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Anna Wilson

1999 Stage 6 winner: Anna Wilson

Tour de Snowy Heading


March 4 - 9, 2000

Main Page    Results

Stage 9 - March 9: Cooma Criterium, 26.0 kms

By Jeff Jones

Stage winner Alison Wright
(click for larger image)
Photo: Jeff Jones

At about 4:30 pm, the rain was coming down hard, and there were mutterings at the impromptu press meeting in Cooma's Sovereign Inn Motel that the final stage would be cancelled. The criterium course downtown was half under water, making things a little difficult for the live TV coverage of the event. The gods appeared not to be smiling on SBS and C7 today. A prayer was offered over a bowl of asparagus soup, and lo! There was Sunshine for the first time in living memory (or so it seemed).

The criterium was made slightly shorter by cutting out the U-bend after the finish line, and there was a big crowd of locals out to watch 70 very fit cyclists tearing around the block for 35 minutes. In an almost carbon copy of the criterium in the Canberra - Cooma Classic recently, a group of four riders got away early on. The AIS were represented by Alison Wright, Timex by Odessa Gunn, and the Dutch by Mirella van Melis and Mariella van Scheppingen which made life hell for the commentators.

The break established a steady gap that hovered between 15 and 25 seconds, after a lot of spoiling work was done at the front of the bunch by the relevant teams. Timex were actually looking to set up Tracey Gaudry for the win, as she was feeling good for the stage, so Gunn was instructed not to do any work in the break.

The first and fourth of five sprint primes was won by Alison Wright, but Mirella van Melis (who won the crit two weeks ago) took the next two, with the last going uncontested to Gunn. Van Melis was saving herself for the win, helped by teammate van Scheppingen who was doing her best to keep the break in front. The bunch were stirred into action though, and started to close the gap, a few seconds at a time. With three to go, Jayco's Elizabeth Tadich got to the front and drove the bunch for two laps to within 6 seconds of the leaders.

The last lap was very quick and very dangerous, with a fall around the back creating some carnage. However, coming into the finishing straight, the break had just enough lead to hang on, and Alison Wright and Mirella van Melis both dived towards the left hand side to sprint it out. Wright was on the inside and ever so slightly behind, but she was determined to come through. They drew level with 50 meters to go, however Van Melis kept drifting in towards the barriers, leaving Wright absolutely nowhere to go but into them.

The resultant front-flip of Alison Wright almost across the finish line meant that her saddle probably crossed first after parting company with her bike. It was no matter, as Van Melis was rightly disqualified (for the stage and the race), and it was a miracle that Wright was not more seriously hurt. Afterwards she apologised to Wright, but the latter's tolerance was rather thin, as was the crowd's. Quotes which will not be repeated in a family oriented internet site.

In second and third place then were Timex teammates Odessa Gunn and Tracey Gaudry. Gaudry had come around everyone to win the bunch sprint, taking a few bonus seconds and more than a little kudos.

At the presentation, Wright had cooled off a little and was able to savour her win: "I've got a pretty sore bum now, but I'm really happy with the stage," she said, declining to provide Van Melis with a free character reference.

The final stage finished, and the winners were declared. The points competition was won by Australian and now World number one, Anna Wilson (Saturn), who won three stages of this race and came second and fourth in two others. The UCI points that she gained means that she will have the number one position in the rankings at least until the second round of the World Cup on March 18. Current number one, Hanka Kupfernagel (Ger) will not be out in Australia this Sunday to contest the first round.

The overall mountains and general classifications were won by one of the brightest rising stars in women's cycling at the moment. Geneviève Jeanson is only 18, and this is her first trip to Australia and her first UCI ranked elite women's stage race. She beat some of the world's best, when she took the race apart during stage 4 to Cabramurra and never really looked in trouble since.

"It was quite a journey to come to Australia, but I'm really glad I came. The organisation was quite amazing for this race, and I hope I can do it next year," she said. "Winning is never easy and Tracey is quite a fighter. This morning was hard because whenever I went for some food, there would be an attack so I couldn't eat for the whole stage. I was quite tired at the end."

"The criterium was scary and fast, and my coach told me to get up the front for the sprint. I stayed back though, and luckily I didn't come down in the crash."

"It was great to win, especially as my team had never ridden together before - they rode really well for me. I don't's great," she said, the emotion showing as she accepted the flowers and the pressure finally lifted from her shoulders. "I am thinking of my parents who I haven't seen for a while [she had previously been training in Arizona]. When they see my face on the internet, they are really happy," she finished, walking off the stage smiling. The appreciation of the crowd was evident, and they all saw someone during this race who has the potential to do a great deal in women's cycling.


