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Stage 3 - Cantele wins tough stage to take lead overall

Pontedera - Voltera, 137.6km

 

Race Writeup

Noemi Cantele (HTC-Columbia) won the third stage of the Giro di Toscana into the hilltop town of Volterra. Cantele proved to be the better climber ahead of Russian champion Tatiana Antoshina (Team Valdarno) on the steep cobbled slopes to the finish line, with Cantele’s HTC-Columbia teammates Evelyn Stevens and Judith Arndt crossing the line in third and fourth places.

After 45km a group of fifteen riders escaped the peloton, including Cantele, Italian champion Monia Baccaille (Team Valdarno), 2007 World champion Marta Bastianelli (Fenixs-Petrogadgets), Sigrid Corneo (Top Girls-Fassa Bortolo-Ghezzi) and Regina Bruins and Kirsten Wild (Cervélo TestTeam). 

The chasing peloton were content to let the group go, at 65km their lead was almost 2 minutes. With the overall lead sitting with HTC Columbia's Ina-Yoko Teutenberg, the tea were content to allow Cantele, who started the day just 6 seconds behind Teutenberg on GC, Cantele was already the race leader on the road.

On the climb to Lajatico after 84km an acceleration from Corneo pulled Baccaille and Cantele clear, but they were soon rejoined by the rest of the group.

On the climb to the finish line in Volterra for the first time, with less than 30km to go Cantele, Baccaille and Bruins got clear of the rest to start the finishing circuit. The remaining breakaway was caught by the chasing peloton.

With 10km to go, on the base of the final climb to the finish, Baccaille attacked but was caught with 7km to go; suddenly Stevens attacked from the peloton behind, catching up with the three leaders.

With 3km to go Cantele and Stevens dropped the other two and the HTC-Columbia riders rode on up the steep hill to the centre of the mediaeval town. As they approached the finish Cantele left Stevens behind as Antoshina escaped from a chase group and made it across. The Russian managed to catch and pass the American, but couldn’t make it up to the Italian.

Cantele took the pink jersey 

 

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Post Race Comments

Evelyn Stevens (HTC Columbia) was very happy with her own and her team's performance, "This has to be one of the highlights of my year," said Stevens afterwards. "The whole team did an exceptional job and it's turned into an awesome result. Noemi was away in a break, then I caught that group on the final climb of Volterra and we rode up together,” she continued. “She got the win but it was a tremendous day for everybody. You never know if we'll be able to take this lead all the way to the finish, but we've proven that we have a strong team here, for sure."

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Results - Top 10 - click here to see full result

Position Name Team Time/Gap
1 Noemi Cantele   HTC Columbia Women 3:51:26
2 Tatiana Antoshina   Team Valdarno 0:00:04
3 Evelyn Stevens   HTC Columbia Women 0:00:08
4 Judith Arndt   HTC Columbia Women "
5 Tatiana Guderzo   Team Valdarno 0:00:26
6 Edita Pucinskaite   Gauss RDZ Ormu "
7 Natalia Boyarskaya   Fenixs - Petrogradets 0:00:30
8 Emma Johansson   Sweden 0:00:32
9 Annemiek Van Vleuten   Nederland Bloeit 0:00:59
10 Grete Treier   S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox 0:01:14

 

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General Classification Top 10 - click here to see full result

Position Name  Team Time/Gap
1 Noemi Cantele   HTC Columbia Women 7:10:32
2 Evelyn Stevens   HTC Columbia Women 0:00:14
3 Judith Arndt   HTC Columbia Women 0:00:18
4 Tatiana Antoshina   Team Valdarno 0:00:31
5 Tatiana Guderzo   Team Valdarno 0:00:59
6 Edita Pucinskaite   Gauss RDZ Ormu 0:01:00
7 Emma Johansson   Sweden 0:01:11
8 Annemiek Van Vleuten   Nederland Bloeit 0:01:30
9 Natalia Boyarskaya   Fenixs - Petrogradets 0:01:31
10 Charlotte Becker   Cervelo TestTeam 0:01:50

 

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