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Marianne Vos speaks about her Cyclopark success in the OVO Energy Women's Tour

By Craig Tucker

The Cyclopark was a hit with stage winner Marianne Vos in the OVO Energy Women's Tour.

Dutch great Vos took the green jersey after her success in Kent yesterday, beating Britain's Lizzie Deignan on the final lap.

Italian Elena Cecchini built an early 14-second lead, the Canyon-Sram rider winning the most combative jersey award, but that proved the only serious breakaway during a relentless 25 laps of the 2.5km circuit.

Marianne Vos (far left), makes her way round the Cyclopark Picture: Ady Kerry (12201845)
Marianne Vos (far left), makes her way round the Cyclopark Picture: Ady Kerry (12201845)

It was the first time a closed race circuit has been used on the Tour and while Vos said it may have looked "boring" to spectators, it was anything but.

She said: "If the bunch is doing 50kmh and dropping to maybe 45 and going to 55 again there's no option to get away.

"It's so hard. I think Cecchini did a great job to try.

"She's a really good rider and it's so hard to only stay away for only a couple of laps, especially when the pace is so high, it's really difficult to get away.

"On such a circuit you really need a strong breakaway from a couple of riders that can keep going.

"Today, it was a lot of action.

"In the bunch, you needed to get to the front all the time so I think from the sidelines it might have been a little sort of boring, one bunch going around, but in the group you're constantly trying to get some positions, get to the front, stay in the front.

"It was actually interesting for us to do such a thing."

Vos suffered a flat tyre in the second half of the race but a quick change of bike avoided any drama.

Marianne Vos (far left), makes her way round the Cyclopark Picture: Ady Kerry (12201845)
Marianne Vos (far left), makes her way round the Cyclopark Picture: Ady Kerry (12201845)

"No, I actually didn't worry at all," she said. I was like, 'OK, it happens let's change bikes'.

"It was 11 laps to go so there was plenty of time.

"I've had more difficult positions, less good places to have a flat tyre this year, so actually it was OK."

The crowd were cheering on British rider Deignan as the former world champion chased her first win since the birth of her daughter.

But it was 2012 Olympic champion Vos who came through for the CCC-Liv team, taking the stage win and the green jersey.

Vos said: "I saw a gap opening up at 200 metres to go, I came from the back so I thought, 'OK if I don't go now I'll be late so I'll have to go and see if I can open up a gap' and then I did.

"I just kept going and I saw no wheels coming so that was of course a great feeling."

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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