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Women’s Geelong Tour - UCI World Cup Stage 1 & 2
 
By Bart Hazen
Date: 2/21/2008
Women’s Geelong Tour - UCI World Cup Stage 1 & 2
 

Women’s Geelong Tour - UCI World Cup Stage 1 & 2
Australian road champion Oenone Wood (Team High Road) claimed victory on the stage 2 - Cervelo/Lifeforce's Christiane Soeder took the leader's purple jersey on the strength of her ITT.

Today the women’s Geelong Tour in Australia kicked off with a short time-trial of 8 km followed by a 75.9 km road circuit in Portarlington. Christiane Soeder is the overall leader after day one. Tomorrow will be the final tough stage of 155 km in Lara which goes over the infamously steep Mt Wallace.

Stage 1: Portarlington Time Trial - 8km
The first stage in the 2008 women’s Geelong Tour was a short time-trial of 8 km in Portarlington. The bronze medalist of the time-trial at the Worlds Christiane Soeder won the time-trial in a time of 11:28 with an average of 41.858 km/h. Soeder, who is riding for the Cervelo-Lifeforce team, outclassed her fellow contenders as Susanne Ljungskog (Menikini) finished 36 seconds down in second. Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (High Road) finished 37 seconds down in third.

The Northern Americans didn’t miss their season start at all. Katheryn Mattis (5th), Kristin Armstrong (6th), Alex Wrubleski (9th) and Christine Thorburn (11th) had a solid ride against the clock today.

Stage 1 Results
1 Christiane Soeder (Aut) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team 11.28
2 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Menikini Selle Italia 0.36
3 Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (Ger) Team High Road 0.37

4 Leonie Burford (Aus) NSWIS - CBD - Degani 0.49
5 Katheryn Mattis (USA) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 0.54
6 Kristin Armstrong (USA) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team 0.55
7 Katherine Bates (Aus) Team High Road 1.00
8 Judith Arndt (Ger) Team High Road 1.00
9 Alex Wrubleski (Can) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 1.01
10 Linda Villumsen Serup (Den) Team High Road 1.06
11 Christine Thorburn (USA) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 1.10
12 Vicki Whitelaw (Aus) Landlink ACTAS Cycling Team 1.13
13 Charlotte Becker (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 1.14
14 Oenone Wood (Aus) Team High Road 1.14
15 Chantal Beltman (Ned) Team High Road 1.14
16 Alison Powers (USA) US National Team 1.15
17 Edita Pucinskaite (Ltu) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 1.18
18 Bridie O'donnell (Aus) Australian National Team 1.20
19 Amanda Spratt (Aus) Australian National Team 1.21
20 Katharine Carroll (USA) US National Team 1.21

Stage 2: Portarlington Road Circuit - 75.9 km
The second stage was the circuit race of  75.9 km in Portarlington. The stage was well suited for the sprinters as the stage was flat.

In the beginning of the race there were a number of attacks, but only Serena Sheridan (New Zealand) gained a substantial gap on the field. But the bunch was brought back together in the final (of three local laps) lap of the race.

The sprinters teams, especially High Road, took control in the bunch to keep it together. In the end High Road proved to have the fastest legs with Oenone Wood winning the stage team mate Teutenberg second. and former World Champion Regina Schleicher of Equipe Nürnberger in for third.

For Wood it’s her second victory this season as she won the road race at the Australian National Championships mid January. Christiane Soeder, who is the reigning national TT champion of Austria, remains in the lead. Ina-Yoko Teutenberg moved up to second due to the time bonuses and Susanne Ljungskog dropped to third.

Soeder will head into tomorrow's third and final stage with a 25 second overall lead from Teutenberg with Ljungskog sitting third overall at 29 seconds.Wood is leading the Sprint Classification and her Team High Road team mate, Linda Villumsen (DEN) is leading the Best Young Rider U23 classification.

Team comments
High Road Sports

The Team High Road women finished strongly today in the first day racing in Geelong, Australia.
The day started with an 8km Time Trial in the morning and was followed by a 75km circuit race in the afternoon with Oenone Wood winning the bunch sprint from her teammate Ina-Yoko Teutenberg.

Teutenberg also placed third in the morning's time trial and Linda Villumsen took home the Young Rider's jersey. "We're really happy with our day," said Teutenberg. "The girls did a perfect lead out this afternoon. They were supposed to be leading out me but I knew Oenone was strong so I opened up the gap and she held it to the line."

