11th GP Etrusca, March 24-25
Martina Corazza and Nicole Cooke are the winners
of the two races in the GP Etrusca. Mirjam Melchers (Team Flexpoint) made her
comeback after her rehabilitation.
By Bart Hazen
This weekend was the 11th edition of the GP Etrusca. This Italian race consisted
of two separate races. The first event in the GP Costa Etrusca was a race over
112 kilometer from Riparbella to Motescudaio in the province of Pisa. On the
following day the woman had to do a race over 102 kilometer from Santa Luce
to Castellina Marittima.
In these two races the woman had to do several climbs, on Saturday they had
to do the climb to Castellina and the climb to Montescudaio while on Sunday
they did the Castellina Marittima and the six kilometer finishing climb that
will carry the woman from Pomaia up the opposite side of the Castellina Marittima.
Mirjam Melchers (Team Flexpoint) made her comeback in these races after her
rehabilitation. She was out for several months after she broke her pelvis, jaw
and hip in a crash during the Euregio Ladies Tour 2006.
March 24: Riparbella - Monetscudaio, 112km
The first race in the GP Etrusca, was the one over 112km from Riparbella to
Monetscudaio. On the final climb we got a small group in front and the winner
was one of these girls. The race ended up in a sprint uphill and it was Martina
Corazza (FRW-Gauss) who won it ahead of Monia Baccaile (Saccarelli Emu Marsciano)
and Susanne Ljungskog (Team Flexpoint).
1 Martina Corazza (Ita) FRW - Gauss 3.05.55 (36.14
2 Monia Baccaille (Ita) Saccarelli Emu Marsciano
3 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Team Flexpoint
4 Noemi Cantele (Ita) Bigla Cycling Team
5 Nicole Cooke (GBr) Raleigh Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team
6 Fabiana Luperini (Ita) Menikini - Gysko
7 Andrea Graus (Aut) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung
8 Annette Beutler (Swi) Team Flexpoint
9 Emma Johansson (Swe) Vlaanderen - Capri Sonne - T Interim
10 Julia Martissova (Rus) FRW - Gauss
March 25: Santa Luce - Castellina Marittima, 102km
The second race in the GP Etrusca was one over 102 km between Santa Luca and
Castellina Marittima. Nicole Cooke (Raleigh Lifeforce) took an impressive win
at the second race in the GP Costa Etrusca with finish on top of the Castellina
On the Castellina Marittima, Nicole was 7 seconds faster than Fabiana Luperini
(Menikini Gysko) and 8 sec. faster than Nicole Brändli.
A decisive move came after 30 kilometer, which had split the field in two parts.
After that we got a formation of an eight woman break with Fabiana Luperini
(Menikini Gysko), Veronica Leal Balderas (FRW-Gauss), Nicole Brandli, Noemi
Cantele (both Team Bigla), Susanne Ljungskog (Team Flexpoint), Nicole Cooke
(Raleigh Lifeforce), Trixi Worrack and Eva Lutz (both Equipe Nurnberger).
The bunch didn't see the break anymore and on the final climb it was Cooke who
out climbed the others.
For Cooke it's another win after her wins in the Geelong Tour and the World
Cup of Geelong.
1 Nicole Cooke (GBr) Raleigh Lifeforce Pro Cycling
Team 2.48.53 (36.2 km/h)
2 Fabiana Luperini (Ita) Menikini - Gysko 0.07
3 Nicole Brändli (Swi) Bigla Cycling Team 0.08
4 Trixi Worrack (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 0.12
5 Noemi Cantele (Ita) Bigla Cycling Team 0.13
6 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Team Flexpoint 0.15
7 Eva Lutz (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 1.25
8 Verónica Leal Balderas (Mex) FRW - Gauss 1.39
9 Monia Baccaille (Ita) Saccarelli Emu Marsciano 3.55
10 Loes Gunnewijk (Ned) Team Flexpoint