“I kind of knew Mariske Strauss and I would race well together,” said Lill.
“But to have it proven gives us a lot of confidence for the rest of the race.”
Strauss added that the race only really started tomorrow.
“Having the leaders’ jerseys on our shoulders gives us a chance to race tactically and not take undue risks.”
Finishing first for the men was the CST Sandd Bafang MTB team of Sebastian Fini and David Nordemann, followed by Alexander Miler and Tristan de Lange (Danste Racing-Megatech) and Grant Ferguson and Maxime Marotte (Cannondale Factory Racing Two).
Fini and Nordemann finished the first stage with a time of 54:49 with a 27 second lead.
“I saw [Manuel] Fumic struggling with his chain and then we just pushed full gas,” said Fini.
“Sebastian was so strong, I just tried to hold his wheel,” added Nordemann.
“The trails here are amazing, but are kind of sketchy in places too. You have to really be careful. I pushed a bit to hard and caught my handlebar on a bush and went over the bars 6km from the finish. Fortunately, I was able to get up, straighten my bars and we could still win the stage.”
View results below.
Elite men’s teams
|1||Sebastian Fini and David Nordemann||CST Sandd Bafang MTB||54:49|
|2||Alexander Miler and Tristan de Lange||Danste Racing-Megatech||55:16|
|3||Grant Ferguson and Maxime Marotte||Cannondale Factory Racing Two||55:16|
|4||Urs Huber and Simon Stiebjhan||Team Bulls Heroes||55:20|
|5||Jaco Venter and Jacques Janse van Rensburg||Team First Move||56:30|
Elite women’s teams
|1||Candice Lill and Mariske Strauss||Faces CST||1:04:08|
|2||Robyn de Groot and Adelheid Morath||Dormakaba Blue||1:04:50|
|3||Nadine Rieder and Jennie Stenerhag||Team Fairtree||1:05:08|
|4||Barbara Benko and Anne Terpstra||Ghost Factory Racing||1:05:17|
|5||Annie Last and Isla Short||GB Cycling Team||1:06:52|