1 Alison Wright (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                               37.28 (41.64 km/h)
2 Odessa Gunn (Can) Timex 
3 Tracey Gaudry (Aus) Timex 
4 Marielle Van Scheppingen (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland 
5 Katia Longhin (Ita) Master Team/Carpe Diem 
6 Karen Kurreck (USA) Canada 
7 Priska Doppman (Swi) Master Team/Carpe Diem 
8 Elizabeth Tadich (Aus) Jayco-VIS 
9 Mirjam Melchers (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland 
10 Ayumi Ootsuka (Jpn) Japan
11 Sara Carrigan (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
12 Arenda Grimberg (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland
13 Rosalind Reekie-May (NZl) New Zealand
14 Mari Holden (USA) Timex
15 Katie Mactier (Aus) Jayco-VIS
16 Geraldine Denham (Aus) Jayco-VIS
17 Anne Samplonius (Can) Canada
18 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) Canada
19 Naomi Williams (Aus) Jayco-VIS
20 Jacinta Coleman (NZl) New Zealand
21 Margaret Hemsley (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS
22 Anna Wilson (Aus) Saturn
23 Honi Geysen (Aus) Southern Regional Team
24 Tracey Bowyer (Aus) Velobelles
25 Anna Bayliss (Aus) Southern Regional Team
26 Sandy Espeseth (Can) Canada
27 Chantal Beltman (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland
28 Sanna Lehtimaki (Fin) Timex
29 Hayley Rutherford (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
30 Sigrid Corneo (Ita) Master Team/Carpe Diem
31 Bridget Evans (Aus) Master Team/Carpe Diem
32 Marcia Eicher Vouets (Swi) Master Team/Carpe Diem
33 Juanita Feldhahn (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
34 Ghita Beltman (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland
35 Akemi Morimoto (Jpn) Japan
36 Mika Ogishima (Jpn) Northern Regional Team
37 Fanny Lavierrie (NZl) Team 2001
38 Kym Shirley (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
39 Dellys Franke (Aus) Jayco-VIS
40 Sarah Ulmer (NZl) New Zealand
41 Kim Smith (USA) Timex
42 Erin Carter (Can) Canada
43 Erin Veenstra-Mirabella (USA) Timex
44 Jessica Amy (Aus) Jayco-VIS
45 Susy Pryde (NZl) Saturn
46 Dede Demet (USA) Saturn
47 Annabelle Vowels (Aus) Velobelles
48 Kirsty Robb (NZl) Team 2001
49 Natalie Bates (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS
50 Kerry Ellen Hellmuth (USA) Master Team/Carpe Diem
51 Annalisa Farrell (NZl) New Zealand
52 Vanessa Cheatley (NZl) New Zealand
53 Susan Hefler (USA) Canada
54 Benita Douglas (NZl) Team 2001
55 Jodie Vaassen (Aus) Velobelles
56 Julie Hooper (Aus) Southern Regional Team
57 Natalie Beetson (NZl) Team 2001
58 Sophie Freshwater (Aus) Saturn
59 Emma James (Aus) Sydney Water
60 Nadia Frischknecht (Aus) Sydney Water
61 Karen Sumpton (Aus) Southern Regional Team
62 Lucy Vignes (Aus) Sydney Water
63 Bianca Netzler (Sam) Northern Regional Team
64 Rebecca Cleveland (Aus) Southern Regional Team
65 Kristy Scrymgeour (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
66 Fiona Scarff (Aus) Velobelles
67 Miho Oki (Jpn) Japan
68 Belinda Probert (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS                       1.29
69 Kanako Nishi (Jpn) Northern Regional Team                   1.35
70 Mirella Van Melis (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                    DQ'd

Stage points:

1 Alison Wright (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                   5 pts
2 Odessa Gunn (Can) Timex                                         3
3 Tracey Gaudry (Aus) Timex                                       2
4 Marielle Van Scheppingen (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                 1

Final general classification:

