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Women's Fleche Wallonne (World Cup #5)
 
By Bart Hazen
Date: 4/24/2008
Women's Fleche Wallonne (World Cup #5)
 

Women's Fleche Wallonne (World Cup #5)
Marianne Vos wins the Fleche Wallone for the 2nd year in a row.

The 5th world cup of the season for women is the Fleche Wallonne. The leader in the World Cup before this race was Dutch Suzanne de Goede (Equipe Nürnberger).


Team USA during the pre-race team presentations. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

146 riders took the start at the top of the Mur de Huy at noon. The girls had to do 103,5 km through the Ardennes with finish again on top of the steep Mur de Huy. The weather was very sunny all day despite a threat of rain near the end.

The first kilometers were covered with the pack together as the favorites waited for the Mur de Huy. On the first climbs of the course riders were dropped off the back of the bunch. World Champion Marta Bastianelli crashed early on; but she quickly was up and rejoined the peloton.

With less than 50 km to go on the Cote de Bonneville it was Noemi Cantele (Bigla Cycling Team) who attacked. But her attempt didn’t last long as she was caught just as she reached the top of the climb.


Start of the climb, Flexpoint's Amber Neben climbs. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

On the next climb the bunch, which was still about 60/70 riders strong, stayed together. In the descent of this climb it was Alison Powers (USA) who attacked and went away on a solo effort; she was joined by Christiane Soeder (Cervelo-Lifeforce) a few kilometers later.

The attempt of Powers and Soeder didn’t stick with the peloton chasing the duo down in the next 5 km. The next to attack was a former winner of the race with Italian wonder woman, Fabiana Luperini (Menikini-Selle Italia); Fabiana attacked on the côte de Bohisseau and she quickly got a gap of over one minute on the bunch.


High Roads Arndt attacks, to the left Bastianelli and Neben. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

The bunch organized the chase and on the penultimate climb of the day the côte d'Ahin Luperini's gap was down to 18 seconds. On the D’Ahin another past winner Nicole Cook accelerated; her pace split the group to about thirty of the strongest riders with all the favorites like Marianne Vos, Judith Arndt, Alex Wrubleski, Kristin Armstrong and Marta Bastianelli making the transition to the front.

Despite the acceleration of Cooke not much happened after the D’Ahin either as the lead group raced to the final drama. Entering the Mur de Huy with 1 km to go it was defending champion Marianne Vos who attacked together with Judith Arndt as the weaker riders were shredded off the back.


Marta Bastianelli responds to the attack by Arndt. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

At about 200/300 meters Vos started her sprint and Arndt wasn't able to follow Vos who raced ahead to the finish to win her second Fleche Wallonne, two years in a row. On the finish line Arndt couldn't hold off World Champion Marta Bastianelli who finished as second, Arndt held on for third.

Redlands Bicycle Classic winner Alex Wrubleski surprised in a strong performance taking fourth place just ahead of fellow countrywoman, Amber Neben who completed the top 5.


Marianne Vos with the win became new leader of the World Cup. Suzanne de Goede is second and is 1 point down on Vos. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen


Fleche Wallone Podium: Judith Arndt, Marianne Vos, and World Champ Marta Bastianelli. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

La Fleche Wallone Womens Results
1. Vos Marianne 1 Team Dsb Bank 2h 46' 42"
2. Bastianelli Marta 241 Italie 2h 46' 43" + 00' 01"
3. Arndt Judith 21 Team High Road Women 2h 46' 44" + 00' 02"

4. Wrubleski Alexendra 126 Canada 2h 46' 51" + 00' 09"
5. Neben Amber 164 Team Flexpoint 2h 46' 55" + 00' 13"
6. Pooley Emma 15 Grande Bretagne 2h 46' 59" + 00' 17"
7. Brändli Nicole 151 Bigla Cycling Team 2h 46' 59" + 00' 17"
8. Cooke Nicole 11 Grande Bretagne 2h 46' 59" + 00' 17"


Marianne Vos Celebrates on the Podium.
Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen

