• Annemiek Van Vleuten on the attack during Stage 2 of the Boels Ladies Tour (Getty)Source: Getty
Annemiek Van Vleuten continued to boss the Boels Ladies Tour soloing to victory on Stage 1, despite taking a wrong turn with five kilometres to go.
By
Cycling Central

Source:
Mitchelton-Scott
30 Aug 2018 - 12:09 PM  UPDATED 30 Aug 2018 - 8:19 PM

The race leader catapulted away from the lead group with 20 kilometres to go. But she almost lost her significant advantage after taking a wrong turn. 

The Dutchwoman doggedly returned back on course to hold off the chasing bunch by just 15 seconds. 

"I have mixed feelings because it was a crazy final," Van Vleuten explained. "There was no motorbike rider in front of me, I did a recon of the course so I did know it but there was maybe some road works there and I saw some arrows pointing there so I thought maybe they changed the course that is why I went the wrong way."

Mitchelton-Scott played the 132km stage in Nijmegen perfectly, reeling in breakaway riders Rosella Ratto (Cylance) and Amalie Dideriksen (Boels-Dolmans) before the penultimate climb on the seven-lap course.  Van Vleuten then applied the after burners, tearing the bunch apart with only Anna Van der Breggen (Boels-Dolmans) and Elisa Longo-Borghini (Wiggle-High5) able to follow. 

Team mate Amanda Spratt soon followed behind in a chase group and once it hooked back on to the leading trio, Van Vleuten attacked for the last time. 

"We had an awesome attack, we played it really well with Anna van der Breggen and Elisa Longo-Borghini in the front. Anna didn't want to ride, I don't know why, so I started to attack and then Spratt came with speed from behind at an amazing moment so then she had to chase. Then I took over with a good attack and then Anna was exposed with only Spratt in the wheel.

"I thought I lost the race and lost my time gap after the wrong turn but it was a good day in the end, the teamwork with Spratty was awesome and also Spratty can take a lot of confidence, she was super strong in the final attack.

"The girls also closed the gap in front really well so it was a good team effort and team win today so I look forward to racing with the team tomorrow."  

Van Vleuten rockets to victory in Boels Ladies Tour opener
The reigning ITT world champion rocketed around the 3km prologue course in Arnhem snatching victory from compatriots Anna Van Der Breggen and Ellen Van Dijk.