Copponi takes Women’s Tour of Britain lead after ‘hectic’ stage

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Clara Copponi on the podium
France’s Clara Copponi is making her Women’s Tour of Britain debut

Women’s Tour of Britain debutant Clara Copponi moved into the overall lead as Amy Pieters won a “hectic” stage two.

British rider Pfeiffer Georgi, 21, led at the final turn but was overtaken in a sprint finish and came fifth in Walsall.

FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope’s Copponi, 22, was second, having come third in the opening stage.

“It was a hectic final,” said Pieters, who has previously won three Women’s Tour stages.

“It was an urgent sprint but it went well at the end.”

Georgi is the highest-placed Brit in the overall standings in eighth, 10 seconds behind Frenchwoman Copponi.

On Wednesday, the Women’s Tour’s first ever individual time trial will take place in Atherstone, with British time trial specialist Joss Lowden – who recently broke cycling’s prestigious hour record – competing.

Lowden is 25th overall and 52 seconds behind Copponi after the first two stages, with two-time winner Lizzie Deignan down in 45th and one minute and 18 seconds behind after her Paris-Roubaix triumph on Saturday.

Movistar Team’s Sheyla Gutierrez is third overall after finishing on the podium for the second time in a row as the riders completed 10 laps of a 10km circuit on day two.

Overnight leader Marta Bastianelli finished with the peloton 46 seconds behind the leaders and has slipped to 10th.

As well as the leader’s blue jersey, Copponi took the points jersey from Bastianelli, while Elisa Chabbey holds the queen of the mountains jersey and Nina Kessler retains the sprint jersey.

General classification

1. Clara Copponi (Fra/FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope) 6 hours 22 mins 34 secs

2. Amy Pieters (Ned/SD Worx) Same time

3. Sheyla Gutierrez (Spa/Movistar Team) +6 secs

4. Demi Vollering (Ned/SD Worx) +9 secs

5. Juliette Labous (Fra/Tream DSM) +10 secs

6. Elise Chabbey (Swi/Canyon SRAM Racing) Same time

7. Aude Biannic (Fra/Movistar Team)

8. Pfeiffer Georgi (GB/Team DSM)

9. Nina Kessler (Ned/Team TIBCO/-SVB) +38 secs

10. Marta Bastianelli (Ita/Ale BTC Ljubljana) +40 secs

Stage two results

1. Amy Pieters (Ned/SD Worx) 2 hours 38 mins 3 secs

2. Clara Copponi (Fra/FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope) Same time

3. Sheyla Gutierrez (Spa/Movistar Team)

4. Audrey Cordon-Ragot (Fra/Trek-Segafredo)

5. Pfeiffer Georgi (GB/Team DSM)

6. Elise Chabbey (Swi/Canyon SRAM Racing)

7. Maaike Boogaard (Ned/Ale BTC Ljubljana)

8. Aude Biannic (Fra/Movistar Team)

9. Juliette Labous (Fra/Tream DSM)

10. Demi Vollering (Ned/SD Worx)