1 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) Canada                           13.41.48
2 Tracey Gaudry (Aus) Timex                                    1.35
3 Anna Wilson (Aus) Saturn                                     6.38
4 Mari Holden (USA) Timex                                      6.54
5 Kym Shirley (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                  7.27
6 Jacinta Coleman (NZl) New Zealand                            9.00
7 Mirjam Melchers (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                       9.41
8 Rosalind Reekie-May (NZl) New Zealand                       10.08
9 Juanita Feldhahn (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                            10.28
10 Dede Demet (USA) Saturn                                    12.43
11 Susy Pryde (NZl) Saturn                                    13.35
12 Chantal Beltman (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                     16.57
13 Kim Smith (USA) Timex                                      19.58
14 Sandy Espeseth (Can) Canada                                19.59
15 Alison Wright (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                              20.10
16 Priska Doppman (Swi) Master Team/Carpe Diem                22.11
17 Karen Kurreck (USA) Canada                                 22.23
18 Sara Carrigan (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                              23.24
19 Marcia Eicher Vouets (Swi) Master Team/Carpe Diem          24.03
20 Julie Hooper (Aus) Southern Regional Team                  25.00
21 Sarah Ulmer (NZl) New Zealand                              25.09
22 Marielle Van Scheppingen (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland            27.26
23 Emma James (Aus) Sydney Water                              29.47
24 Katie Mactier (Aus) Jayco-VIS                              30.49
25 Erin Carter (Can) Canada                                   31.15
26 Sanna Lehtimaki (Fin) Timex                                31.50
27 Arenda Grimberg (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                     33.33
28 Katia Longhin (Ita) Master Team/Carpe Diem                 33.36
29 Annalisa Farrell (NZl) New Zealand                         34.23
30 Margaret Hemsley (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS                     34.27
31 Anne Samplonius (Can) Canada                               34.43
32 Jodie Vaassen (Aus) Velobelles                             35.24
33 Elizabeth Tadich (Aus) Jayco-VIS                           35.57
34 Hayley Rutherford (Aus) AIS-ACTAS
35 Vanessa Cheatley (NZl) New Zealand                         36.28
36 Natalie Bates (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS                        36.49
37 Erin Veenstra-Mirabella (USA) Timex                        36.58
38 Ghita Beltman (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                       37.05
39 Kirsty Robb (NZl) Team 2001                                37.43
40 Karen Sumpton (Aus) Southern Regional Team                 41.35
41 Geraldine Denham (Aus) Jayco-VIS                           42.07
42 Nadia Frischknecht (Aus) Sydney Water                      42.40
43 Lucy Vignes (Aus) Sydney Water                             44.19
44 Honi Geysen (Aus) Southern Regional Team                   46.30
45 Odessa Gunn (Can) Timex                                    47.33
46 Jessica Amy (Aus) Jayco-VIS                                48.51
47 Mika Ogishima (Jpn) Northern Regional Team                 49.11
48 Anna Bayliss (Aus) Southern Regional Team                  50.08
49 Akemi Morimoto (Jpn) Japan                                 50.34
50 Kristy Scrymgeour (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                          53.53
51 Sigrid Corneo (Ita) Master Team/Carpe Diem                 55.29
52 Annabelle Vowels (Aus) Velobelles                          56.06
53 Benita Douglas (NZl) Team 2001                             57.42
54 Ayumi Ootsuka (Jpn) Japan                                1.01.41
55 Fiona Scarff (Aus) Velobelles                            1.05.57
56 Kerry Ellen Hellmuth (USA) Master Team/Carpe Diem        1.09.21
57 Belinda Probert (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS                    1.10.09
58 Naomi Williams (Aus) Jayco-VIS                           1.10.24
59 Miho Oki (Jpn) Japan                                     1.15.02
60 Sophie Freshwater (Aus) Saturn                           1.18.13
61 Dellys Franke (Aus) Jayco-VIS                            1.19.18
62 Rebecca Cleveland (Aus) Southern Regional Team           1.20.34
63 Bianca Netzler (Sam) Northern Regional Team              1.22.53
64 Natalie Beetson (NZl) Team 2001                          1.23.35
65 Susan Hefler (USA) Canada                                1.28.30
66 Tracey Bowyer (Aus) Velobelles                           1.32.45
67 Fanny Lavierrie (NZl) Team 2001                          1.39.39
68 Kanako Nishi (Jpn) Northern Regional Team                1.47.45
69 Bridget Evans (Aus) Master Team/Carpe Diem               2.01.29
70 Mirella Van Melis (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                    DQ'd

Final mountains classification:

1 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) Canada                                 38 pts
2 Tracey Gaudry (Aus) Timex                                      30
3 Kym Shirley (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                    13
4 Mari Holden (USA) Timex                                        11
5 Jacinta Coleman (NZl) New Zealand                              11
6 Anna Wilson (Aus) Saturn                                        5
7 Susy Pryde (NZl) Saturn                                         3
8 Kim Smith (USA) Timex                                           2
9 Dede Demet (USA) Saturn                                         2
10 Mirjam Melchers (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                         2
11 Juanita Feldhahn (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                               2
12 Hayley Rutherford (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                              1

Final points classification:

1 Anna Wilson (Aus) Saturn                                       23 pts
2 Mirjam Melchers (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                         12
3 Sara Carrigan (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                   9
4 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) Canada                                  8
5 Mari Holden (USA) Timex                                         8
6 Tracey Gaudry (Aus) Timex                                       7
7 Alison Wright (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                   6
8 Kim Smith (USA) Timex                                           6
9 Susy Pryde (NZl) Saturn                                         4
10 Karen Kurreck (USA) Canada                                     3
11 Hayley Rutherford (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                              3
12 Kym Shirley (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                                    3
13 Marielle Van Scheppingen (Ned) Pays Bas-Holland                3
14 Sarah Ulmer (NZl) New Zealand                                  3
15 Jacinta Coleman (NZl) New Zealand                              3
16 Juanita Feldhahn (Aus) AIS-ACTAS                               2
17 Erin Carter (Can) Canada                                       1
18 Natalie Bates (Aus) Bicisport-NSWIS                            1
19 Emma James (Aus) Sydney Water                                  1
20 Rosalind Reekie-May (NZl) New Zealand                          1


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