Lotte Kopecky from Team SD Worx maintained her overall lead in the Tour de France Femmes as her teammate Lorena Wiebes secured victory in stage three, cycling from Collonges-la-Rouge to Montignac-Lascaux in the Dordogne.
Wiebes, who had won two stages in the previous year’s race, clinched her third success in the Tour de France Femmes by making a thrilling last-minute pursuit, catching up with the day’s solo breakaway rider, Julie Van de Velde from the Fenix-Deceuninck team.
The 30-year-old Wiebes played a significant role in the stage, launching a solo attack from the peloton and establishing a considerable two-minute lead with 34km remaining in the race. But the chasing riders steadily eroded her advantage on the run-in to the finish, on the banks of the Vézère. Although, with 4km left, she still led by 30 seconds.
Despite a gusting headwind, Van de Velde led through the last bend and into the final straight, with victory in sight, but as she entered the last 200 metres, her legs failed her. Kopecky, Wiebes and Marianne Vos, of Jumbo-Visma, flew by with the 24-year-old Wiebes taking the win from Vos.
Meanwhile, world cycling’s governing body, the UCI, provisionally suspended Miguel Ángel López, the Colombian national time trial champion and a stage winner in the 2020 men’s Tour de France, due to a potential doping violation in the weeks before the 2022 Giro d’Italia. His Astana Qazaqstan team sacked him in December last year.