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Stage 1

Portarlington, Individual time trial, 8km


Race Writeup

A windy morning provided a test for the riders in the first major elite race of the year. Although it was windy, the stage remained dry and the temperatures were not excessive.  'Warm' as opposed to 'hot' is something which the recently arrived Europeans and Americans will have appreciated, given that even California is in its winter at the moment. 

With the seeded riders starting towards the end of the list, early leaders were not expected to retain their position. True to form, the final ten minutes of the time trial provided the excitement, with the seeded riders racing for the victory. 

A battle was expected between Nicole Cooke and Oenone Wood, but the podium positions drew some puzzled expressions on the faces of officials and spectators. The winner was the American team, Colavita's, Dotsie Bausch, who conceded that although her victory may be surprising, she has been working throughout the Northern winter with a specialist time trial coach. The Kentuckian did not have to wait long after finishing for her fast time to be confirmed as the fastest. With only five riders starting after her, she just about had time to roll back to the finishing area to learn that she would take the race Leader's Jersey into Stage 2.

Second place went to another relative unknown who also started late in the field, Larrisa Kleinmann is riding for the German National team. A look at her pedigree suggests that the 8km test was her forte; she rides the pursuit on the track. 

Nicole Cooke, who, as 2006 World number 1 ranked rider was wearing number 1 in the Tour, managed third in the time trial. She put herself into a good position for the rest of the Tour. Cookes' position, however was not that strong, there were only 33 seconds separating the top ten after the time trial.


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Post Race Comments

Dotsie Bausch  "I just trained really, really hard this winter with a specific time trial coach." she admitted, not as surprised as some at her win. "I get the leader's jersey for the next stage. I'm not a criterium expert though, we (Colavita) have an excellent criterium rider, Tina Pic." (Pic has been 4 times USA National criterium Champion in the past 5 years)

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Results - Top 3 

1 Dotsie Bausch (COL)  11'33"

2 Larrissa Kleinmann (GER) 11'38"

3 Nicole Cooke (RLT) 11'40"


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General Classification Top 3

1 Dotsie Bausch (COL)  11'33"

2 Larrissa Kleinmann (GER) 11'38"

3 Nicole Cooke (RLT) 11'40"


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Photos   Click on any image to enlarge >>

On the way.............

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