The British rider responded to Marianne Vos‘ (CCC-Liv) stinging early acceleration in the final 200-meters of the one-day race, bridging onto the Dutchwoman’s wheel and edging past her by a tire’s width. Deignan’s sprint came perfectly-timed as Vos began to fade having made her move from so far out.
Vos took second and Demi Vollering (Parkhotel-Valkenburg) finished third.
The win was Deignan’s first at La Course, adding to a prestigious palmarès that already includes a world title and numerous major one-day races.
“It’s really special to win here,” Deignan said. “I know that my husband and daughter are watching on television – I can’t wait to pick up the phone and speak with them.”
“I think I had an advantage that I had two of the best sprinters in the world in the team car in [sport directors] Ina-Yoko Teutenberg and Giorgia Bronzini – they’ve both beaten Marianne Vos in lots of sprints. I had their best advice and their advice was: ‘patience.’ So I took it and waited.”
Deignan’s victory comes off the back of a roller-coaster restart to the race season, having crashed out of three of her past six races, but rallying to win GP Plouay earlier this week.
“It’s phenomenal to win this,” she said. “Sometimes when you’re training hard and things aren’t going your way, it’s really frustrating, now finally it feels the luck is on our side. To be part of Trek-Segafredo is the best feeling because it’s a team victory.”
Annamiek van Vleuten had forced the selection with a move midway through the 96-kilometer race, attacking up the Rimiez climb to draw out the six that would play out the final.
The world champion’s move pulled out a who’s-who of riders she likely had not wished to be left with, with super-sprinter Vos and Trek-Segafredo pair Deignan and Elisa Longo Borghini still in contact, along with Vollering and Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM).
The world champion applied her big motor through the dragging climb but was unable to split the group. Deignan was the first to roll the dice and come off Van Vleuten’s wheel, putting in a fierce attack over the summit of the climb with 30km to go, but the group remained together.
With a flat 20km run-in to the city center finish, a group of around 20 chased hard behind the attackers on the wide, fast roads, with Sunweb leading the charge. Despite the pace-setting in the group behind, the leaders rotated well through the long highway drag back into Nice, stretching their advantage to toward two minutes.
Coming into the final 3km, the Trek-Segafredo duo started to pile on the pressure as they looked to work their numerical advantage and shed sprint threat Vos. With Deignan and her Dutch rival the two fastest-finishers in the bunch, Longo Borghini repeatedly attacked, forcing Vos to respond as Deignan marked her wheel.
Van Vleuten attacked in the final kilometer, anticipating that she would not take victory from a sprint, but was unable to make the gap.
With 200 meters to go, Vos launched her massive early sprint and looked to have distanced the pack. However, Deignan was able to drag herself onto Vos’ wheel just as the CCC-Liv rider began to fade, and edged past to win by the finest of margins.
— Trek-Segafredo (@TrekSegafredo) August 29, 2020
“It was such a relief that I won it,” Deignan said after the race. “What a performance from Trek-Segafredo today, every single rider played their part, then me and Elisa only had to wait for the finale and she did the perfect job: she forced Marianne to sprint early and I took advantage of that.”
La Course by Le Tour de France Results
|1||DEIGNAN Elizabeth||Trek-Segafredo Women||2:22:51|
|2||VOS Marianne||CCC - Liv||0:00|
|3||VOLLERING Demi||Parkhotel Valkenburg||0:00|
|4||NIEWIADOMA Katarzyna||Canyon SRAM Racing||0:00|
|5||VAN VLEUTEN Annemiek||Mitchelton-Scott||0:00|
|6||LONGO BORGHINI Elisa||Trek-Segafredo Women||0:07|
|7||FAHLIN Emilia||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||1:50|
|8||BALSAMO Elisa||Valcar - Travel & Service||1:50|
|9||PALADIN Soraya||CCC - Liv||1:50|
|10||LIPPERT Liane||Team Sunweb||1:50|
|11||KOPECKY Lotte||Lotto Soudal Ladies||1:50|
|12||HARVEY Mikayla||Équipe Paule Ka||1:50|
|13||BUJAK Eugenia||Alé BTC Ljubljana||1:50|
|14||RAGUSA Katia||Astana Womens Team||1:50|
|15||BARNES Hannah||Canyon SRAM Racing||1:50|
|16||BIANNIC Aude||Movistar Team||1:50|
|17||ROOIJAKKERS Pauliena||CCC - Liv||1:50|
|18||STEPHENS Lauren||Team TIBCO - SVB||1:50|
|19||NILSSON Hanna||Parkhotel Valkenburg||1:50|
|20||SANTESTEBAN Ane||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||1:50|
|21||LEVENEZ Sandra||Team Arkéa||1:50|
|22||SHAPIRA Omer||Canyon SRAM Racing||1:50|
|23||KIRCHMANN Leah||Team Sunweb||1:50|
|24||CAVALLI Marta||Valcar - Travel & Service||1:50|
|25||VAN DEN BROEK-BLAAK Chantal||Boels - Dolmans Cycling Team||1:50|
|26||MUZIC Évita||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||1:50|
|27||MAGNALDI Erica||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||1:50|
|28||SANGUINETI Ilaria||Valcar - Travel & Service||1:50|
|29||BANKS Elizabeth||Équipe Paule Ka||1:55|
|30||AMIALIUSIK Alena||Canyon SRAM Racing||1:58|
|31||LUDWIG Cecilie Uttrup||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||1:58|
|32||FISHER-BLACK Niamh||Équipe Paule Ka||2:08|
|33||BORGLI Stine||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||5:50|
|34||LELEIVYTĖ Rasa||Aromitalia Vaiano||5:50|
|35||CHRISTMAS Dani||Lotto Soudal Ladies||5:50|
|36||ASENCIO Laura||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||5:50|
|37||VAN DER BURG Nancy||Parkhotel Valkenburg||5:50|
|38||MARKUS Riejanne||CCC - Liv||5:50|
|39||BEEKHUIS Teuntje||Lotto Soudal Ladies||5:50|
|41||RICHIOUD Greta||Hitec Products||5:50|
|42||GUDERZO Tatiana||Alé BTC Ljubljana||5:50|
|43||SWINKELS Karlijn||Parkhotel Valkenburg||5:50|
|44||ARZUFFI Alice Maria||Bizkaia Durango||5:50|
|45||LABOUS Juliette||Team Sunweb||5:50|
|46||THOMAS Leah||Équipe Paule Ka||5:50|
|47||PATIÑO Paula Andrea||Movistar Team||5:50|
|48||GANZAR Leigh Ann||Rally Cycling Women||5:50|
|49||ŽIGART Urška||Alé BTC Ljubljana||5:50|
|50||WINDER Ruth||Trek-Segafredo Women||5:50|
|51||VAN DEN BOS Jip||Boels - Dolmans Cycling Team||5:50|
|52||HEINE Vita||Hitec Products||5:50|
|53||LUTRO Amalie||Hitec Products||5:55|
|54||POIDEVIN Sara||Rally Cycling Women||9:15|
|55||DIXON Leah||Team TIBCO - SVB||9:15|
|56||HOSKING Chloe||Rally Cycling Women||9:15|
|57||FRANZ Heidi||Rally Cycling Women||10:12|
|58||JACKSON Alison||Team Sunweb||10:17|
|59||HENDERSON Anna||Team Sunweb||10:17|
|60||MAJERUS Christine||Boels - Dolmans Cycling Team||10:17|
|61||PERSICO Silvia||Valcar - Travel & Service||10:17|
|62||BERTIZZOLO Sofia||CCC - Liv||10:17|
Results provided by ProCyclingStats.