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Montreal World Cup - CDM
Canada, May 28, 2005, 2005
Jeanson generates a great win
by Matt Hansen
The "Queen of Lachine", the "Generator", call her what you will - Geneviève Jeanson can now add "Four-time winner of the Montreal World Cup" to her list of nicknames. The 23-year-old took an impressive victory today, waiting until the final gallop up the steep finishing sprint to burn away from the remains of the peloton.
After threats of rain, sunny skies and warm temperatures greeted the 97-strong field on the slopes of Mont Royal today for the seventh round of the women's World Cup. The tough course, composed of twelve 8.35km laps, for a 100km total, proved once again to be a race of attrition - but only in the closing laps.
Perhaps out of fear of the grueling 2km climb that riders must tackle each lap, the pace from the get-go was pedestrian - the pack bunched up from both sides of the road, giving the appearance of a training ride, not a World Cup race. The European teams like Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team, Nurnberger Versicherung or Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan, still feeling the effects of the tough Tour de l'Aude stage race and transcontinental flight, seemed content to ride at an slow pace and allow their legs to warm up, allowing some of the local riders in the race a chance to truly soak in the only stop on the World Cup circuit in North America.
Despite the easy pace, all the contenders were still seen at the front, being careful not to let someone creep away. Jeanson was always floating at the front of the field, in her words, being "vigilant and focused", often finding herself riding near her longtime rival Lyne Bessette (Ellicyle Sport Expert/Louis Garneau). But it wasn't until the final three laps of the race where things started getting serious. With nine laps covered, the field was still quite large - almost fifty riders still remained - but not for long.
On lap nine, Amber Neben, now riding for the Buitenpoort - Flexpoint squad, made a charge that brought a flurry of action from the field and saw Jeanson match the American up the climb; this short-lived move was to be the straw that broke the peloton's back, as more and more riders soon began falling off the pace. By the 10th lap, Jeanson was still seen at the front of the pack, testing her legs and her competition, almost burning the leaders off as they crested the climb for the third-to-last time. This more or less proved to separate the "women from the girls", as the peloton rid itself of any pretender, now a group of just under twenty riders.
Tour de l'Aude stage winner Gollan tried on the descent, followed by a number of counters which would not stick. Perhaps hoping to emulate Dede Barry's surprise win of 2002, all the strong European teams alternated sending their riders for solos. Interestingly, several ex-RONA riders were quite active, such as New Zealand's Meshy Holt, who later added that she "felt great today; really super, and stoked to be back racing in Canada. This is such a great race, such a great crowd." Jeanson's former lieutenant, Erinne Willock, now with a carte blanche to lead her Webcor team today, had the help of Olympian Christine Thorburn and Katheryn Curi, both visible at the front in the final laps of the race, setting tempo leading up to the hill. Jeanson herself remarked upon this phenomenon after the race, saying, "I knew I had to stay focused and careful. I saw all of my old teammates today at the front, but they were on other teams!"
The final lap saw Biovail's Lynn Gaggioli almost fool them all. "Gagg" took advantage of a moment of hesitation in the lead group over the top of the climb and used her terrific jump to get a slight lead on the descent. But the pack strung itself out and Gaggioli was brought back - until she launched again, creating a gap of a few hundred metres that looked like it might just work. But it was not to be; with a kilometre to go she was reeled in.
As the climb continued, Neben went to the front and was surrounded by all the favourites left: Jeanson, Willock, Suzanne Ljungskog and Judith Arndt were grouped together, setting the stage for a tough sprint finish. But still, apprehension reigned supreme, and it was Willock who broke the stalemate, attacking on the steepest section of the course around the final corner. Jeanson jumped on Willock's wheel and came by her, as the Webcor rider faded, ultimately finishing sixth. Jeanson continued hard, driving it to put an impressive gap on Oenone Wood and Mirjam Melchers-van Poppel, both of whom had played it cool until the finale - perhaps waiting too long and underestimating Jeanson's kick, which saw her take a strong win.
Post race, Jeanson said of Willock, "She was climbing very well and I took her wheel. But I was watching her closely and, as soon as I felt she was losing momentum, I went full throttle. I didn't know what was going on behind me, I looked back and saw a gap. Then I knew I had won."