Stage 2 Results
1 Oenone Wood (Aus) Team High Road 1.57.19
2 Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (Ger) Team High Road
3 Regina Schleicher (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung

4 Miho Oki (Jpn) Menikini Selle Italia
5 Lorian Graham (Aus) Vrienden Van Het Platteland
6 Vicki Whitelaw (Aus) Landlink ACTAS Cycling Team
7 Sarah Düster (Ger) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team
8 Tina Mayolo Pic (USA) Vrienden Van Het Platteland
9 Patricia Schwager (Swi) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team
10 Peta Mullens (Aus) Australian National Team
11 Lang Meng (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling
12 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Menikini Selle Italia
13 Lauren Franges (USA) US National Team
14 Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Australian National Team
15 Jenny Macpherson (Aus) Landlink ACTAS Cycling Team
16 Carlee Taylor (Aus) QAS
17 Kristin Armstrong Savola (USA) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team
18 Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Aus) Landlink ACTAS Cycling Team
19 Amanda Spratt (Aus) Australian National Team
20 Emma Mackie (Aus) Lotto-Belisol Ladies Team

General Classification after stage 2
1 Christiane Soeder (Aut) Cervelo-Lifeforce Team 2.08.51
2 Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (Ger) Team High Road 0.27
3 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Menikini Selle Italia 0.32

4 Leonie Burford (Aus) NSWIS - CBD - Degani 0.51
5 Katheryn Mattis (USA) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 0.56
6 Kristin Armstrong Savola (USA) Cervelo-Lifeforce Team 0.57
7 Oenone Wood (Aus) Team High Road 0.58
8 Alexis Rhodes (Aus) Team High Road 1.02
9 Judith Arndt (Ger) Team High Road
10 Alex Wrubleski (Can) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 1.03
11 Linda Villumsen Serup (Den) Team High Road 1.08
12 Vicki Whitelaw (Aus) Landlink ACTAS Cycling Team 1.09
13 Christine Thorburn (USA) Webcor Builders Cycling Team 1.12
14 Charlotte Becker (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 1.16
15 Chantal Beltman (Ned) Team High Road
16 Alison Powers (USA) US National Team 1.17
17 Sarah Düster (Ger) Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team 1.20
18 Edita Pucinskaite (Ltu) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 1.21
19 Amanda Spratt (Aus) Australian National Team 1.23
20 Sara Carrigan (Aus) Lotto-Belisol Ladies Team 1.24

WOOD WINS STAGE TWO BUT SOEDER LEADS OVERALL

Reigning Australian road champion Oenone Wood (Team High Road) claimed victory on the second stage of the 2008 Geelong Tour today, but the leader's purple jersey remains on the shoulders of Austrian Christiane Soeder (Cervelo - Lifeforce) after a strong performance in the opening time trial.

"Today was a hard race but my team did a good job, and I tried to do a good job too," said Soeder. "I think that tomorrow will be hard again but I am looking forward to it."

Eighty nine of the world's best cyclists lined up in the opening stage of the 2008 Geelong Women's Tour, with Soeder repeating her time trial win of the 2006 Geelong Tour, scorching the around the eight kilometre coastal circuit in 11.28.03, 35.71 seconds ahead of Sweden's Susanne Ljungskog (Menikini Selle Italia), with German star Ina Teutenberg (Team High Road) in third.

"I wasn't expecting to win by 30 seconds, I expected to win, but not by 30 seconds," Soeder exclaimed after claiming her first tour leader's jersey. "I prepared very well this year, I was not sick and had no problems.

"It was a very good winter," added the Austrian who has been based in Melbourne for the past four weeks with her Italian team. "This [the tour] is the final preparations for Sunday (Geelong World Cup) and (preparation) for the whole season so it is very important for us being the Olympic season."

Leonie Burford (NSWIS/Degani) was the leading Australian in the time trial with the 24 year old geologist from the isolated New South Wales town of Cobar surprising herself with her fourth place finish. "[I didn't expect it] at all, I was thinking top thirty," said Burford. "I just kept thinking that I was late for work, so I will just ride as fast as I can."

Stage Two took the riders on three laps of a picturesque 25km circuit out and back from Portarlington along the Bellarine Peninsula. Heading into the final 300m Wood unleashed a burst of speed and sailed across the line for the win.

She finished two bike lengths clear of her delighted team mate, Tuetenberg, to give High Road the quinella with Germany's Regina Schleicher (Team Nurnberger) in third place. "I was doing the lead out for Ina, as she is normally the best sprinter in the team, so we normally work for her," said Wood. "But she saw a chance for me to get away, so she let me go."

Earlier in the race New Zealand's Serena Sheridan launched a solo attack and managed to stay clear for most of lap two but early in the final lap she was reeled in as Team High Road took control of the bunch.

"The team (High Road) did a really good job, starting with Alexis (Rhodes) and I was just the last person in the lead out before Ina (Tuetenberg)," said Wood.
www.geelongworldcup.com

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