UCI Road World Cup 2011
Plouay, Final Round 9 -
GP de Plouay, France, 114.6km
Annemiek van Vleuten (Nederland Bloeit) completed a dream year for her and her team winning the final World Cup and securing herself as World Cup leader after the final round in Plouay, France.
Emma Pooley (Garmin-Cervelo) who had won this event twice 2009, 2010, opened with an attack which caused a break on the fourth of six laps of a 19.1 km circuit. Joining Pooley were World Cup leader, Annemiek van Vleuten (Nederland -Bloeit), Evelyn Stevens (HTC HighRoad), Chantal Blaak (AA Drink) and Erinne Willock (Tibco). The four worked well together and quickly gained a gap of over one minute 40 seconds. As the race progressed the peloton behind was slowly reducing in size which left a main chase group if 11 riders, with the rest of the peloton three minutes in back.
On the fifth lap, Pooley attacked again and managed to get away, solo. She built a lead of around a minute. At the same time that she took on the leaders, Marianne Vos (Nederland Bloeit) accelerated fiercely from the chase group and began to bridge across the gap of over one minute to the front of the race. She needed less than ten kilometres to get to the group behind Pooley and when she did, she kept going. The group went with her, which meant that Pooley’s advantage began to fall. For the closing kilometres, the Briton hung on at 15 seconds, but Vos persisted and Pooley was caught with three kilometres to go. Van Vleuten was attentive for a counterattack, which she was anticipating. Sure enough, Evelyn Stevens accelerated, but got nowhere alone, van Vleuten went with her and the pair entered the final kilometre together.
The World Cup leader van Vleuten obviously had the strongest legs and she managed to open a gap on the American in the finishing straight. The Dutchwoman celebrated yet another World Cup win in 2011 and became World Cup Champion for the first time with 362 points. Vos was second on 315 points and Emma Johansson (Hitec Products) third with 223 points after finishing in the peloton.
The day was rounded off nicely for Nederland Bloeit, the team also won the World Cup classification for teams.
Annemiek Van Vleuten (Nederland Bloeit) was very happy with her double victory. Asked if it had been planned, “No, it was not the plan that I would win today, that’s a secret, what our plan was, but no, not today”, said van Vleuten.
When Marianne Vos bridge across it helped van Vleuten, “I was thinking ‘ah, I’m alone’, so when she came, it was fun to be together, she did a great job today“ van Vleuten smiled, “She [Vos] was strong chasing Pooley and then I was expecting an attack in the final kilometres and [Evelyn] Stevens attacked and I was on her wheel and I felt good. I was just going to enjoy the day, but I got 75 points too.”
Photos Click on any image to enlarge >>[2011_ChangedCopy/Gallery2011/WorldCupRoad/09_Plouay/PhotoIndex.html]
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