Tour de l'Aude 2010
Stage 6 - Teutenberg makes it win 20 in Stage 6
CASTELNAUDARY -100 km
Ina-Yoko Teutenberg took her 20th stage victory at the Tour de l'Aude in France with another aggressive performance. Teutenberg is one of the most feared sprinters in women's cycling, but just like on stage three, she opted to join the breakaway that decided the stage and then won the sprint, beating Julia Martisova and Annemiek Van Vleuten. The main peloton finished 1:28 behind.
Because of the favourable wind, the beginning of stage was very fast. At 6 km at St-Papoul, Brooke Miller (USA) consolidated her lead in the sprint competition taking the first of the sprints. An attack from The km 19, three Dutchwomen, Marianne Vos (Netherland Bloiet), Adrie Visser (HTC Columbia) and Martine Bras (Gauss RDZ) used the benefit of the wind to surprise their adversaries. Emma Johansson (Red Sun) realised quickly and joined the group.
They gained a maximum advantage of 18 seconds before the Cervélo Test Team moved to the front to help with the chase.
This increase in pace split the group and a chase group of 23 riders formed. It all came back together as the leader were caught and those who had lost touch managed to claw their way back to the group after 25km.
As it came back together Teutenberg, Regina Bruins (Cervelo Test Team) and Julia Martisova (Gauss RDZ) launched an attack. Annemiek van Vleuten, who was 5th on GC and a little frustrated at the decision not to award her and her team mate with the win in stage 5, chased and managed to join the three leaders.
Angela Hennig (Noris) and Miller tried to join the quartet, but are they can not bridge the gap and they are caught by the peloton with the 44 km of racing completed.
In Montreal d' Aude the leaders had a 2 minute 30 second lead. With 33km of racing left the peloton controlled by Cervelo managed to bring the gap down to 1 minute 23 seconds.
As the race moved along the coast of Fangeaux a fast decent allowed Teutenberg to try a lone attack. She managed to get clear for 4km but is caught again at the top of côte Puy de Faucher at 17km to go.
The quartet approached the last 10 kilometers with an advance of 2 minutes 10 seconds. The sprint on this stage was familiar to Teutenberg. The road into la République with Castelnaudary, Teutenberg won in 2006.
Teutenberg tried to attack again at the last sprint with Martisova but van Vleuten and Bruins closed the gap. The group, came back together and Teutenberg was a clear winner in the sprint.
In the chasing bunch Vos (who is the leader in the Points competition and the Young riders) crossed the line 1 minute 28 seconds behind..
Annemiek van Vleuten moved up to 2nd place on GC 2 minute 3seconds behind Emma Pooley.
Ronnie Lauke HTC-Columbia Sports Director was overjoyed by the victory of Teutenberg, especially given it was her 20th victory at the Tour de l'Aude and her 13th victory of the 2010 season. "It was a great victory," said Lauke. "Ina just loves to race. She could have waited for the bunch sprint and probably still have won but she went away with three other riders after just 30km and then beat them in the sprint. She attacked alone at one point and was caught, but still won. She's amazing and an example for everyone else on the team."
There are three stages remaining in the Tour d l'Aude. Friday's stage from Limoux to Roquefeuil is very hilly but Lauke predicted that Teutenberg could win the other two stages at the weekend. "She's so strong and so hungry for success that she could win them. She could go in the break again or wait for the sprint. We have both options, which is great to have."
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