Internationale Thurigen Rundfahrt der Frauen: Stage 1

23 Jul

Statistics:

Start time: 1:30pm

Distance: 119km

Start Location: Gera, Germany

End Location: Gera, Germany

Race Time: 3hours 10minutes

Average Speed: 37kph

Altitude Gained: 2850feet

The Course:

I have a feeling I will be saying this a lot for the next few days…but the race was up, then down, then up, then down.  You get the point.  We are in a very rolling area.  The hills varied in length and steepness.  The hardest hill was 8km from the finish.  It was around 1.5km in length and had a significant grade.  The finish was slightly uphill with some cobbles.

The Race:

We had a 5km neutral out of town.  It was pretty mellow at the beginning.  Things didn’t start heating up until about 15km into the race.  There was a time bonus sprint at 27km in. 3, 2, and 1 second bonuses were on the line.  This sprint was at the top of a hill.  Judith took the 3 seconds and Chloe took 1 second.  From this point in the race, attacks went off randomly.  There would be a series of attacks, then a lull.  Finally, a rider escaped.  Helen Wyman of Horizon Fitness got a sizeable gap on the peloton.  It went up to three minutes at one point.  Eventually we decided to take control of the chase.  The peloton was just rolling along, with no one taking the front.  They were all looking at us, which made sense.  We did have the yellow jersey.  Adrie and Chloe pulled back the single rider just after the third intermediate time bonus sprint.  From here, there was 10km left in the race.  There was pretty much non-stop attacking from here on out.  We hit the GPM climb and Noemi Cantele of Garmin-Cervelo attacked.  I followed.  We had a little gap but not much.  Eventually we were caught, and Emma Pooley countered.  Amber went with the move, and there was a group of around ten riders that got a gap.  At the top of the climb, it was false-flat in an open area.  Then it went downhill towards the finish.  We caught the group on the downhill.  From there, we knew it would be a field sprint.  Adrie and Judith did a great job getting Ina into position.  Ina took the win with a sizeable gap in the sprint.  Judith finished 7th after an awesome lead out.  G.C. stayed pretty much the same.  The only notable change in the top five was Lizzie Armistead of Garmin Cervelo moved into 3rd place with the time bonuses she picked up.  Ina will wear yellow tomorrow.

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