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World Road Championships 2009

 

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Preview

Mendrisio, Switzerland 2009

 

Writeup

The Road World Championships will take place from 22nd to 27th September in Mendrisio (Switzerland), the main town in the southern-most region in Canton Ticino; it is one of the important road links leading from the St.Gothard pass towards Italy. Set between two mountains with wonderful views, Monte San Giorgio, on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2003, and Monte Generoso, Mendrisio is the seat of the Academy of Architecture and has an interesting historical centre. 

This isn't going to be a race for the pure sprinters. But the punchy, attacking riders will be anticipating making their move on a course that should be well matched to their abilities. Mendrisio, Switzerland is almost guaranteed to host an exciting, tactical race. 

Based on performances this year, there are possibly around a dozen riders who will make this race their own, Marianne Vos (Netherlands) has been consistent all year and having secured the World Cup leaders jersey this year. She has proved that she has what it takes to won this year on tough circuits. Judith Arndt (Germany) has spent much of the year injured and will be looking to finish the season on a positive note. Arndt's team mate Trixi Worrack will suit the course too, so there could be a German victory again. Emma Pooley and Nicole Cooke (Great Britain) have one of the strongest teams produced out of the UK for a while. It cannot be discounted that Cooke can do back to back wins in the road race 2009. The Italians have a strong team, any one of three riders could appear in the top 10, Fabiana Luperini, Naomi Cantele and Tatiana Guderzo (Italy) have been consistent all year and are strong all round competitors. The Swiss will hope that they can get a local winner, Nicole Brandli is the most consistent of the Swiss this year. If there were to be an Australian in the mix, a likely top 12 finisher could possibly be Tiffany Cromwell or given the hills on the circuit, Vikki Whitelaw. The Americans will want to feature in this and Amber Neben and Evelyn Stevens are riding well. An possible surprise outsider and not one to be discounted is Ina-Yoko Teutenberg. Teutenberg has had more victories than any rider this year. Mendrisio may be a little too steep for her. 

The programme is as follows:

Individual Time Trial
Wednesday 23 September 2009: Women, 26.8 km (2x13.4km circuit, 220m elevation) 14:00-17:15 *

Road Race
Saturday 26 September 2009: Women, 124.2 km (9x13.8km circuit, 124.2 km, 2,205 m elevation) 09:00-12:30

The women do not have the greatest start times allocated to them, doing nothing to help with media coverage and spectator support for them. Prize money for these championships will not be equal either. The women receive half the amount of reward that the men get in the road race. The TT is a little better but still only 80% of what the men achieve.

Like Madrid, the women will need to be up at 6am on the day of their road race in order to eat and be prepared to start racing at 9am. This will mean warming up in the dark and in much cooler temperatures than their elite male counterparts. This is the only opportunity the women get to show the world what they can do. Unlike the U23 men who, if they progress to senior ranks will have much greater exposure for longer in their careers as they progress. Elite Women's are already at the top of their sport and their races should have this year and should always be given the prime opportunity spot at the World championships, otherwise it just continues the inequality in this sport.

Each National Federation shall be entitled to enter 12 competitors of whom 6 to ride in the road race and a maximum of two starters in the individual time trial. 

For the elite women, the incumbent Continental Champions and World Champions will be granted additional places for the event in which they won their title, for 2009 this means the following outgoing Continental Champions are potential starters in addition to the their nominations from their countries. 

CC Europe BLAAK Chantal NED

CC America NUMAINVILLE Joelle CAN

CC Asia TANG Kerong CHN

CC Africa SLINGERLAND Cashandra RSA

CC Oceania RHODES Alexis AUS

CC Europe VAN DIJK Ellen NED

CC America GRASSI HERRERA Giuseppina MEX

CC Africa SLINGERLAND Cashandra RSA

CC Oceania O'DONNELL Bridie AUS

The event also allows the outgoing World Champions to be entered. For the time trial, this will be Amber Neben (USA) and the road race, Nicole Cooke (GBR)

A number of National teams have announced long list or actual final list for the championships. We will update this as we get the latest information.

Australia: The team is a mixture of youth and experience and includes some real workers. Emma Mackie (RR) has been riding in Europe for a number of years and gets her first Australian RR start. Ruth Corset is a solid climber and should feature well in the road race. Tiffany Cromwell is talented and determined and like Corset should feature well on the climbs. Rochelle Gilmore the most experienced member of the team and has had a great season, she is unlikely to feature at the finish, as she is a strong sprinter but she may not keep up with the climbers on the way to the finale. Bridie O'Donnell is tall and powerful but is unlikely to podium in the TT. Oceania Time Trial Champion Alexis Rhodes will be a strong member of the road race team and will ride the TT. She is strong but unlikely to reach top 3. The final member of the team is the Oceania Road Race Champion Vicki Whitelaw (RR/TT)

Austria: Christiane Soeder is back to try to gain the gold in both the TT and the road race. After last year in Varese, Soeder won the silver medal. After a great season with very good performance in TT events Mendrisio should suit Soeder. in the road team Soeder is joined by former state champion Daniela Pintarelli. the rest of the team is to be confirmed.

Canada: The team is a mix of youth and experience, Tara Whitten, Erinne Willock and Julie Beveridge have great experience, Alison Testroete,Joelle Numainville and Heather Logan are less well known.

Czech Repubilic: Small team for road and TT, Tereza Hurikova and Martina Ruzickova.

Great Britain: The long list, includes defending World Champion Nicole Cooke, she heads the strongest line up for many a years that includes triple World Championship track medallist Lizzie Armitstead, Olympic Silver medallist (TT) Emma Pooley and Nikki Harris along with Olympic Pursuit Champion Rebecca Romero for the Time Trial. The announced list is as follows, Lizzie Armitstead, Katie Colclough, Nicole Cooke, Catherine Hare, Nikki Harris, Sharon Laws, Lucy Martin, Emma Pooley, Emma Silversides. In the Time Trial, Wendy Houvenaghel, Emma Pooley and Rebecca Romero.

Great Britain Team confirmed on 21 September 2009 : Road Race : Lizzie Armitstead, Katie Colclough, Nicole Cooke, Nikki Harris, Sharon Laws, Lucy Martin, Emma Pooley   Time Trial : Wendy Houvenaghel, Emma Pooley

Italy: The provisional line up is Monia Baccaille, Elena Berlato, Giorgia Bronzini, Noemi Cantele , Valentina Carretta, Tatiana Guderzo, Fabiana Luperini and Selle Italia Ghezzi team mate Luisa Tamanini. The TT provisional start list is Cantele and Guderzo.

New Zealand: The women’s team will be led by Catherine Cheatley, who has enjoyed an excellent season for her Colavita Sutter Home team. Auckland’s Kaytee Boyd, a former mountain biker and track rider, and Wellington’s Rachel Mercer will join Cheatley, as Beijing Olympian Jo Kiesanowski skips the event to focus on track preparation

USA :The American team is strong and should not be dismissed. They tasted a world title after Amber Neben win in 2008 an Olympic glory with Kristin Armstrong. Both Neben and Armstrong will ride both the Time Trial and Road Race. Having tasted glory this year with her Pro team Team Columbia HTC, Kimberly Anderson with be a strong member of this team for the road race. Anderson is joined by Columbia HTC team mates, Mara Abbott (outgoing) and Evelyn Stevens (new 2010) along with Meredith Miller. Jessica Phillips will start the Time Trial, she is USA National Champion.

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