Emakumeen Euskal Bira: Linda Villumsen wins stage three time trial
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Saturday, June 09, 2012

Emakumeen Euskal Bira: Linda Villumsen wins stage three time trial

by Ben Atkins at 2:04 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
Emma Pooley clings onto overall lead in Basque stage race

linda villumsenLinda Villumsen (Orica-GreenEdge) won the third stage time trial of the Emakumeen Euskal Bira, in Orduña, north west Spain. The Danish-born New Zealander completed the undulating 13.4km course in a time of 18’21” to beat teammate, and World time trial champion Judith Arndt by three seconds.

Villumsen and Arndt’s former teammate Ellen van Dijk (Specialized-lululemon) teammate finished third, six seconds down, while race leader Emma Pooley (AA Drink-Leontien.nl) lost just ten seconds, to take fourth place, and hold on to her yellow jersey by a single second over Arndt.

"It's difficult to make a plan for a time trial," said Villumsen, on the subject of moderating her efforts on the undulating course. "You just go as fast as you can. I don't think about how other people will ride the course. It makes no difference. It only matters how I ride. I go as fast I can from start to finish."

Arndt, who beat Villumsen into second place in Copenhagen, Denmark, last year, agreed with her teammate's analysis.

“In a time trial, you focus only on yourself,” the German concurred. “You keep pressure and focus the entire time, and you ride as fast as you can. It's about constantly putting pressure on the pedals. For instance, if there's a climb, I keep going as hard after the climb as I went on the climb. I don't get to the top and think 'Oh thank God. I'm on the top and now I can rest.'

“There is no rest. That's the key.”

2011 junior World time trial champion Jessica Allen (Australia) was the first rider to start, and her time of 20’48” was good enough to hold the lead until former Italian time trial champion, and perennial medallist, Silvia Valsecchi (Be Pink) posted 19’02” a few minutes later, catching Dutch rider Esra Tromp (Skil-Argos) in the process.


Valsecchi’s time was to stand for more than three-quarters of an hour, until stage one winner Ina Teutenberg (Specialized-lululemon) went 13 seconds faster, but the German champion was not on top for long, as Villumsen followed her just seven minutes later to set what was to be the best time.

Ten minutes later van Dijk went just six seconds slower than the Orica-GreenEdge rider, and Arndt went closer still just a few minutes after that. Second last to start Annemiek van Vleuten (Rabobank) conceded 16 seconds to the New Zealander, while race leader Pooley lost ten.

The ten second loss of Pooley equated to one of seven to Arndt, who began the day just eight in arrears. The two riders were separated by just one second going into the final stage, with Orica-GreenEdge intending to make up that slim deficit.

“We'll have a team meeting tonight and make our plan,” explained Villumsen. “We'll come up with something good, I'm sure. We are in a position to challenge for the overall now, and that has always been our goal.”

Result stage 3
1. Linda Villumsen (NZl) Orica-GreenEdge, 13.4km in 18’21”
2. Judith Arndt (Ger) Orica-GreenEdge @ 3s
3. Ellen van Dijk (Ned) Specialized-lululemon @ 6s
4. Emma Pooley (GBr) AA Drink-Leontien.nl @ 10s
5. Emma Johansson (Swe) Hitec Products-Mistral Home
6. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Stichting Rabo Women @ 18s
7. Shelley Olds (USA) AA Drink-Leontien.nl @ 21s
8. Ina Teutenberg (Ger) Specialized-lululemon @ 28s
9. Elizabeth Armitstead (GBr) AA Drink-Leontien.nl @ 36s
10. Silvia Valsecchi (Ita) Be Pink @ 41s

Standings after stage 3
1. Emma Pooley (GBr) AA Drink-Leontien.nl
2. Judith Arndt (Ger) Orica-GreenEdge @ 1s
3. Emma Johansson (Swe) Hitec Products-Mistral Home @ 8s
4. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Stichting Rabo Women @ 16s
5. Alena Amialyusik (Blr) Be Pink @ 40s
6. Sharon Laws (GBr) AA Drink-Leontien.nl
7. Claudia Häusler (Ger) Orica-GreenEdge @ 41s
8. Elizabeth Armitstead (GBr) AA Drink-Leontien.nl @ 54s
9. Lucinda Brand (Ned) AA Drink-Leontien.nl @ 56s
10. Ellen van Dijk (Ned) Specialized-lululemon @ 1’16”

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