Shelley Evans repeats in New Zealand stage 2
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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Shelley Evans repeats in New Zealand stage 2

by Ben Atkins at 8:46 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results

Team USA sprinter Shelley Evans repeated her first day victory to take stage 2 of the Tour of New Zealand from Masterton to Palmerston North. The Peanut Butter & Co TWENTY12 rider was once again the fastest sprinter, taking the win in a photo finish ahead of Liu Xin and Wong Wan Yiu (both Giant Pro Cycling Team-China).

The 114km stage started without Catherine Cheatley of the New Zealand national team, who rides for Colavita-Baci in the US. An early break of four dominated the first two thirds of the stage before being caught and passed by a surge in pace from New Zealand champion Rushlee Buchanan (New Zealand national team) as the peloton approached the final climb.

Pace setting on the front by the US team in the defence of Evans’ race lead saw Buchanan – who will also ride for Colavita-Baci after transferring from Team Tibco in the off-season – reeled in before she managed to get much of a gap. Mountains leader Ruth Corset (Nashua) attacked on the climb, but her second place on the overall classification meant that she was too dangerous to be allowed to escape. The Australian champion was marked by Evans’ US teammate Amber Neben.

The technical descent was wet from the earlier rain and saw a number of riders come down, including defending champion Amber Halliday (Nashua) who was forced to abandon. A late attack from Kaytee Boyd (New Zealand national team) on the final climb was neutralised by the US team and a group of 30 riders approached the final sprint together.

Despite the presence of most of both the New Zealand and Giant Pro Cycling-China teams, Evans managed to win a very close sprint. Time bonuses on the line extend the 29-year-old sprinter’s lead to 14 seconds over Corset, with Liu moving up to third.

Tomorrow’s stage 3 will be a rolling 87km circuit via Ashurst, starting and finishing in Palmertson North.

Result stage 2
1. Shelley Evans (USA)
2. Liu Xin (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China
3. Wong Wan Yiu (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China
4. Kaytee Boyd (NZl) New Zealand National Team
5. Courteney Lowe (NZl) New Zealand National Team
6. Linda Villumsen (NZl) New Zealand National Team
7. Meng Lang (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China
8. Gao Min (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China
9. Luo Xiaoling (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China
10. Masami Morita (Jpn) Japanese national team

Standings after stage 2
1. Shelley Evans (USA) USA National Team
2. Ruth Corset (Aus) Nashua Ladies Pro Cycling Team @ 14s
3. Liu Xin (Chn) Giant Pro Cycling Team-China @ 14s


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