Posted by Editoress on 10/15/16
Numainville Finishes Top-10 in Women's Road Race
Joelle Numainville gave Canada its first top-10 finish of the 2016 Road World Championships on Saturday, in Doha, Qatar, finishing ninth in a field sprint. Three Canadians finished in the top-25 of the field of 146 riders.
The 134.1 kilometre Elite Women's road race began in Doha's Education City with a six kilometre neutral lap around the vast complex of schools and universities, before heading to seven laps of the 15 kilometre circuit on The Pearl island chain where the championships have been centered.
Team Canada: Joelle Numainville, Annie Foreman-Mackey, Alison Jackson, Sara Bergen, Leah Kirchmann, Karol-Ann Canuel
The early break: Nicole Hanselmann and Eri Yonamine (Japan)
Amber Neben (USA) was away in a lone break
Marianne Vos led the chase after Neben
Neben was reeled in as they started the last lap
No celebration because no one knew who had won
Despite a number of attacks and counterattacks, the majority of the field was still together as the race entered its final lap. The very strong Dutch team took control at the front of the race to set up their rider Kirsten Wild, while Canada's Karol-Ann Canuel, Alison Jackson and Leah Kirchmann worked to position Numainville. An Italian rider pulling her foot out of her pedal disrupted the sprint plan, but Numainville was able to get around the gap and close to finish ninth. Kirchmann finished 14th and Jackson 23rd. Amalie Dideriksen of Denmark beat Wild for the title.
"I think the team performance was really good," said Numainville. "Everyone did their best, and everyone committed to a plan. We are getting closer and closer [to the podium] and that's all we can hope for. I was so close and yet still so far away ... I'm happy, but I was so close! I think being in the top 20 in the world will change my ranking. I enjoyed myself, I rode up to my ability and I am proud of myself."
"It was awesome riding as a team today," said Kirchmann, "especially at the finish, when Joelle and myself were in a good position with 3K to go. Unfortunately, it got pretty messy in the sprint and we ended up losing each other. We didn't have the best finish, but it was still encouraging, and a good way to end the season."
"Our team really came together during the race," said Jackson. "We had a strong team and good representation throughout the entire race. The team placed better than last year, which I think is an accurate indicator of the direction women's cycling is going in Canada."
Other Canadian results include Canuel in 71st and Sara Bergen in 91st. Canadian road champion Annie Foreman-Mackey did not finish.
Race Note: Canada was the only country with 3 riders all finishing in a top 25