Tour of Britain: Marianne Vos wins inaugural women's race

Marianne Vos wins Tour of Britain

Dutch star Marianne Vos wrapped up victory in the inaugural women's Tour of Britain by winning the final stage.

It was a third successive stage win for the 26-year-old Olympic and world road-race champion, who outsprinted Giorgia Bronzini in Bury St Edmunds.

Amy Pieters of the Netherlands was third on the stage, with Britain's Hannah Barnes in fourth.

Swede Emma Johansson finished second overall, 30 seconds behind Vos, with Briton Lucy Garner in seventh.

"I have won many titles before, and some gold medals, but this women's Tour is really special because it means so much to women's cycling," Vos told BBC Sport.

"The pressure was really on but the team did such a great job to keep me in the race.

"I have good memories of Great Britain with the Olympics, but these crowds really made a difference."

Vos started the day 19 seconds clear of Johansson, and took 10 bonus seconds for winning the sprint finish in the Suffolk town to clinch a dominant victory.

Italy's Rossella Ratto was third overall while Britain's Lizzie Armitstead, who started the day fourth, withdrew before the final stage after a week of battling illness.

Two-time world junior champion Garner ended the race as best-placed Briton, with Barnes a place behind. Both were 50 seconds adrift of Vos.

"I am really proud to be wearing the best British rider jersey, especially racing on home soil, but it is a shame Lizzie couldn't carry on because of illness," Garner, 19, told BBC Sport.

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"It has been amazing; the racing, the crowds and support have been beyond anything I have ever seen before."

British cyclist Sharon Laws won the 'Queen of the mountain' jersey, awarded for attaining points during designated 'climb' sections during each stage of the event.

The United Health Care rider led the standings from the opening day and held off the challenge of Swiss cyclist Jolanda Neff on the final stage.

"Every day was a challenge and Neff is a fantastic mountain biker so I'm really pleased to hold on and be here in this jersey," she said.

Britain's double Olympic track champion Laura Trott, who had a heavy crash on stage three, ended 55th overall and crossed the finish line alongside her sister Emma, who is retiring.

Friends Life Women's Tour stage five results:

1. Marianne Vos (Ned/Rabo-Liv) 2:48:10"

2. Giorgia Bronzini (Ita/Wiggle Honda) same time

3. Amy Pieters (Ned/Netherlands)

4. Hannah Barnes (GB/UnitedHealthcare)

5. Emma Johansson (Swe/Orica AIS)

6. Elena Cecchini (Ita/Estado de Mexico Faren)

7. Chloe Hosking (Aus/Hitec products)

8. Aude Biannic (Fra/LKT)

9. Elise Delzenne (Fra/SLU)

10. Leah Kirchmann (Can/Optum)

General classification

1. Marianne Vos (Ned/Rabo-Liv) 12:42:07"

2. Emma Johansson (Swe/Orica AIS) +30"

3. Rossella Ratto (Ita/Estado de MexicoFaren) +35"

4. Giorgia Bronzini (Ita/Wiggle Honda) +38"

5. Susanna Zorzi (Ita/BPK) +44"

Selected others:

7. Lucy Garner (GB/Great Britain) +50"

8. Hannah Barnes (GB/UnitedHealthcare) same time

26. Dani King (GB/Wiggle Honda) +58"

55. Laura Trott (GB/Wiggle Honda) + 13'59"

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