Lisa Brennauer has sprinted to victory today in the opening stage of the Auensteiner Radsporttage tour in Auenstein. The CANYON//SRAM Racing rider took the win ahead of Ashleigh Moolman (CBT) and Annemiek van Vleuten (OGE) as the three rider breakaway came to the finish line in a sprint.
Brennauer’s team mate Barbara Guarischi was in the early move and animated the first half of the race. “‘Barbara was really strong today. When her break with Lotta Lepistö (CBT) came back to the peloton, another attack immediately went and Barbara was there in it again! As we came to the bottom of the climb, the peloton was bringing that break back and then van Vleuten attacked,” said Brennauer.
“I have to say that it was really nice to have Trixi (Worrack) back with us racing today! At that moment when van Vleuten attacked it was Trixi who yelled at me that I had to make it. It was the race winning decision. When we arrived to the top of the climb there were just three of us, van Vleuten, Moolman and myself.”
With four laps and 32 kilometres remaining the trio worked together and although the gap was never more than 55 seconds, the peloton could not make contact again. “With two laps to go van Vleuten punctured but she rejoined us and basically in the end we arrived in a sprint to the finish line. I’m really happy to have the win and to have the yellow leader’s jersey in our team before tomorrow.”
Worrack, in her first race since emergency removal of a kidney as a result of a crash in March, finished in the main peloton. The current German national road champion said “I feel pretty good. I felt like I could do something in the race so that was nice. Hopefully I will recover good and be ready for tomorrow’s double stage!”
Brennauer commented that Worrack has quickly stepped back into her role within the team. “I’ve missed having Trixi and her comments within the race. There were situations today, just small things that Trixi would pick up on and tell you, or even yell,” laughed Brennauer. “But it’s that critical feedback that is so valuable. I know that we’re all happy to have her back.”
The final day tomorrow is a split stage with a morning individual time trial and an afternoon 82 kilometre road stage.