Peloton Watch
  Calendar   2015 Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen  
Start List
Race Preview
Race Report
Past Winners
  Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen Preview  
  Despite starting just days after the Giro Rosa it is a top class field for the Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen with Velocio-SRAM, Orica-AIS and Bigla all sending their top riders. Last years top two Evelyn Stevens and Lizzie Armitstead who both now ride for Boels Dolmans are not here with their squad skipping the race. Third place finisher Lisa Brennauer is here as is two-time winner Emma Johansson. With six of last years top 10 and a long list of top names the fight for the overall victory should be one of the most exciting of the year.

2014 Results

1 Evelyn STEVENS
2 Elizabeth ARMITSTEAD +42
3 Lisa BRENNAUER +1:31
4 Christine MAJERUS +4:15
5 Reta TROTMAN +4:40
6 Stephanie POHL +6:01
7 Beate ZANNER +6:21
8 Joanne HOGAN +6:26
9 Sofie DE VUYST +7:05
10 Anna PLICHTA +7:07

Prologue (ITT): Lisa BRENNAUER
Stage 1: Lizzie ARMITSTEAD
Stage 2: Romy KASPER
Stage 3 (ITT): Lisa BRENNAUER
Stage 4: Evelyn STEVENS
Stage 5: Baete ZANNER
Stage 6: Elke GEBHARDT

Past Winners

2014 - Evelyn Stevens
2013 - Emma Johansson
2012 - Judith Arndt
2011 - Emma Johansson
2010 - Olga Zabelinskaya
2009 - Linda Villumsen
2008 - Judith Arndt
2007 - Judith Arndt
2006 - Nicole Cooke
2005 - Theresa Senff
2004 - Zoulfia Zabirova
2003 - Valentina Polkhanova
2002 - Zoulfia Zabirova
2001 - Mirjam Melchers
2000 - Valentyna Karpenko

The Route

Stage 1 Gotha (66.6km)

Stage 2 Erfurt (103.3km)

Stage 3 Schmölln ITT (19km)

Stage 4 Meerane (78.8km)

Stage 5 Zeulenrodaer Meer (120km)

Stage 6 Gera (118.5km)

Stage 7 Schleiz (130km)

Stage 8 Greiz (98.8km)

The Contenders

Start list available here

Lisa Brennauer

Won both time trial stages last year and finished third overall. Could very well have won overall but was happy when a two rider break containing then teammate Evelyn Stevens went up the road and won by two minutes. Is the time trial World Champion and the 19km time trial on stage three will be a big help to her chances. Has only won one time trial this year at Gracia Orlova, that wasn't well contested with her Velocio-SRAM team taking the top five positions. It is a race that suits her well with the rolling terrain though the summit finish on stage 4 could hurt her chances. After finishing third the past two years will be eager to find that top step. Despite struggling against the clock has had a good season including the overall win at The Aviva Women's Tour.

Emma Johansson

Johansson made the decision to skip the Giro Rosa again this year, a plan she followed in 2013 and came out firing here winning overall for a second time and also taking two stages. Johansson is hoping the longer break will leave her fresher than many of her rivals who have a hard Giro in their legs. The rolling roads suit her and is climbing better than ever. Her sprint doesn't seem as quick this year so expect to see her attack even more often than usual to break up the field.

After an injury interrupted season Johansson has been her usual consistent self again since returning from a broken collarbone. Won Durango-Durango Emakumeen Saria, two stages and third overall at Euskal Emakumeen Bira, fourth at The Women's Tour before defending both her Swedish titles on the road.

Tibco (Stephens, Hogan and Hammes)

Tibco took a total of 7 podium finishes at Tour de Feminin and the win on the final stage with Kristabel Doebel-Hickok. The US squad has multiple options for the GC but on form Lauren Stephens is probably their best bet. Stephens finished second in the time trial and overall in the Czech Republic last week but has dominated in the US. Won the time trial at the Tour Femenino de San Luis and finished second overall, won both the time trial and overall at Joe Martin Stage Race, again won the time trial before finishing third overall at the Tour of the Gila. Second in the Tour of California Time Trial, 4th at the US National Championship and 5th Chrono de Gatineau before putting in a solid ride at the Women's Tour. It is not just the time trial Stephens excels at and should be able to produce a strong when the road starts to climb.

Jo Hogan is a second card for the team. Can time trial and climb well and if something was to happen to Stephens Hogan could produce a strong result. The experienced Aussie has finished in the top 10 before with eighth last year and as an important race for Australian's her motivation will be high. Keep an eye out for Kathrin Hammes as well.

Paulina Brzezna and Anna Plichta

Both ride for the Polish TKK Pacific Nestle Fitness squad and come in to the race after a strong Tour de Feminin last week. Brzezna won the opening stage before going on to finish seventh overall. While Plichta finished third in the important time trial and earned herself an overall podium finish. Both handle rolling terrain well and Plichta especially can produce a good time trial. On form and full of confidence but the quality of the field here is a big step up. To win would be a challenge but a top 10 is possible. Either way for Plichta the experience will be valuable for the 23 year old.

Australian National Team

It is a special race for the Australian National team and 2015 marks the 10th anniversary of the tragic passing for Amy Gillett. It is a strong team including Kimberley Wells who will be targeting wins in sprint finishes. The teams general classification hopes are likely to be on the shoulders of Ellen Skerritt and Jenelle Crooks. Both are very strong against the clock and stage 4 will be a good test for them on the climbs. They are among the best in Australia but this will be another step up for them. Crooks competed here last year finishing 19th and her performances in the Australian National Road Series indicate she has taken a step up this year. For Skerritt it will be her first UCI race in Europe and only her second UCI race.

Other names to watch: Eugenia Bujak, Amanda Spratt, Gracie Elvin,  Stephanie Pohl and Lucy Coldwell.
 © 2016