However the peloton kept them in check and at round 3:00.
They were joined by Victoire Berteau (Cofidis), Antri Christoforou (Human Powered Health) to create a four-rider attack.
Today’s attack started like this, with Emily Newsom (EF Education-Tibco-SVB) and Anya Louw (AG Insurance-NXTG) attacking first.
For a moment Yuliia Biriukova (Arkea), India Grangier (Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime) and Henrietta Christie (Human Powered Health) formed a counter-attack but were quickly caught by the peloton.
🚴♀️ “We will try to control and hopefully other teams will help us” says @TeamDSM sports director @alberttimmer.🚴♀️ “Nous essayons de contrôler, en espérant que d’autres équipes viennent nous aider” confie @alberttimmer, le directeur sportif du @TeamDSM.#TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/WNvOsbR04oJuly 28, 2022
97km to go
The riders have covered 70km and entered the final 100km. Wisely the sprint teams have kept the break to a lead of 3:20.
⛰ The peloton passes the top of the Côte de Pagny-la-Blanche-Côte 3’45” after the leading group.⏱⛰ Le peloton passe au sommet de la Côte de Pagny-la-Blanche-Côte avec un retard de 3’45” sur la tête de course.⏱#TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/VkSEXhjkMdJuly 28, 2022
The 4 leaders still have a lead of 3:30 after the climb.
105km to go
Victoire Berteau (Cofidis) scored 2 points at the top of the Côte de Pagny-la-Blanche-Côte. Antri Christoforou scores another point for the mountains classification.
“I hope for a bunch sprint finish”, the World champion Elisa Balsamo (Trek-Segafredo) said at the start.
“It’s a dream for me to win a stage on the Tour de France.”
Lorena Wiebes (Team DSM) is the favorite to win this stage if it ends in a sprint.
She was clearly the strongest on the Champs-Elysées but lost lead out Charlotte Kool yesterday.
Trek-Segafredo also want to win at the Tour de France. Thanks to Elisa Balsamo they have an excellent chance of a stage win today. The world champion is a good sprinter even if she is not on her best form
Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma) is also a dangerous customer in a sprint. How nice would it be for her to win in the yellow jersey?
The race has settled but Team DSM are leading the peloton. They clearly want a sprint finish for Lorena Wiebes.
Wiebes won the opening sprint on the Champs-Élysées and has been in impressive form this season, already claiming 16 wins.
The four brave attackers are Victoire Berteau (Cofidis), Antri Christoforou (Human Powered Health), Emily Newsom (EF Education-Tibco-SVB) and Anya Louw (AG Insurance-NXTG).
120km to go
The peloton has finally eased and let the break go. It will now be up to the sprinters’ teams to keep them under control if they want to fight for the stage victory.
The gap is at 3:30.
Click below to read the full story and reaction from DS Rubens Bertogliati.
Mavi Garcia’s overall ambitions at the Tour de France Femmes Avec Zwift were wrecked by her own UAE Team ADQ team car during the final kilometres of stage 4 after the vehicle touched the Spanish champion’s rear wheel, causing her to crash.
She crossed the line in 33rd place, in a group of riders 3:11 down on the stage winner Marlen Reusser (SD Worx) and 1:31 down on the main group of general classification contenders.
She slipped to 11th overall, 2:26 down on race leader Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma).
Here’s the break of the day.
🇫🇷@velopipoire and 🇨🇾@andriachristor joined the breakaway. 4 riders are now leading the race.🇫🇷@velopipoire et 🇨🇾@andriachristor ont rejoint l”échappée. 4 coureuses sont désormais en tête.🇫🇷@velopipoire🇺🇸@emilyjoynewsom🇦🇺@AnyaLouw1🇨🇾@andriachristor#TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/Lt0hWOI1tlJuly 28, 2022
Today marks the halfway point of this first @LeTourFemmes! The riders have just completed the first 38.4km of today’s route and have now reached 50% of the total race distance.They climbed 3950m in the opening 4 stages but have 8362m of elevation gain remaining🏔️ #TDFF #TDFFdata pic.twitter.com/RsdG7nBniHJuly 28, 2022
Click here to read what Vos said.
Marianne Vos came through the gravel on stage 4 unscathed to finish fifth and maintained her lead in the overall classification at the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift.
The Jumbo-Visma rider is fighting to keep the yellow jersey for as long as possible but recognised that she will likely lose the overall lead when the race reaches the mountainous finale this weekend.
Click below to study the current GC standings.
Stage 4 of the Tour de France Femmes was expected to shake up the general classification. In the end, most of the GC contenders marked each other after several of them had crashed or punctured on the gravel sectors.