9. Goor Sofie 225 Lotto-Belisol Ladiesteam 2h 47' 02" + 00' 20"
10. Decroix Lieselot 223 Lotto-Belisol Ladiesteam 2h 47' 04" + 00' 22"
11. Treier Grete 56 Gauss Rdz Ormu 2h 47' 07" + 00' 25"
12. Johansson Emma 113 Aa-Drink Cycling Team 2h 47' 07" + 00' 25"
13. Pucinskaite Edita 34 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung   00' 28"
14. Soeder Christiane 85 Cervelo Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team   00' 33"
15. Stiajkina Tatiana 181 Usc Chirio Forno D’asolo 2h 47' 17" + 00' 35"
16. De Goede Suzanne 31 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung  + 00' 37"
17. Schachl Monika 105 Autriche 2h 47' 23" + 00' 41"
18. Bruins Regina 171 Pays Bas 2h 47' 27" + 00' 45"
19. Polikeviciute Jolanta 185 Usc Chirio Forno D’asolo  + 00' 45"
20. Doppmann Priska 82 Cervelo Lifeforce Pro Cycling   00' 45"
21. Van Den Broek Irene 116 Aa-Drink Cycling  + 00' 48"
22. Martisova Julia 51 Gauss Rdz Ormu 2h 47' 30" + 00' 48"
23. Verbeke Grace 226 Lotto-Belisol Ladiesteam + 00' 48"
24. Graham Lorian 133 Vrienden Van Het Platteland   + 00' 48"
25. Samplonius Anne 121 Canada 2h 47' 36" + 00' 54"
26. Lutz Eva 33 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung  + 00' 57"
27. Luperini Fabiana 71 Menikini - Selle Italia 2h 47' 40" + 00' 58"
28. Tuslaite Daiva 213 Lituanie 2h 47' 40" + 00' 58"
29. Van Rie An 135 Vrienden Van Het Platteland  + 00' 58"
30. Cantele Noemi 152 Bigla Cycling Team 2h 47' 44" + 01' 02"
31. Laws Sharon 14 Grande Bretagne 2h 47' 44" + 01' 02"
32. Wood Oenone 26 Team High Road Women + 01' 08"
33. Worrack Trixi 36 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung  + 01' 11"
34. Armstrong Kristin 81 Cervelo Lifeforce Pro Cycling   + 01' 14"
35. Valen De Vries Anita 165 Team Flexpoint 2h 48' 07" + 01' 25"
36. Egyed Nikki 137 Vrienden Van Het Platteland  + 01' 25"
37. Carrigan Sara 222 Lotto-Belisol Ladiesteam   + 01' 26"
38. Kupfernagel Hanka 91 Allemagne 2h 48' 18" + 01' 36"
39. Brzezna Paulina 111 Aa-Drink Cycling + 01' 40"
40. Melchers-Van Poppel Mirjam 161 Team Flexpoint   + 01' 41"
41. Thorburn Christine 46 Etats-Unis 2h 48' 27" + 01' 45"
42. Bosman Andrea 2 Team Dsb Bank 2h 48' 30" + 01' 48"
43. Graus Andrea 153 Bigla Cycling Team 2h 48' 30" + 01' 48"
44. Parietti Silvia 54 Gauss Rdz Ormu 2h 48' 31" + 01' 49"
45. Ziliute Diana 215 Lituanie 2h 48' 32" + 01' 50"
46. Bronzini Giorgia 243 Italie 2h 48' 35" + 01' 53"
47. Hohl Jennifer 154 Bigla Cycling Team 2h 48' 35" + 01' 53"
48. Kelley Seehafer Kori 74 Menikini - Selle Italia  01' 53"
49. Knoepfle Bianca 163 Team Flexpoint 2h 48' 35" + 01' 53"
50. Gunnewijk Loes 162 Team Flexpoint 2h 48' 38" + 01' 56"
51. Wild Kirsten 119 Aa-Drink Cycling Team 2h 48' 38" + 01' 56"
52. Anderson Kimberly 22 Team High Road   + 01' 56"
53. De Vocht Liesbeth 132 Vrienden Van Het Platteland + 01' 56"
54. Sels Loes 234 Topsport Vlaanderen Thompson Ladies  " + 02' 02"
55. Beltman Chantal 23 Team High Road Women 2h 48' 50" + 02' 08"
56. Keller Luise 24 Team High Road Women 2h 49' 09" + 02' 27"
57. Zabirova Zulfia 156 Bigla Cycling Team 2h 49' 20" + 02' 38"
58. Häusler Claudia 32 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung  + 03' 32"
59. Carroll Katharine 42 Etats-Unis 2h 50' 15" + 03' 33"
60. Liebig Tina 3 Team Dsb Bank 2h 50' 16" + 03' 34"
61. Kozonchuk Oxana 75 Menikini - Selle Italia + 03' 36"
62. Villumsen Serup Linda 25 Team High Road  + 03' 38"
63. Vilunaite Erika 214 Lituanie 2h 50' 20" + 03' 38"
64. Hobson Leigh 123 Canada 2h 50' 20" + 03' 38"
65. Willock Erinne 125 Canada 2h 50' 24" + 03' 42"
66. Vila Josana Andreu Marta 206 Espagne 2h 50' 31" + 03' 49"
67. Greer Felicia 122 Canada 2h 50' 35" + 03' 53"
68. Delfosse Catherine 224 Lotto-Belisol Ladiesteam + 03' 56"
69. Van Paassen Sanne 176 Pays Bas 2h 50' 40" + 03' 58"
70. Leleivyte Rasa 211 Lituanie 2h 50' 42" + 04' 00"
71. Creux Sophie 144 France 2h 50' 42" + 04' 00"
72. Thürig Karin 86 Cervelo Lifeforce Pro Cycling  " + 04' 00"
73. Van Veen Suzanne 166 Team Flexpoint 2h 50' 42" + 04' 00"
74. Werner Laure 118 Aa-Drink Cycling Team 2h 50' 50" + 04' 08"
75. Salvetat Maryline 141 France 2h 50' 57" + 04' 15"
76. Jaunatre Marina 191 Vienne Futuroscope 2h 51' 03" + 04' 21"
77. Van Essen Sharon 8 Team Dsb Bank 2h 53' 55" + 07' 13"
78. Vzesniauskaite Modesta 35 Equipe Nürnberger  + 08' 10"

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