Biehler Pro Cycling once again has come close to its first-ever UCI victory. Marissa Baks sprinted to a brilliant second place in the opening stage of the 2019 Vuelta a Burgos, her best result in a UCI race.
The 20-year old Baks, who won the tough Skandis GP criterium last week, was part of a breakaway that formed early in the stage. After a second place on the only categorised climb of the day (Baks ended just behind Rotem Gafinovitz, who took the QOM jersey) she then went on to almost winning the stage when the group stayed clear of the bunch. Baks was the second fastest in the sprint, finishing just behind winner Karlijn Swinkels.
“We were really alert in the first kilometres of the race and on a little climb I managed to escape”, Baks recalls. “The pace in the first was high and we managed to get a decent lead on the peloton. On the climb, I tried to go for the mountain jersey, but I was boxed in and wasn’t able to overtake Rotem Gafinovitz, so I had to settle for second.”
“In the closing kilometres, it became clear we would stay away so I prepared for the sprint. I was in fifth position going into the final corner and from there it was just about going full gas until the line. Karlijn went through the final corner first and she finished it off. In hindsight, I maybe was a little a bit too far back, but I am still very happy with this second place. This result is something I did not expect coming into this race. This for sure is a great confidence boost.”
After the opening stage, Baks currently sits in second place in all classifications and therefore she is allowed to wear the green jersey tomorrow. “That is a great reward for a great ride”, the teams DS Stefan van Klink says. “Marissa did great today and she has every right to be happy about this result. Obviously, we hope we can build on this tomorrow, but we will have to see how the race develops. The mountain jersey is something we target, but we also hope to do well on the uphill finish with both Marissa and Teuntje. It will be very interesting to see how we will do there.”
Results Biehler Pro Cycling in second stage Vuelta a Burgos
2. Marissa Baks
20. Nienke Wasmus
52. Henrietta Colborne
60. Roos Hoogeboom