Canadian Cyclist


May 13/00 1:03 am - Tour de l'Aude

Posted by Editor on 05/13/00

Tour de l'Aude, France

Canadian national team member Leigh Hobson has been sending in reports for the tour de l'Aude. Here are May 11th and May 12th stages.

Day 7

It is about this time that things aside from your form begin to take an important role in whether you'll complete a stage race or not. Sickness, saddle problems, inability to eat enough, and mental fatigue are challenges to overcome, often greater than the toughest climbs in the tour! With four days of hard racing left, it's vital to keep your mind in the game. Gaps in the peloton form so quickly, that you can be off the back before you even realize what has happened. Couple the deflation of getting dropped with the accumulated fatigue in your body, and it's easy to see how riders can have bad days. Annie had such a day; yet, she also had the courage and strength to persevere, even after being sent the wrong way on the course! She finished the race with style!!

Today's 122km stage began and finished in Castelnauldry. As no one on team Canada was up on GC our goal was to get someone in a break. After 20km of attacks and covering attacks on the twisting narrow roads through many little towns, Sandy Espeseth got herself into a break with 7 other riders. At last we'd achieved one of our goals!! Hanka Kupfernagel's team kept tempo at the front of the peloton. We could see the break right up the road; however, they held fast and increased the gap from 35 seconds up to 4 minutes at one point!! As the break came within two kilometres from the finish, Sandy attacked but was caught and took fifth in the sprint. Saturn's Anna Wilson took the win.

Stage Results:

1st Anna Wilson (AUS) 3h 23' 10"
2nd Yvonne Brunen (FAR) st
3rd Arenda Grimberg (NED) st
4th Vanja Vonckx (VLA) st
6th Yuliya Murenka (UKR) st
7th V. Polkhanova (RUS) st
8th Chantal Beltman (NED) 06"
9th Ina Teutenberg (GER) 2' 36"
10th Mirjam Melchers (NED) st

Other Canadians:

32nd Leigh Hobson 2' 43"
35th Cybil DiGuistini st
44th Lyne Bessette st
49th Clara Hughes st
65th Annie Gariepy 27' 31"
DNS Leah Goldstein

Overall GC:

1st Hanka Kupfernagel (GER)
2nd Mirjam Melchers (NED) 3' 56"
3rd Geraldine Loewenguth (FRA) 4' 28"
4th Heidi Van De Vijver (BEL) 5' 19"
5th Tatiana Stiajkina (UKR) 7' 01"
6th Anna Wilson (SAT) 11' 07"
7th Madeleine Lindberg (FAR) 12' 40"
8th Juanita Feldhahn (AUS) 12' 50"
9th Chantal Beltman (NED) 13' 24"
10th Cindy Pieters (VLA) 13' 33"

Other Canadians:

11th Sandy Espeseth 13' 50"
12th Lyne Bessette 13' 54"
20th Leigh Hobson 17' 49"
22nd Cybil DiGuistini 18' 00"
29th Clara Hughes 21' 10"
57th Annie Gariepy 47' 48"


Yellow: Hanka Kupfernagel (GER)
Points: Ina Teutenberg (GER)
Mountain: Geraldine Loewenguth (FRA)
Sprints: Olga Slioussareva (RUS)
Young Rider: Arenda Grimberg (NED)

Overall Team Standings:

1st France
2nd Netherlands
3rd Radteam Kupfernagel
4th Vlaanderen 2002 Lady's Team
5th Canada/Australia
6th Saturn
7th Farm Frites/Timex
8th Ukraine
9th Russia
10th Germany
11th Lithuania
12th Master Team Carpe Diem

Day 8

The tour has travelled south and up to Font-Romeu, just on the border of France and Spain. It's a beautiful mountain village, and a nice change of scenery -- evergreen trees, snow capped mountains, and cascading valleys. The scenery isn't something you get too long to enjoy, however. You're often so focused on the wheel ahead of you, that the best of it simply passes you by!

Today's 77km race began with a 2km climb out of the village and then onto a 5km descent. The finish was on top of a 10km HC climb back into Font-Romeu. The roads were very wide and the teams quite almost felt like we were racing in Idaho at the HP Women's Challenge. One break got away on the descent with myself and approximately 6 other riders; however, it was quickly chased down, as too many teams had a vested interest in coming to the climb as a group. Cybil DiGuistini reclaimed the Young Rider's Jersey for the next stage, after a great finish. (She still holds the overall title; however, the jersey is awarded to the best placed finisher of each stage). Ukraine dominated the race today with both first and third place finishes.

Stage Results:
1st Tatiana Stiajkina (UKR) 2h 18' 32"
2nd Hanka Kupfernagel (GER) st
3rd Yuliya Murenka (UKR) st
4th Juanita Feldhahn (AUS) st
5th J. Polikevichiute (LTU) 03"
6th V. Polkhanova (RUS) 06"
7th Heidi Van De Vijver (BEL) 08"
8th Mirjam Melchers (NED) 08"
9th Cindy Pieters (BEL) 08"
10th Geraldine Loewenguth (FRA) 10"

Other Canadians:
11th Lyne Bessette 10"
12th Cybil DiGuistini 17"
24th Leigh Hobson 2' 11"
25th Sandy Espeseth 2' 11"
51st Clara Hughes 11' 21"
DNS Annie Gariepy

Overall GC:
1st Hanka Kupfernagel (GER)
2nd Mirjam Melchers (NED) 4' 10"
3rd Geraldine Loewenguth (FRA) 4' 44"
4th Heidi Van De Vijver (BEL) 5' 33"
5th Tatiana Stiajkina (UKR) 6' 57"
6th Anna Wilson (SAT) 11' 57"
7th Juanita Feldhahn (AUS) 12' 56"
8th Madeleine Lindberg (FAR) 13' 30"
9th Cindy Pieters (VLA) 13' 47"
10th LYNE BESSETTE (SAT) 14' 10"

Other Canadians:

14th Sandy Espeseth 16' 07"
17th Cybil DiGuistini 18' 23"
22nd Leigh Hobson 20' 06"
33rd Clara Hughes 32' 37"


Yellow: Hanka Kupfernagel (GER)
Points: Ina Teutenberg (GER)
Mountain: Tatiana Stiajkina (UKR)
Sprints: Arenda Grimberg (NED)

Overall Team Standings:

1st France
2nd Netherlands
3rd Radteam Kupfernagel
4th Canada/Australia
5th Vlaanderen 2002 Lady's Team
6th Saturn
7th Ukraine
8th Farm Frites/Timex
9th Russia
10th Germany
11th Lithuania
12th Master Team Carpe Diem


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