Marianne Vos (Team Jumbo-Visma) defended her maillot jaune, and there were no changes in the top-five where Silvia Persico (Valcar-Travel & Service) and Kasia Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) are at 16 seconds, Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) at 21 seconds, and Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (Team SD Worx) at 51 seconds.
130km to go
The riders are in a hillier section of the stage now but the pace remains high at 44km/h.
It was good to see the French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne at the start of the stage.
🇫🇷 Merci madame la Première ministre @Elisabeth_Borne pour votre visite et votre soutien.#TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/5wnrGUzJLxJuly 28, 2022
135km to go
The peloton is holding the attackers to a gap of 1:00.
142km to go
We appear to have the break of the day.
Victoire Berteau (Cofidis) and Antri Christoforou (Human Powered Health) have joined Emily Newsom (EF Education-Tibco-SVB) and Anya Louw (AG Insurance-NXTG) in the attack.
The peloton is at 1:00.
This is today’s stage.
“Those riders who have the endurance and strength will be victorious.”@spannawalker thinks fatigue will play a part today after 4 demanding stages and with special dispensation to run the race at this length, Stage 5 will be a new experience for the Peloton 🚴♀️🚴♀️ #TDFF #TDFFdata pic.twitter.com/TUcP2QUEiXJuly 28, 2022
Emily Newsom (EF Education-Tibco-SVB) and Anya Louw (AG Insurance-NXTG) remain out front with a gap of 20 seconds.
Human Powered Health also want to make the break and so lead the chase.
150km to go
The speed is close to 50km/h as the peloton chases the attackers.
🚴♀️💨 It’s a strong start! The pace is very high. 🚴♀️💨 C’est parti fort ! Le rythme est très élevé. #TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/CK27TM07bbJuly 28, 2022
After 15 kilometres there is the first attack of the day.
Emily Newsom (EF Education-Tibco-SVB) and Anya Louw (AG Insurance-NXTG) get a gap.
Annemiek van Vleuten is also looking forward to the longest stage.
“We can handle this. Bring it on,” she said.
Such a long stage seems tailor-made for Ellen van Dijk but she highlighted one problem.
“I like a stage like this but it can make the race more boring,” says the European champion.
The riders will cover 175.6 kilometers between Bar-le-Duc and Saint-Dié-des-Vosges. That is also the longest distance ever in a UCI women’s race.
There has been debate about if it right and sensible to race so long during an eight-day race but several riders at the start of the stage told Sporza they are in favour of the distance.
“I’m someone who likes to do long distances. I’m happy with it, it doesn’t scare me,” says Lotte Kopecky.
After 5km the peloton is still together.
We’re expecting a break to form but riders and team are rightly cautious with 175km to race.
The racing has started.
🚩 Km 0, stage 5 is on!🚩 Km 0, l’étape 5 est lancée ! #TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/C1M9Wtxg9rJuly 28, 2022
Today’s 175km stage is largely flat but does include 3 climbs.
After 60 kilometres the riders face the Côte de Pagny-la-Blanche-Côte (4th category). It is 1.4 kilometres long with an average gradient of 5.5%.
40 kilometres further on there is the Côte de Gripport (4th category). It is 1.3 kilometres long at 5.3%. At the top of both climbs, the first riders scores 2 QOM points and the second takes 1.
At 20 kilometres from the finish, the riders face the Col du Haut du Bois, where they can earn bonus seconds.
All the riders who finished yesterday’s stage are in action today, so we have 130 riders in the peloton.
🚩 3…2…1… Here we go! 🚩 3…2…1… C’est parti ! #TDFF #WatchTheFemmes pic.twitter.com/gu4MU5Pbz3July 28, 2022
#TDFF #WatchTheFemmes 📸 What you see 🤳What they see pic.twitter.com/D7Sa8kTHHYJuly 28, 2022
After the Champs-Elysées and Provins, the sprinters get another, perhaps final chance to win in Saint-Dié-des-Vosges.
This is probably the last chance for them in this year’s Tour.
Friday is hilly stage and ias followed by two tough mountain stages in the Voges at the weekend.
The riders face 4km of neutralised riding before the flag drops and the stage starts.
Here we go!
They Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift peloton rolls out of Bar-le-Duc.
Direction east to Saint-Dié-des-Vosges.
All the jersey wearers are on the start line, at the front of the grid.
Marianne Vos is still in the yellow leader’s jersey.
We’re just a few minutes from the stage start with riders careful to be hydrated and ready for the long day in the saddle.
Bonjour and welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of stage 5 of the 2022 Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift.