The UCI Women's WorldTour Chronicle
– What happened? –
Dutch dominance continues at the Boels Rental Ladies Tour: all three podium spots on the general classification and five out of six stages went to riders from the Netherlands. Annemiek van Vleuten (Orica Scott) won both the prologue and the individual time trial just a few seconds ahead of Ellen van Dijk (Team Sunweb) and went on to celebrate her first UCI Women's WorldTour stage race victory.
Anna van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans Cycling Team) won stage 5 through the Limburg hills finishing in Vaals and secured second place on the general classification with van Dijk third. And with Kirsten Wild (Cylance Pro Cycling) winning a bunchsprint on stage 2 in Arnhem as well as Janneke Ensing (Alé Cipollini) soloing to victory on the final day in Sittard, Lisa Brennauer (Canyon SRAM Racing) was the only foreigner to get a stage - on day 4 in a bunchsprint in Weert.
Beaten in Holland by her closest chaser, van der Breggen lost ground in the UCI Women's WorldTour overall ranking, but still leads by 27 points ahead of van Vleuten with one last race to go: the Madrid Challenge by La Vuelta. Neither BoelsDolmans Cycling Team nor Orica Scott will take to the start in the spanish capital, so van der Breggen can call herself UCI Women's WorldTour Overall Winner 2017 one race early - just like Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Cervélo-Bigla Pro Cycling Team) already won the young rider classification and BoelsDolmans Cycling Team the team classification.
– What's next? –
Sunday, 10th September: Madrid Challenge by La Vuelta (ESP)
– Photo of the week –
– Focus on: Linda Villumsen –
Born in Herning, Denmark, where the European Road Championships took place in August, Villumsen is racing on Elite level since more than ten years and did so under two different flags: in 2009 she became a citizen of New Zealand and started to race with a Kiwi licence a season later.
Both as a danish and a new zealandian rider she won the Route de France Féminine and in 2009 she also climbed on the top spot of the podium at Thüringen Rundfahrt.
Villumsen's biggest strength is her great talent as a time trialist and her ability to peak at the right time. No matter how strong or weak her season was, you can nearly always rely on her being strong at the UCI World Championships : in 2011 and 2013 she already won silver in the UCI individual time trial World Championships before becoming UCI World Champion against the clock in Richmond 2015.
So what about 2017? With a third place in the individual time trial at Boels Ladies Tour behind van Vleuten and van Dijk, Villumsen proofed to be on a good way to Bergen, Norway.