47
34JASTRAB MeganTeam DSM4:00
35GEORGI PfeifferTeam DSM4:01
36CECCHINI ElenaTeam SD Worx4:08
37BOOGAARD MaaikeUAE Team ADQ4:16
38SMITH AbiEF Education-TIBCO-SVB4:17
39COPPONI ClaraFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope4:31
40YSLAND Anne DortheUno-X Pro Cycling Team4:45
41FAHLIN EmiliaFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope4:45
42GROSSETÊTE MaëlleFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope4:45
43MARKUS RiejanneTeam Jumbo-Visma5:01
44DE JONG ThalitaLiv Racing Xstra5:08
45SCHWEINBERGER KathrinCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling5:08
46MORROW BethCAMS - Basso6:41
47VANDENBULCKE JesseLe Col - Wahoo6:41
48KOCH FranziskaTeam DSM6:41
49OYARBIDE LourdesMovistar Team6:52
50SWINKELS KarlijnTeam Jumbo-Visma7:19
51FIDANZA AriannaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco7:36
52MOHR Mari HoleTeam Coop - Hitec Products7:36
53KOOL CharlotteTeam DSM7:36
54GONZÁLEZ AliciaMovistar Team9:16
55STUART SammieCAMS - Basso9:20
56GUARISCHI BarbaraMovistar Team9:30
57SHROSBREE DanielleCAMS - Basso9:42
58HANSON LaurettaTrek - Segafredo9:57
59KIRCHMANN LeahTeam DSM12:17
60BARNES AliceCanyon//SRAM Racing12:27
61VERHULST GladysLe Col - Wahoo13:26
62BORGHESI LetiziaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB13:27
63KUIJPERS EvyHuman Powered Health14:41
64WILLIAMS LilyHuman Powered Health15:21
65OTTESTAD Mie BjørndalUno-X Pro Cycling Team15:23
66LUDWIG HannahUno-X Pro Cycling Team15:23
67TOMASI LauraUAE Team ADQ17:06
68VAN DER DUIN MaikeLe Col - Wahoo18:30
69ROBERTS JessicaTeam Coop - Hitec Products18:42
70HOSKING ChloeTrek - Segafredo18:42
71BEEKHUIS TeuntjeTeam Jumbo-Visma20:40
72FOURNIER RoxaneTeam SD Worx20:55
73KESSLER NinaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco21:37
74VAN 'T GELOOF MarjoleinLe Col - Wahoo23:33
75CAMPBELL TenielTeam BikeExchange - Jayco23:33
76BÄCKSTEDT ElynorTrek - Segafredo23:56
77CHRISTIE HenriettaHuman Powered Health25:51
78RAAIJMAKERS MaritHuman Powered Health30:21
79WRIGHT SophieUAE Team ADQ32:01
80IVERSEN AneTeam Coop - Hitec Products34:22
81NORMAN LETH JulieUno-X Pro Cycling Team35:58
82SCOTT KatieCAMS - Basso36:19
83KRÖGER MiekeHuman Powered Health41:44
84PATUELLI AlessiaUAE Team ADQ42:11
85ERATH TanjaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB43:56
1WIEBES LorenaTeam DSM31
2COPPONI ClaraFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope20
3MANLY AlexandraTeam BikeExchange - Jayco17
4BOSSUYT ShariCanyon//SRAM Racing16
5BROWN GraceFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope15
6LONGO BORGHINI ElisaTrek - Segafredo15
7LABECKI CorynTeam Jumbo-Visma15
8NIEWIADOMA KatarzynaCanyon//SRAM Racing12
10GUARISCHI BarbaraMovistar Team12
11CECCHINI ElenaTeam SD Worx11
12FIDANZA AriannaTeam BikeExchange - Jayco11
13DUVAL EugénieFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope9
14CONFALONIERI Maria GiuliaCeratizit-WNT Pro Cycling8
15MARKUS RiejanneTeam Jumbo-Visma7
16VAN 'T GELOOF MarjoleinLe Col - Wahoo7
17CHABBEY EliseCanyon//SRAM Racing6
18GÅSKJENN IngvildTeam Coop - Hitec Products6
19BARNES AliceCanyon//SRAM Racing6
20MOOLMAN AshleighTeam SD Worx4
21FAULKNER KristenTeam BikeExchange - Jayco3
22NEUMANOVA TerezaLiv Racing Xstra3
23YSLAND Anne DortheUno-X Pro Cycling Team3
24BORGHESI LetiziaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB3
25EWERS VeronicaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB2
26VAN DER DUIN MaikeLe Col - Wahoo1
27HOSKING ChloeTrek - Segafredo1
1CHABBEY EliseCanyon//SRAM Racing32
2MAJERUS ChristineTeam SD Worx18
3MOOLMAN AshleighTeam SD Worx16
4NIEWIADOMA KatarzynaCanyon//SRAM Racing15
5LONGO BORGHINI ElisaTrek - Segafredo14
6MARKUS RiejanneTeam Jumbo-Visma14
7EWERS VeronicaEF Education-TIBCO-SVB12
8VERHULST GladysLe Col - Wahoo11
9FAULKNER KristenTeam BikeExchange - Jayco8
10BROWN GraceFDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope6
11WILLIAMS LilyHuman Powered Health3
12VAN DIJK EllenTrek - Segafredo2
13JASTRAB MeganTeam DSM2
14MANLY AlexandraTeam BikeExchange - Jayco1
15GUTIÉRREZ SheylaMovistar Team1
16KOCH FranziskaTeam DSM1
17OTTESTAD Mie BjørndalUno-X Pro Cycling Team1
1Canyon//SRAM Racing 37:59:29
2Team BikeExchange - Jayco0:36
3FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1:06
4Trek - Segafredo1:06
5Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling2:22
6Team SD Worx4:07
7EF Education-TIBCO-SVB4:33
8Movistar Team4:41
9Team DSM4:56
10Team Jumbo-Visma5:13
11Liv Racing Xstra6:04
12Team Coop - Hitec Products8:32
13CAMS - Basso14:10
14Uno-X Pro Cycling Team16:19
15Le Col - Wahoo19:38
16UAE Team ADQ20:37
17Human Powered Health29:34

Results provided by ProCyclingStats.

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