Of the race overall, Jeanson commented, "It was a wait-and-see game today, but I was prepared for anything; I waited for attacks, I was ready to respond, I was in alert mode from start to finish. I was concentrating so hard that the race went by in a flash. Now I'm more drained mentally than physically.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Mitch Friedman/www.mitchophoto.com
1 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) ACDA -Rona 2.55.43 2 Oenone Wood (Aus) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 0.02 3 Mirjam Melchers-Van Poppel (Ned) Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team 0.04 4 Annette Beutler (Swi) QUARK 5 Suzanne Ljungskog (Swe) Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team 6 Erinne Willock (Can) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 7 Judith Arndt (Ger) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 8 Christine Thornburn (USA) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 9 Edita Pucinskaite (Ltu) Nobili Rubinetterie - Menikini Cogeas 10 Dorte Lohse Rasmussen (Den) Team S.A.T.S 0.11 11 Amber Neben (USA) Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team 0.13 12 Andrea Graus (Aut) ELK Haus - Tirol No 0.15 13 Susan Palmer-Komar (Can) Colavita/Cooking Light 0.20 14 Dotsie Cowden (USA) Colavita/Cooking Light 0.22 15 Patricia Schwager (Swi) ELK Haus - Tirol No 0.31 16 Lynn Gaggioli (USA) Biovail 0.42 17 Joanne Kiesanowski (NZl) Nobili Rubinetterie - Menikini Cogeas 0.52 18 Lyne Bessette (Can) Ellicyle Sport expert Louis Garneau 1.00 19 Daniella Fusar Poli (Ita) Nobili Rubinetterie - Menikini Cogeas 1.03 20 Ana Paola Madrinan Villegas Col Federacion Colombiana de Ciclismo 1.10 21 Katheryn Curi (USA) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 2.02 22 Kirsten Robbins (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada 23 Trine Hansen (Den) Team S.A.T.S 24 Olga Slyusareva (Rus) Nobili Rubinetterie - Menikini Cogeas 2.08 25 Olivia Gollan (Aus) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 26 Melissa Holt (NZl) Team S.A.T.S 27 Rachel Heal (GBr) Team S.A.T.S 2.13 28 Kim Anderson (USA) Colavita/Cooking Light 2.19 29 Sigrid Corneo (Ita) Nobili Rubinetterie - Menikini Cogeas 2.34 30 Leigh Hobson (Can) Diet Cheerwine 3.40 31 Felicia Greer (Can) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 32 Maria Luisa Calle Williams Col Federacion Colombiana de Ciclismo 3.42 33 Amy Moore (Can) QUARK 34 Stéphanie Bourbeau (Can) Équipe du Québe 3.46 35 Michelle Beltran (USA) Colavita/Cooking Light 3.49 36 Miyoko Karami (Jpn) Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan 3.56 37 Barbara Howe (USA) Velo Bella 3.59 38 Susan Weldon (USA) Subway 39 Alessandra Grassi (Ita) Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan 4.22 40 Crissa Ruite (USA) Composite international-BASIS 4.37 41 Grace Fleury (USA) QUARK 5.02 42 Anke Wichmann (Ger) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 5.11 43 Audrey Lemieux (Can) QUARK 5.31 44 Merrill Collins (Can) Diet Cheerwine 7.09 45 Sima Trapp (USA) Subway 46 Kistine Danielson (USA) Composite international-BASIS 47 Melissa Sanborn (USA) Subway 48 Linda Serup (Den) Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team 49 Madeleine Lindberg (Swe) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 7.14 50 Stefanie Graeter (USA) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 7.50 51 Jennifer Stephenson (Can) Biovail 8.54 52 Gessica Turato (Ita) Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan 8.56 53 Tara Ross (Can) Diet Cheerwine 9.14 54 Hiroko Shimada (Jpn) Velo Bella 9.36 55 Betina Hold (Can) Webcor Builders Women's Cycling Team 11.03 56 Melodie Metzger (USA) Velo Bella 57 Nicole Wangsgard (USA) Subway 12.09 58 Gabriella Gonzalez-Ferrat (Mex) Velo Bella 12.44 59 Christine Mueller (Ger) ELK Haus - Tirol No 16.13 60 Jennifer Chapman (USA) Velo Bella 61 Rhonda Stickle (Can) Diet Cheerwine 17.04 62 Monica Lorena Mendes Ortiz Col Federacion Colombiana de Ciclismo 17.46 63 Amanda Shaw (Can) Biovail 64 Millerlandy Escobar Col Federacion Colombiana de Ciclismo 65 Dulce Pliego Moreno (Mex) Composite international-BASIS 66 Caroline Montminy (Can) Équipe du Québe 67 Cathrine Walberg (USA) ACDA -Rona 68 Caroline Théberge (Can) Équipe du Québe 69 Helena Coney (Can) Composite international-BASIS 70 Lisa Sweeney (Can) Ellicyle Sport expert Louis Garneau 71 Anna Garnett (Can) Biovail 72 Rebecca Nelson (Can) Biovail 73 Kelly Benjamin (USA) ACDA -Rona 74 Magan Long (USA) ACDA -Rona 75 Marielle Aunave (Fra) Composite international-BASIS 76 Jennifer Magur (USA) Biovail Did not Finish Regina Schleicher (Ger) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung Rochelle Gilmore (Aus) Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan Patricia Hempel (Ger) ELK Haus - Tirol No Anna Tratnyek (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada Kylie case (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada Jenny Trew (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada Suzanne Macht (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada Heather Lamson (Can) Équipe Nationale du Canada Helen Kelly (Aus) QUARK Kate Sherwin (USA) QUARK Joanie Caron (Can) Ellicyle Sport expert Louis Garneau Geneviève Gagnon (Can) Ellicyle Sport expert Louis Garneau Julie Bélanger (Can) Diet Cheerwine Julia Farell (Can) Diet Cheerwine Élisa Gagnon (Can) Équipe du Québe Marie-Pier Bédard (Can) Équipe du Québe Ashley Robinson (Ber) Composite international-BASIS Monika Schachl (Aut) ELK Haus - Tirol No
1 Oenone Wood (Aus) Équipe Nurnberger Versicherung 242 2 Susanne Ljunskog (Swe) Buitenpoort - Flexpoint Team 223