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British National Championships - CN

North Yorkshire, Great Britain, June 28-29, 2008

Main Page    Results     Next Day

Day 1 - June 28: Elite/U23 women's road race, 106 km

Unstoppable Cooke takes number nine

Nicole Cooke (Halfords Bikehut) has proved once again that she owns the red, white and blue jersey by taking the British National Championship for a record eighth consecutive time and a ninth time in all. She beat Emma Pooley (Specialized Designs for Women) in a two-up sprint at Duncombe Park, North Yorkshire today.

Cooke was the only rider from a breakaway of six strong enough to follow Pooley's last lap attack, and the pair rode together to finish more than three minutes clear of the rest of the group. In the finishing straight, Cooke's sprint was too powerful for Pooley and she took the victory by several lengths.

The breakaway formed in the race's early stages when an attack from Catherine Hare (Halfords Bikehut), chased by Pippa Handley (HWV De Tubanters), succeeded in opening a gap on the peloton. Pooley and Cooke quickly bridged the gap and were joined by Cooke and Hare's team-mates Jo Rowsell and Jess Allen, and 2007 silver medallist Rachel Heal (Tibco). Handley was subsequently dropped and forced to rejoin the peloton and the six riders successfully managed to build a commanding lead over the rest of the field.

In the final lap Pooley attempted to escape alone, but Cooke was able to follow her. The two of them managed to build a decisive lead over their companions, with Heal the only non-Halfords Bikehut rider in the chasing group. Cooke and Pooley confirmed that they are currently the strongest riders in the British women's peloton, but none of the climbs on the 21km circuit was long enough for Pooley to distance Cooke. The defending champion's superior sprint came to bear in the final stages and she won by several lengths.

Over three minutes behind the winning pair Rowson took the sprint for third, and the under-23 title, followed by Allen, Hare and Heal. Helen Wyman (Swift Racing) led the home remainder of the peloton – which had split into small groups – more than ten minutes later.


1 Nicole Cooke (Team Halfords Bikehut)
2 Emma Pooley (Team Specialized Designs For Women)
3 Joanna Rowsell (Team Halfords Bikehut)
4 Jessica Allen (Team Halfords Bikehut)
5 Catherine Hare (Team Halfords Bikehut)
6 Rachel Heal (Team Tibco)
7 Helen Wyman (Swift Racing)
8 Leanne Thompson (Lune RCC)
9 Rachel Osborn (Newport Shropshire CC)
10 Leda Cox (Americas Dairyland Team)
11 Charlotte Colclough
12 Julie Mann (Altura)
13 Emma Silversides (Lotto - Belisol)
14 Sarah Cramoysan (Team Swift )
15 Kara Chesworth (Dysynni Cycling Club)
16 Claire Thomas (Edinburgh RC)
17 Emma Trott (Team Halfords Bikehut)
18 Kelly Moore (GS Strada Afford)
19 Susannah Osborne (London Dynamo/Cyclefit)
20 Rebecca Curley (London Dynamo/Cyclefit)
21 Jeanette Caldicott (Team Luciano)
22 Sarah Byrne (GS Strada Afford)
23 Gabriella Day (Swift Racing)
24 Rebecca Rimmington (VC St Raphael)
25 Elizabeth Goodband (Fat Birds Cycling Club)
26 Michelle Buck (Fat Birds Cycling Club)
27 Eileen Roe (Swift Racing)
28 Jacqueline Garner (Team Luciano)
29 Anne Greig (Perth United Cycling Club)