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Giro Donne, 2009


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Stage 3- Mara Abbott climbs Monte Serra to victory for Columbia HTC, Pooley in Pink

Calcinaia - Prato A Calci/Monte Serra 106.4km 


Race Writeup

Mara Abbott (Team Columbia HTC) climbed to victory on the third stage of the Giro Donne, just ahead of Emma Pooley and Claudia Hausler (Cervelo Test Team).  Abbot broke clear of lead group with Pooley and Hausler, she outsprinted Pooley at the end of the tough 106 km stage. The stage started in Calcinaia and finished with a double ascent of the gruelling Monte Serra climb.

Everyone expected the ridel of the Monte Serra mountain to be the decisive point in the race and it did not disappoint the crowds. Abbott (Team Columbia HTC) reaching the finish line alone having attacked Pooley in the final 800km of the race. The chasing bunch was led by Abbott's team make Judith Arndt ahead of Svetlana Boubnenkova (Fennix), then a gradual procession of riders. 

The break in the race came on the first ascent of Monte Serra, with  70 km to go. The steep climb ensured that the best climbers would make it into the lead group of 15. The group included, Fabiana Luperini (Ghezzi Selle Italy), Häusler (Cervelo Test Team), Carla Ryan (Cervelo Test Team), Svetlana Boubnenkova (Fennix), Judith Arndt (Team Columbia HTC), Amber Neben (Team Nurberger), Trixi Worrack ( Team Nurberger), Tatiana Guderzo (Michela Fanin Record Rox), Edita Pucinskaite (Gauss RDZ), Nicole Brändli (Bigla Cycling Team), Abbott (Team Columbia HTC), Linda Villumsen (Team Columbia HTC), Pooley (Cervelo Test Team), Tatiana Antoshina (Gauss RDZ), Susanne Ljungskog (Flexpoint).

The first assent and valuable mountain jersey points was won by Abbott ahead of Brändli and Pooley. Abbott crashed on the decent and had to be brought back to the group by team mate Villumsen. On the second assent Abbott had recovered from her crashed and attacked the group. Pooley was the only one who managed to go with her intially. Hausler bridged the gap and the three riders moved away from the chasing bunch controlled by the remaining Columbia HTC team. 


Maglia ROSA -Emma POOLEY


Maglia VERDE- Mara ABBOT

Maglia BIANCA -Elizabeth ARMISTEAD

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Post Race Comments

Mara Abbott (Team Columbia HTC), the 23-year-old American was delighted about the victory.  "It's really exciting. There are so many good riders on this team that even though I felt strong, it was difficult to imagine that I could actually be strong enough to go for the win," Abbott said afterwards.

Abbott initially broke away with Pooley on the first ascent of the 10-kilometre Monte serra, but came off her bike on the downhill section of the climb.  "The descent was very tricky because it had rained and I crashed, although fortunately I wasn't injured.  Linda [Villumsen, Columbia-HTC teammate] guided me back up to the front group before we reached the Monte sierra again.  Almost as soon as we did, I got away again with Pooley. Then when [Pooley's teammate Claudia] Haussler got across, I attacked and managed to drop her, which left me and Pooley as stage leaders. Pooley did most of the work, but I couldn't collaborate because I wanted to defend [teammate] Judith Arndt's position on GC.  Finally at the summit, I attacked about 800 metres from the top and went for the win."

Now second overall, Abbott was cautiously optimistic about Columbia-HTC's chances of winning, either with her or another rider.  "There are some very tough stages coming up, but Judith [Arndt] is still high up on the overall so we've got a lot of options, not just me. But in any case, I'm very pleased about things have worked out today. It was cool!"

Emma Pooley (Cervelo Test Team) was very happy to be wearing the pink jersey. "Mara Abbott and I have done a great job since the first ascent, unfortunately she crashed on the decent. It was a little wet and we were decending very fast. shooting. It was a gradula depreciation of the bunch and slowly we managed to reduce the group and we deservedly came together. It was right that she [abbott] won,. I was interested in the ranking," said Pooley.

Pooley was asked if she thought she could defend the jersey for the rest of the tour?,"Not only me, we have it now for Cervelo and we have so many girls still in good position to win the Giro. I am sorry for Kristin Armstrong, who had fallen and lost many minutes. We stayed solid and worked hard all day turn it into reality. It was: certainly hard, but I have already forgot the fatigue and stress of weather. For me it was a beautiful stage," added Pooley

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Results - Top 10 - click here to see full result

Position Name Team Time Gap
1 ABBOTT MARA Team Columbia Highroad Woman 2:55'32 
2 POOLEY EMMA Cervelo Test Team 2:55'32 
3 HAUSLER CLAUDIA Cervelo Test Team 2:56'08  36 
4 ARNDT JUDITH Team Columbia Highroad Woman 2:56'56  1'24 
5 BUBNENKOVA SVETLANA Fenixs Edilsavino 2:56'56  1'24 
6 RYAN CARLA Cervelo Test Team 2:57'04  1'32 
7 PUCINSKAITE EDITA Gauss Rdz Ormu Colnago 2:57'32  2'00 
8 NEBEN AMBER Equipe Nurnberger Versicherung 2:57'37  2'05 
9 BRANDLI NICOLE Bigla Cycling Team 2:58'19  2'47 
10 LUPERINI FABIANA Selle Italia Ghezzi 2:58'19  2'47 


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General Classification Top 10 - click here to see full GC

Position Name Team Time Gap
1 POOLEY EMMA Cervelo Test Team 6:06'15 
2 ABBOTT MARA Team Columbia Highroad Woman 6:07'22  1'07 
3 HAUSLER CLAUDIA Cervelo Test Team 6:07'33  1'18 
4 ARNDT JUDITH Team Columbia Highroad Woman 6:07'49  1'34 
5 NEBEN AMBER Equipe Nurnberger Versicherung 6:07'55  1'40 
6 BUBNENKOVA SVETLANA Fenixs Edilsavino 6:08'00  1'45 
7 PUCINSKAITE EDITA Gauss Rdz Ormu Colnago 6:08'37  2'22 
8 RYAN CARLA Cervelo Test Team 6:09'19  3'04 
9 BRANDLI NICOLE Bigla Cycling Team 6:09'49  3'34 
10 LUPERINI FABIANA Selle Italia Ghezzi 6:10'27  4'12 


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Photos   Click on any image to enlarge >>

To come

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