Exergy Tour: Theresa Cliff-Ryan outsprints the field after aggressive stage one
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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Exergy Tour: Theresa Cliff-Ryan outsprints the field after aggressive stage one

by Ben Atkins at 6:02 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
Last kilometre crash takes out Giorgia Bronzini; Specialized-lululemon dominates rainy stage

theresa cliff-ryan

Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Exergy-TWENTY12) put smiles back on the faces of the home team, following her captain’s crashing out of the previous day’s prologue, with a sprint victory on stage one of the Exergy Tour in Nampa. The 33-year-old American was fastest at the end of a wet and windy 120km stage around the Idaho countryside, and beat German champion Ina Teutenberg (Specializd-lululemon) and Rochelle Gilmore (Faren-Honda) to the line.

The jostling for position on the approach to the sprint saw a number of riders come down however; the most seriously affected was World champion Giorgia Brozini (Diadora-Pasta Zara), who left the scene by ambulance after having heavy strapping applied to her wrist. The 28-year-old - who was making a return to racing after dislocating her shoulder in a crash a month previously - reported later, via Twitter, that she had not suffered any broken bones however.

Under the threat of heavy rain and wind the peloton stayed together for long enough for Teutenberg to take the first intermediate sprint, but Beth Newell (NOW and Novartis for MS) attacked alone as the first climb of Pump Road approached. She managed to keep the peloton at bay for some time, but was caught shortly before the top, as a nine-rider group broke free.

In the group were: Trixi Worrack (Specialized-lululemon), Jackie Crowell and Tayler Wiles (Exergy-TWENTY12), Lauren Hall (Tibco-To The Top), Leah Kirchmann (Optum Pro Cycling),, Claudia Häusler (Orica-GreenEdge), Jenni Hohl (Faren-Honda), Maaike Polspoel (Topsport Vlaanderen-Ridley 2012) and Karol-Ann Canuel (Canada). They managed to open up a lead of 2’40” in the middle of the race, before Specialized-lululemon began to close it down.

The gap was just 45 seconds as they hit the climb for the second time, as a number of riders, including Evie Stevens and Amber Neben (both Specialized-lululemon), Nicole Cooke and Fabiana Luperini (Faren-Honda) and race leader Tara Whitten (Tibco-To The Top).

Although the group now numbered 25 riders, with too many big names there was no real cohesion and it was brought back by the rest of the peloton with around 20km to go.

There were solo attempts to escape from Optum Pro Cycling riders Lex Albrecht and Jade Wilcoxson, but neither was able to get more than a few metres clear before being pulled back.

The peloton entered the final kilometres all together, seemingly heading for a simple sprint on the wide finishing straight, but a sudden touch of wheels brought down a number of riders, including Bronzini.

Specialized-lululemon led out Teutenberg, but Exergy-TWENTY12 was there with Cliff-Ryan, and the American took a clear victory ahead of the German champion. Teutenberg did have the consolation of taking the yellow jersey however, as time bonuses lifted her above Whitten in the general classification.

Result stage 1
1. Theresa Cliff-Ryan (USA) Exergy-TWENTY12
2. Ina Teutenberg (Ger) Specialized-lululemon
3. Rochelle Gilmore (Aus) Faren-Honda
4. Leah Kirchmann (Can) Optum Pro Cycling
5. Alison Powers (USA) Now and Novartis for MS
6. Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
7. Chaira Nadalutti (Ita) Faren-Honda
8. Kelly Druyts (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Ridley 2012
9. Carmen Small (USA) Optum Pro Cycling
10. Jade Wilcoxson (USA) Optum Pro Cycling

Standings after stage 1
1. Ina Teutenberg (Ger) Specialized-lululemon
2. Tara Whitten (Can) Team Tibco-To The Top @ 3s
3. Gillian Carleton (Can) Canadian National Team
4. Clara Hughes (Can) Specialized-lululemon @ 4s
5. Evelyn Stevens (USA) Specialized-lululemon @ 6s
6. Alison Powers (USA) NOW and Novartis for MS
7. Shara Gillow (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge @ 7s
8. Jade Wilcoxson (USA) Optum Pro Cycling Women @ 9s
9. Trixi Worrack (Ger) Specialized-lululemon
10. Amber Neben (USA) Specialized-lululemon @ 10s

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