Route de France: Giorgia Bronzini goes three from three in another bunch sprint
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Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Route de France: Giorgia Bronzini goes three from three in another bunch sprint

by Ben Atkins at 5:57 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
Johansson still holds overall lead at race’s halfway point

giorgia bronziniGiorgia Bronzini (Wiggle Honda) sprinted to her tenth win of the 2013 season as she sprinted to her third straight victory in the Route de France, in stage three between Anet and Mamers. The The former two-time World champion was the fastest once again on the uphill finishing straight, crossing the line more than a bike length clear of race leader Emma Johansson (Orica-AIS) and British champion Lizzie Armitstead (Boels-Dolmans).

“I’m so happy. I’m proud of the girls, and the work that they did,” said Bronzini.

“Today was a quiet race until 25km to go,” she explained. “Into the final there was a little bit of a climb into the small lap, and someone attacked into the last two laps, and the rest of the group was chasing. In the last K I was with Linda Villumsen, and Linda pulled me into the sprint, and at 150 to go; the finish line was at the top of the climb, which is my perfect sprint

“So I jumped off the wheel of Linda - and of Emma Johansson [Orica-AIS] too, because she was next to Linda - and it was a good sprint.”

The 123.6km stage saw a lone attack from French rider Sandrine Bideau (Vienne-Futuroscope), who managed to get more than two and a half minutes clear before being pulled back just after the halfway point.

Orica-AIS then kept the pace high on the two laps of the 4.2km finishing circuit, to keep the few attempted attacks under control, but Wiggle Honda’s former two-time World champion was the fastest sprinter for the third straight day.

“I thought the final circuit was going to be flat with a lot of corners today,” said Johansson. “Surprise! – it turned out to be a lot of corners and a lot of steep, little hills. I thought it was going to be a good final for Mel [Hoskins] initially, but when I saw it, I thought it could be a good final for me instead. I gave it a real go to try to bring the stage win home today, but Bronzini was too fast.”

Despite missing out on the stage victory, race leader Johansson’s one second advantage over Villumsen remained intact, with Amy Pieters (Argos-Shimano) still third, two seconds back.

Result stage 3
1. Giorgia Bronzini (Ita) Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling
2. Emma Johansson (Swe) Orica-AIS
3. Elizabeth Armitstead (GBr) Boels-Dolmans
4. Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra) Rabobank-Liv/Giant
5. Pascale Jeuland (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope
6. Alena Amialyusik (Blr) Be Pink
7. Amy Pieters (Ned) Argos-Shimano
8. Roxane Knetemann (Ned) Rabobank-Liv/Giant
9. Valentina Scandolara (Ita) MCipollini-Giordana
10. Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) MCipollini-Giordana

Standings after stage 3
1. Emma Johansson (Swe) Orica-AIS
2. Linda Villumsen (NZl) Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling @ 1s
3. Amy Pieters (Ned) Argos-Shimano @ 2s
4. Evelyn Stevens (USA) United States National Team @ 5s
5. Roxane Knetemann (Ned) Rabobank-Liv/Giant @ 6s
6. Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) MCipollini-Giordana @ 8s
7. Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra) Rabobank-Liv/Giant @ 9s
8. Thalita de Jong (Ned) Rabobank-Liv/Giant
9. Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Orica-AIS
10. Iris Slappendel (Ned) Rabobank-Liv/Giant @ 13s

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