Report: Kirstin Wild for Ladies Tour of Qatar


Stage 3 of the Ladies Tour of Qatar was as fast as it was eventful with an impressive average speed of over 45km/h climaxed by Kirsten Wild capturing her second consecutive stage win and taking command of the overall standings.

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Stage 3: Al Thakhira – Madinat Al Shamal, 112.5kms | 86 riders at the start (Druyts (VLL), non starter). Cloudy and windy

The Argos-Shimano leader is just a day, and a stage away, from a third success after triumphing in 2009 and 2010. She however only has a slim 3” lead. The 86 riders remaining in the race took off from the Al Thakhira harbour for the 3rd stage of the Ladies Tour of Qatar. It would be another tough day across the peninsula with strong winds making it tough for the riders. Despite several attempts, the pack remained bunched all the way to Al Zubara, north-west of Qatar.


Photo: ASO

After having covered close to 48 kilometres during the first hour due to the strong tailwind, Kirsten Wild (SKI) claimed the first intermediate sprint (km 60) and the precious 3 bonus seconds, beating Golden Jersey, Hosking (HPU) and Becker (SKI) to the line.

As the pack headed up north and the wind started blowing sideways, several riders failed to stay the pace. While a crash occurred in the peloton, a group of 18 ladies pulled away including race leader Hosking, Wild, Elvin (GEW), Van Dijk (SLU) and Worrack (SLU). The front group enjoyed a 40” lead at km 83 on a group of 22 including Cromwell (GEW), Gilmour and Bronzini (both WHT).

With 25kms to go, as the riders entered the final circuit, the first two groups came together before eight riders attacked but were rapidly caught before reaching Madinat Al Shamal for the second bonus sprint won by Brennauer (SLU) ahead of Blaak (TIB). These two had both broken away just before crossing the line. Kirtsen Wild powered to third spot ahead of the pack, 5” adrift.

With 10 kilometres to go, Brennauer and Blaak enjoyed a 10” lead but both were first caught by Fahlin (HPU) and Cantele (BPK) and then by the whole golden jersey group with 5 kilometres to go. Just under 40 riders moved closer to the finish line. With under 3kms to go, race leader Chloe Hosking suffered a puncture. Despite being eventually given the winner’s time, she could no longer hope for stage victory and extra bonus seconds. Well helped out by her Argos-Shimano team mates, Kirtsen Wild powered to a second consecutive stage win, beating Van Dijk and Bronzini.

The Dutch lady claimed her fifth victory in Qatar and took command of the overall standings. With just one day to go, Wild has a 3” lead over Gilmour and 16” over Elvin, while she also leads the points’ standings. Hosking remains best young rider of the event and will carry the White Pearl jersey tomorrow.

Team Wiggle Honda Press Release

Former World champion Bronzini took her first podium place of the season as she sprinted to third place in the third stage of the Ladies’ Tour of Qatar between Al Thakhira and Madinat Al Shamal. At the end of another day dominated by the desert wind, Bronzini used her track skills to stay near the front as a succession of attacks split the peloton in the closing kilometres. “The girls rode really well today,” said Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling directeur sportif Simon Cope. “It was a minefield out there to be honest, there were crashes all over the place, riders puncturing.

“The road surface wasn’t great today,” he explained. “We had a couple of punctures and mishaps there; Beatrice [Bartelloni] was with Bronzini, but she punctured and, of course, we couldn’t get her back.”

It was not all good news for the team however, as Commonwealth champion Rochelle Gilmore was brought down in a crash with just over ten kilometres to go and was forced to withdraw from the race. The Australian suffered a suspected fractured collarbone and while receiving treatment at the team car, Gilmore was pulled from the race by the commissaires. She would not have started the final stage regardless.

The first half of the 112.5km stage was ridden with a strong tailwind, which kept the peloton together until shortly after the first intermediate sprint at the 60km mark. Shortly afterwards though, the course turned 90 degrees and – as it had the day before – the Orica-AIS accelerated in the resulting crosswind.

The group split momentarily, with only Lauren Kitchen in the front group, but hard work from a number of riders closed the gap before it could get too wide and Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling’s Giorgia Bronzini, Rochelle Gilmore, Anna-Bianca Schnitzmeier and Kitchen were all close to the front of the race as it entered the closing stages.

Unfortunately, as the race was crossing the finishing line to begin a 13.5km finishing circuit, there was a crash in the fight for the bonus seconds on offer and Rochelle Gilmore was one of those to come down.

Successive attacks from a number of riders in the final kilometres whittled the front group down to just 14 riders, but Giorgia Bronzini and Lauren Kitchen were still present as the final sprint approached. Wild was the strongest again, ahead of van Dijk, but Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling’s Bronzini managed to take the final podium spot.

“Overall they rode really well today, did a lot of work, and Giorgia finished it off well,” said Cope. “For the work she did today, she did well. She did a hell of a lot of work bringing that group back when it split in two, she was the only one really working, which is understandable to a certain extent, why would a lot of teams want to take Gilmore and Bronzini to the finish line?”

Lauren Kitchen’s strong performance, finishing in the front group again, lifts her into the top ten; for a tantalising moment it also looked as though she was going to take the white young riders’ jersey from Hosking, but the commissaires awarded the Hitec Products riders the same time as the winner so Kitchen remains in second place in that competition.

1. WILD Kirsten TEAM ARGOS – SHIMANO 2h 28′ 15″
3. BRONZINI Giorgia WIGGLE HONDA + 00′ 02″
5. OLDS Shelley TEAM TIBCO-TO THE TOP + 00′ 04″
6. FRAPPORTI Simona BEPINK + 00′ 05″
7. WORRACK Trixi SPECIALIZED – LULULEMON 2h 28′ 20″ + 00′ 05″
8. JOHANSSON Emma ORICA – AIS + 00′ 05″
9. ELVIN Gracie ORICA – AIS + 00′ 05″
10. CROMWELL Tiffany ORICA – AIS + 00′ 05″


1. WILD Kirsten TEAM ARGOS – SHIMANO 7h 30′ 43″
3. ELVIN Gracie ORICA – AIS + 00′ 16″
6. JOHANSSON Emma ORICA – AIS + 00′ 29″
7. CROMWELL Tiffany ORICA – AIS + 00′ 31″



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