2003 Road World Championships - CM
Hamilton, Canada, October 7-12, 2003
live report Results
Day 2 - October 8: Elite Women Time Trial, 20.8 km
Complete Live Report
Commentary by Chris Henry, with additional reporting by Mark Zalewski
Time conversion guide: GMT = CEST - 2 hrs, AEST = CEST + 8 hrs, EDT = CEST
- 6 hrs, PDT = CEST - 9 hrs
Start time: 14:00 EDT
Last arrival expected at: 16:00 EDT
Welcome to day two of the World Championships and Cyclingnews' live coverage of the Elite Women's time trial. The women will complete one lap of the 20.8km course which starts with a climb up the Niagara Escarpment, does a loop across the top, which has the tendency to be windy, drops back down and goes immediately back up before dropping again for the very fast descent to the finish line. The course will suit a power rider with good technical skills as the course had quite a few corners.
Previous World Time Trial Champions are on the start list, including Jeanie Longo (France) and Zoulfia Zabirova (Russia), who won the event last year and has shown her form this year winning two stages of the Grande Boucle, amongst other races.
These three will be challenged by some very strong riders such as German national time trial champion Judith Arndt, who recently won the time trial in the GP Canada, securing her win of the tour, Australian national time trial champion Sara Carrigan, who won the time trial at tour de L'Aude this year, and reigning road champion Susanne Ljungskog (Sweden), recent winner of the Giro della Toscana.
Forty four riders are scheduled to compete today, starting at intervals of a minute and a half. The last rider, defending world champion Zoulfia Zabirova of Russia, starts at 3:14pm.
The first women are off under sunny skies and very mild temperatures (74 F). The wind is much stronger today, however, and given how often the course turns, the wind will come early and often.
New Zealand's Melissa Holt takes off from the start house.
The first of two Americans, Kristen Armstrong, takes the start.
The first rider off today, Sinead Jennings (Ireland), reaches the intermediate time check at 8.2km in 13'06. She sets the first marker for the others to chase.
Some of the early women off don't look to be enjoying the first climb of the course. Bogumila Matusiak of Poland is handling it ok, powering out of the saddle to the top of the hill.
For the moment it's the Israeli Leah Goldstein who has the best time at 8.2km, 12'25.
Former road world champion Rasa Polikeviciute (Lithuania) has just launched from the start house.
Great Britain's Frances Newstead now holds the fastest time at the first intermediate check.
Mirjam Melchers is next off the ramp for the Netherlands.
Armstrong from the USA is confirming what looked to be a good start on the climb, and has passed the first time check in first place.
Australia's Olivia Gollan takes off now from the start and gets up to speed.
Sinead Jennings gets the honour of setting the first finishing time, though it's not going to hold up very long. She completed the course in 32'01. Sure enough, Goldstein comes in 1'23 faster than Jennings.
Mirjam Melchers is the next to set the best time, passing the 8.2km mark in 12'00, seven seconds ahead of France's Edwige Pitel. So far Goldstein's time holds up at the finish.
China's Meifang Li takes off and is immediately slowed by a problem with her cleat, but she's back in and rolling.
Newstead now comes into the finish to set the best time with 30'26, but Armstrong
is just two riders behind and will likely set a faster time.
Dede Demet-Barry is the next American to start, and she rolls smoothly through the first corner, which has already proven a minor sticking point for some riders.
Happy birthdy to Dede, who today turns 31. Any guesses as to what she might want for her birthday?
Lada Kozlikova (Czech Republic) has now set the fastest time at the first intermediate check.
Canada's star Geneviève Jeanson takes the start now. Cyclingnews spoke to Jeanson before the race today to get her impressions on the course.
"I feel ok, I feel good," she said. "I raced nationals on [this course] so I
know it. Every part is difficult; you have to go fast the whole way through.
I live in North America so I am used to [the road conditions]."
A little background info on today's first starter, Sinead Jennings, courtesy of Shane Stokes of Irishcycling.com. Sinead's main sport is actually rowing. She won the lightweight single sculls world championship in 2001. In the past she did a bit of triathlon, and only actually got back to cycling this summer as she was on a break from rowing! She has been doing bike-specific training for about a month, but should have a good future if she concentrated a little more on it.
At the moment, her main focus is on rowing in the Olympics next year, but a good showing in Hamilton might persuade her to consider cycling in the longer term.
Cyclingnews also spoke with Kristen Armstrong before her race today.
"I am hoping to have a great race," she said confidently. "I think this is going to be a nice challenging course for both my teammate and me. We rode it a few times and it's a powerful course. It's not for the flat specialists, but I think that the powerful riders will do well. It's windy out there; you can't really tell in town, but on the ridge. I think some of my international results have shown I will be a strong contender."
Meanwhile, former world champion and eternal favourite Jeannie Longo takes the start for France. Originally scheduled for just the time trial, Longo will also contest the road race Saturday as a substitute in the French team.
