The Anna Millward Diary 2001

Tour of the Gila

New Mexico, May 2-6, 2001

Stage 1 - time trial

Today we raced the first day of a five-day tour in Silver City, New Mexico. We are at the lovely elevation of 6000 feet—around about the height of Mt Kosciusko—so there's a lot of heavy breathing going on! The Saturn team has six riders here and two of them have been at altitude for a little while now, so they are our main hopes for this race. They are Lyne Bessette and Kim Bruckner. Suzanne Sonye, Kristy Scrymgeour, Ina Teutenberg and myself round out the team. We are competing against a field of around 100 women, with our main opposition coming from the Autotrader team and young Canadian rider Genevieve Jeanson.

Today we raced a 26 km time trial. It was quite a tough course with a gradual 6km climb to start with and several undulations following that. There was a stiff headwind on the way out and a roaring tailwind for the return journey.

Canadian sensation Genevieve Jeanson won the race, in a startling time of 38 minutes, 47 seconds. In second place, one minute behind was Lyne Bessette and Kim Bruckner was another 10 seconds back. I am pretty sure I finished in 4th place, 2 minutes behind the winner. The whole Saturn team rode well, I think all of us are among the top 20 riders so we are pretty content with our effort - although we would have preferred to have won the race!

Tomorrow will be an important day for the overall standings. We race around 110 kms, finishing with a steep climb.