Annemiek van Vleuten heads Rabobank one-two in Holland Hills Classic
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Friday, May 25, 2012

Annemiek van Vleuten heads Rabobank one-two in Holland Hills Classic

by Ben Atkins at 1:06 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
Fractured collarbone for Marianne Vos after being hit by race moto; still finishes second

Annemiek Van VleutenAnnemiek van Vleuten (Rabobank) won the Holland Hills Classic in Valkenburg, Netherlands, in a one-two with teammate Marianne Vos, as the World number one finished the race with a fractured collarbone. Vos had escaped with Sharon Laws (AA in the first 15km of the 95km race, which was based largely on this year’s World championships circuit. Van Vleuten bridged across in the closing kilometres however, and won the three-woman sprint, with Vos taking second ahead of Laws.

“I actually attacked for third place,” van Vleuten explained afterwards. “We were only going to ride when the gap up to the two of them seemed enough. But directeur sportif Jeroen Blijlevens told me in the final kilometres that I was very close behind them.

“When I caught them I didn’t actually discuss things with Marianne as time was too short,” she added. “Our fixed pattern is that I attack and that she would sprint if it stayf together. I did and I stayed away.”

Having escaped early on, Vos and Laws managed to build up a lead of up to a minute over the peloton but, as they were descending one of the numerous hills on the course, Vos came together with a race official and crashed.

“There was a moto in the bend and in an attempt to get out of the way, I went down,” Vos explained. “I have grazes on my shoulder and my arm and got some problems with my right arm, which I must get looked at.”

As it transpired though, Vos had actually fractured her right collarbone and, with just two months left until the Olympic Games, faces some time off the bike.

Despite the discomfort, Vos spent the next 25km chasing the lone British rider, and finally made contact as the finish approached. Meanwhile, van Vleuten attacked the peloton, and managed to bridge across the the two leaders with three kilometres to go. The World Cup winner then attacked immediately and, with Laws forced to chase, managed to stay away to win, with Vos coming around to take second.

Laws’ AA teammate Emma Pooley finished fourth, 15 seconds back, having also escaped the peloton late on; two more AA riders, Chantal Blaak and Lucinda Brand, finished 1’47” later, while Adrie Visser (Skil-Argos) led the peloton home after 2’22”.

Result Holland Hills Classic
1. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Stichting Rabo Women
2. Marianne Vos (Ned) Stichting Rabo Women
3. Sharon Laws (GBr) AA
4. Emma Pooley (GBr) AA @ 15s
5. Chantal Blaak (Ned) AA @ 1’47”
6. Lucinda Brand (Ned) AA
7. Adrie Visser (Ned) Skil-Argos @ 2’22”
8. Shelley Olds (USA) AA
9. Annelies Van Doorslaer (Bel) Kleo Ladies Team
10. Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra) Stichting Rabo Women


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