Rally Cycling’s Sara Poidevin soared to third place on the queen stage of the Tour de l’Ardèche today. Starting in Châteauneuf-de-Gadagne, the peloton snaked its way north on a brutal 116 km stage that featured over 8,000 ft of climbing. With little respite from the climbs in southern France, the drastically reduced peloton reached the bottom of the historic Mont Ventoux climb in pieces. Poidevin was one of a select group of climbers that was strong enough to contest the stage, sprinting to third and stretching her lead in the Best Young Rider classification.
After overcoming a late crash in yesterday’s stage to take the lead in the BYR competition, Poidevin showed her resilience and experience on the slopes of the infamous Mont Ventoux.
“Today’s climb was brutal,” said Poidevin. “A few girls attacked but I just knew I had to be patient and chase them back instead of trying to follow. I was able to bring everyone back except for the winner and sprinted against her teammate at the top. It was really satisfying considering I crashed hard yesterday. There is no guarantee that things will go your way in a race and I’m pleased with today.”
The 2018 Amgen Tour of California BYR winner is no stranger to the international podium and is already thinking about the difficult stages to come, a good sign for Rally Cycling’s leader.
“I’m super happy with my effort and am excited for more hard racing to come,” said Poidevin. “The Mont Ventoux climb was only a small part of the stage and we had to be attentive and in position all day. The team has been great and we’ll chase the opportunities as they come in the remaining stages.”
The second summit finish of this year’s race awaits the peloton on stage five. Starting in Grandrieu and traveling south for 138 km, the riders will climb four categorized climbs before finishing atop Mont Lozere. Expect today’s top finishers to mark each other as rider’s lower in the standings attack for stage honors.
Stage 4 results
1 MERINO CORTAZAR EIDER ESP 3h39m33s
2 GARCIA CANELLAS MARGARITA ESP at 32s
3 POIDEVIN SARA RLW at 32s
4 NIEWIADOMA KATARZYNA CSR at 40s
5 HALL KATHARINE USA at 1m30s
6 WINDER RUTH USA at 2m29s
7 AALERUD KATRINE NOR at 2m29s
8 MAGNALDI ERICA BPK at 2m29s
|9 GILLOW SHARA FDJ at 3m08s
10 LAMAS GARCIA LORENA ESP at 4m40s
General classification after stage 4
1 GARCIA CANELLAS MARGARITA ESP 10h13m23s
2 NIEWIADOMA KATARZYNA CSR at 8s
3 MERINO CORTAZAR EIDER ESP at 10s
4 POIDEVIN SARA RLW at 22s
5 HALL KATHARINE USA at 1m20s
6 WINDER RUTH USA at 1m57s
7 MAGNALDI ERICA BPK at 2m37s
8 AALERUD KATRINE NOR at 2m39s
9 GILLOW SHARA FDJ at 2m51s
10 SHEKEL OLGA UKR at 4m33s