The second Canadian out on the course now is Lyne Bessette. She enjoys wild cheers from the crowd as she dives through the first corner.
Her compatriot Jeanson is looking very fast further up the road.
For the moment France's Edwige Pitel holds the best time at the finish: 29'53.
Olivia Gollan has made up time in the second half of the course, coming in for fourth place, 20" behind Pitel. In contrast, Mirjam Melchers, who had set the best time at the 8.2km split, was not able to maintain her advantage and finished third behind Pitel and Armstrong.
Jeanson has taken the new best time at 8.2km ahead of Dede Demet-Barry.
Australia's Sara Carrigan now takes the start, with only four more riders to follow: Somarriba, Brändli, Kupfernagel, and Zabirova.
Great Britain's Wendy Houvenaghel comes in to the finish with Lada Kozlikova hot on her heels, setting a new fastest time by roughly 30 seconds on Pitel.
Before her race, Houvenaghel had this to say to Cyclingnews:
"I rode the course with the other team members. It's very challenging, very undulating. It's going to be quite a test for all concerned. These hills will really test us all. [The conditions] are only slightly worse towards the finish."
Jeannie Longo has had a great start, just 13" off the pace at the first time check. Her wealth of experience may pay off and she could come up with another big result if she can steadily lift the pace.
The surprise of last year, Karin Thürig of Switzerland, is confirming this year with the fastest time at 8.2km. She comes through in 11'28.
New Zealand's Kirsty Nicole Robb finishes now in 12th place with a time of 30'56.
Lyne Bessette has reached the first split but is in 8th place for the moment. Up ahead, Longo is continuing to look good, showing that her pre-World's training in California may be paying off.
China's Meifang Li comes home for 8th place, which is a good ride considering her hiccup at the start and apparent difficulty on the first climb where she was overgeared.
Dede Demet has just finished in the second best time for the moment.
Joane Somarriba has set the fastest time now at 8.2km, flying through in 11'20.
Anita Valen finishes for Norway, but with a modest performance good for 18th place.
Jeanson now comes in for the fastest time, to the great satisfaction of the Canadian public. She finishes in 29'11, but keep in mind that Somarriba was 18" faster at the first time check.
Judith Arndt (Germany) is plunging down the descent now, demonstrating perfect form on the bike but still looking to make up time.
At the first time check, the defending champion Zabirova is not having the best day, crossing the line in 4th best time.
Defending road world champion Susanne Ljunkskog finishes in only 16th place, while right behind her Jeannie Longo sprints in for a second fastest time.
Somarriba is looking strong, accelerating well out of the corners and turning the legs at a high cadence.
Switzerland's Thürig finishes in the fastest time now, 28'50, taking 21 seconds out of Jeanson!
Somarriba is catching Sara Carrigan, who started a minute and a half before her. The Basque winner of this year's Grande Boucle Féminine looks set to be the last real challenger for the rainbow jersey, chasing Karin Thürig's time.
Lyne Bessette comes into the finish for a provisional 12th place.
Judith Arndt has made up an enormous amount of time since the first intermediate check and has just taken the best time! She made up some 30" in just 11km of racing and has pushed Thürig back to second place. Can Somarriba now outdo the powerful German?
Yes, Somarriba has done it! She sprints to the line and takes the best time, 11" faster than Arndt. With three riders left to finish, the podium may well finish with Somarriba on top, followed by Arndt and Thürig.
On the second climb, Zabirova has passed Germany's Kupfernagel, who is in all sorts of trouble on the long drag.
Zabirova is coming into the finish, but she hasn't enjoyed the hills of Hamilton. That's not to say she's had a bad ride, because she's challenging for the podium and succeeds in getting the bronze medal.
Kupfernagel struggles home in 21st place.
Somarriba is shedding (many) tears of joy, overwhelmed by her victory.
Finish - 20.8 km
1 Joana Somarriba Arrola (Spain) 28.23
2 Judith Arndt (Germany) 0.11
3 Zoulfia Zabirova (Russia) 0.26
4 Karin Thürig (Switzerland) 0.27
5 Geneviève Jeanson (Canada) 0.48
6 Jeannie Longo Ciprelli (France) 0.59
7 Lada Kozlikova (Czech Republic) 1.02
8 Deirdre Demet-Barry (USA) 1.16
9 Teodora Ruano Sanchon (Spain) 1.22
10 Edita Pucinskaite (Lithuania) 1.25
1 Joana Somarriba Arrola (Spain) 11.21
2 Karin Thürig (Switzerland) 0.08
3 Geneviève Jeanson (Canada) 0.18
4 Zoulfia Zabirova (Russia) 0.22
5 Judith Arndt (Germany) 0.22
6 Jeannie Longo Ciprelli (France) 0.32
7 Deirdre Demet-Barry (USA) 0.32
8 Lada Kozlikova (Czech Republic) 0.34
9 Sara Carrigan (Australia) 0.38
10 Mirjam Melchers (Netherlands) 0.39
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