NTT Pro Cycling were crowned the first ever virtual Tour de France champions, after the final stage of the race ended in an exciting sprint on the Zwift virtual world Champs-Elysees course.
A fully committed team performance over the 3 weekends of racing saw NTT Pro Cycling go into stage 6, the final stage, of the virtual Tour de France leading every classification in the race. The goal for the South African UCI World Team was to hold off the challenge from the other 22 professional teams and make history by clinching the overall title.
Ryan Gibbons, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Max Walscheid and Rasmus Tiller were the four riders lined up for NTT Pro Cycling on the Champs-Elysees.
Being cheered on by the entire squad from the team’s base in Lucca. Italy, it looked like Gibbons was going to bookend the race with stage wins, but the South African road champion did not repeat his stage 1 victory and was narrowly beaten to the line, finishing in 3rd place on the stage.
Incredibly, Tiller, Walscheid & Boasson Hagen all managed to place inside the top 10 as well, taking 4th, 6th and 9th respectively.
NTT Pro Cycling’s commanding performance saw the team ride away with the yellow general classification classification jersey, the green points jersey, the polka dot king of the mountain’s jersey and the white jersey for the best young rider. The team also secured the victory in the overall team classification.
Douglas Ryder – Team Principal
To win the first ever virtual Tour de France, the team was just exceptional. This was an amazing opportunity for us to engage with people on a platform that is uniquely different, and I believe e-cycling racing is here to stay. We put a lot of effort into the event, as did NTT providing the data and analytics viewers could see on screen, so to win the first ever Le Tour Virtual is brilliant.
A thank you to the A.S.O for putting on the event, together with Zwift, as we were able to connect with people during a time when they have possibly never felt further apart. Inspiring hope into the lives of others is what our team’s mission has always been, and through incredible technology we were able to do this during the Virtual Tour de France.