• Jolien D'hoore wins OVO Energy Women's Tour opening stage. (Getty)Source: Getty
Mitchelton-Scott's Jolien D’hoore opened up the 2018 OVO Energy Women’s Tour by sprinting to victory at the end of the 130km stage from Framlingham to Southwold.
Cycling Central

OVO Energy Women's Tour
14 Jun 2018 - 7:59 AM  UPDATED 15 Jun 2018 - 10:05 AM

D’hoore capitalised on a strong leadout and hit the front with 340 metres to go to take the victory and overall lead ahead of Marta Bastianelli (Alé Cipollini) and Coryn Rivera (Sunweb).

"Even before today’s stage I wasn’t sure where I was at with my form," D’hoore said. "But the team had 100 per cent trust in me and they gave me a perfect lead out going into the finish. It’s really great to start with a win, the pressure is off now.

"The stage was pretty flat and everyone knew that it was going to come down to a sprint, but it got pretty nervous and hectic going into the final and thankfully I was in a really good position on the last corner.

"I started my sprint a little early but managed to hold on and it worked out really well in the end. We had a plan going into the stage and we stuck to it perfectly. The finish was quite tricky going into the wind and slightly uphill, but it couldn’t have gone any better."

D’hoore also takes the points jersey thanks to her win, while the Boels-Dolmans team captured both the mountains classification with Christine Majerus and sprints through Amy Pieters.

Stage 2 of the OVO Energy Women’s Tour is a 143km stage from Rushden to Daventry and features a double ascent of Newnham Hill, which measures 1.5km in length at a six per cent gradient.

The second ascent of the climb comes just three kilometres from the finish and is likely to prove decisive in the outcome of the stage.