Tour de France: a landmark week for Magdeleine Vallières-Mill

Tour de France: a landmark week for Magdeleine Vallières-Mill

When she was younger, Magdeleine Vallières-Mill watched the mythical Tour de France and was convinced that one day she would pedal there. The first edition of the women’s Tour de France this week allowed her to make her dream come true.

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“We wanted to go to the Tour de France with my dad and I said I was going to do it with the men,” said the Sherbrooke resident at the end of the eighth and final stage of the Grande Boucle.

“Of course I grew up realizing it wasn’t possible, but I hope a lot of young girls will have the chance to have the same experience!”

Sunday’s race started with several attacks and Team EF Education – TIBCO-SVB from Vallières-Mill answered the call. Especially on the first climb of the day, the Côte d’Esmouliéres, the peloton quickly lost its feathers.

Magdeleine Vallières-Mill found herself in the gruppetto climbing the Ballon d’Alsace and stayed there until the finish. She reached the top of the Planche des Belles Filles as 39th (+13 minutes 12 seconds). She is 66th in the overall standings and ninth in the youth rankings.

“I’m really happy with my tour! With Veronica we have reached our goal [Ewers] who is in the top 10 overall. I did my best to help as much as possible at all stages and I think I can be proud of that.”

Ewers also finished seventh and ninth overall on Sunday. They were alongside several favorites clustered at the base of the Planche des Belles Filles.

Dutchwoman Annemiek Van Vleuten, winner of stage seven and wearer of the yellow jersey ever since, attacked with 5 kilometers to go. The leader of the Movistar formation, already dominant on this type of course, was entitled to the support of her Colombian teammate Paula Andrea Patino, who was also a member of a previous breakaway.

When Van Vleuten made that final attack, no one could keep up on the climb, which ended with a 24% gradient. She was heading for a second straight stage win, adding a Tour de France title to her already heavy list.

While Van Vleuten left no doubt about victory, the battle for the other two places on the overall podium was fierce. Her compatriot Demi Vollering (SD Worx), who once again proved to be very combative, ended up second in the stage (+30 seconds) and in the overall standings (+3 minutes 48 seconds).

Teammate of Olivia Baril at Valcar – Travel & Service, Italian Silvia Persico took a strong third place (+1min 43secs). She finished fifth overall.

Baril finished 75th on Sunday and is 104th overall, while Simone Boilard of the St Michel – Auber93 team was 67th on the stage. She finished the competition in 71st place overall and 11th in the youth rankings.

Magdeleine Vallières-Mill retains many positives from her performance in the first-ever women’s Tour de France. All that remains is to wish other cyclists the same.

“What impressed me the most was seeing the atmosphere of the tour! Just as many people were interested and they gave us just as much encouragement as on the Men’s Tour. I hope the Tour has encouraged the next generation of female cyclists,” she concluded.