3 weeks agoby Tom Soladay

Tour For All opener yields pair of top 10s

Doebel-Hickok, Coté lead team on virtual course around Innsbruck

Rally Cycling blasted out of the virtual starting gates on the opening stage of Zwift’s Tour For All, with Krista Doebel-Hickok finishing seventh and Pier-André Coté claiming fifth against a world-class peloton. The 53 km stage around Zwift’s Innsbruck course featured six ascents of the ‘leg-snapper’ climb that delivered back-to-back reduced bunch sprints.

Doebel-Hickok, who has been riding almost exclusively on her stationary trainer over the last month, was a constant force to be reckoned with throughout the stage. Her strong finish propelled the team into the top 10 in the overall points standings.

It was satisfying to see that all my hard work over the last few months has paid off,” said Doebel-Hickok. “I’ve not only gained fitness but also improved my understanding of the virtual platform and today it showed.”

Following the team’s participation during last month’s Digital Swiss 5 which was held on the Rouvy platform, adjustments were made to account for the added drafting and mid-race “PowerUps” on Zwift. Coté, who was familiar with Zwift prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, showed his experience by not only making the front group but also challenging for the win in the final 200 meters.

“Today is what Zwift racing is all about, going as hard as you can on the climbs in hopes of reaching the finish with decent legs,” laughed Coté. “I’m really happy with my sprint, especially since I didn’t have any powerups in the finale.”

Tuesday’s second stage takes the riders through the cobbled streets of Richmond, VA for a total of 46 km. Many will recognize the course from the 2015 UCI World Road Race Championships. All Tour For All stages will be broadcast daily on Eurosport and through GCN’s mobile app from 8 am – 10 am CDT.

Women’s stage 1 results
1 MARIANNE VOS [CCC]
2 CECILIE UTTRUP LUDWIG [FDJ]
3 LEAH DIXON [TIB]
4 ANNA VAN DER BREGGEN [DLT]
5 SIMONE BOILARD [T20]
6 JESS PRATT [CSR]
7 KRISTA DOEBEL-HICKOK [RLW]
8 TANJA ERATH [CSR]
9 JASMIN DUEHRING [T20]
10 SILVIA POLLICINI [VAL]

Men’s stage 1 results
1 FREDDY OVETT [ISN]
2 EMMANUEL MORIN [COF]
3 MATHIEU VAN DER POEL [AFC]
4 RYAN GIBBONS [NTT]
5 PIER-ANDRÉ CÔTÉ [RLY]
6 RIGO URAN [EF1]
7 DAN MARTIN [ISN]
8 ALEXANDER RICHARDSON [AFC]
9 FRED WRIGHT [TBM]
10 MITCHELL DOCKER [EF1]