British champion Emma Pooley defended her title at the Grand Prix Plouay-Bretagne World Cup race on Saturday.
The Cervélo rider attacked a small group three kilometres from the finish and soloed home to win the race, in Brittany.
Marianne Vos, the Dutch rider, took the sprint for second place to wrap up overall victory in the World Cup classification. Sweden’s Emma Johansson was third. The podium was also a repeat of 2009.
Pooley has had a remarkable season. This was her seventh major international victory and second win in the World Cup, following Flèche Wallonne in the spring. She has also won the Tour de l’Aude and Giro del Trentino stage races as well as the National Road Race Championship at home.
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Pooley said: “It is just amazing, this victory. Actually, I didn’t expect that but the course and terrain of western France seems to suit me. We were a group of four riders coming into the final lap. I am not so strong in the sprints so I tried my luck on the Côte de Kerihuel and attacked but Marianne Vos was still on my wheel at the top”
“So I attacked again at Ty Marrec and this time I was able to get away and pushed hard on the final kilometres for the victory. It’s great to win here in Plouay again.”
Grand Prix de Plouay
1. Emma Pooley (GBr) Cervelo 3-12-37 hrs
2. Marianne Vos (Ned) Nederland Bloeit at 1-14
3. Emma Johansson (Swe) Redsun
4. Judith Arndt (Ger) HTC-Columbia all at same time
5. Evelyn Stevens (USA) HTC-Columbia at 2-35
6. Charlotte Becker (Ger) Cervelo at 3-33
7. Natalia Boyarskaya (Rus) Fenixs – Petrogradets at 3-37
8. Erinne Willock (Can) Canada at 5-49
9. Olga Zabelinskaya (Rus) Safi – Pasta Zara at same time
10. Rasa Leleivyte (Ltu) Safi – Pasta Zara at 5-57
World cup 2010
1. Marianne Vos (Ned) Nederland Bloeit 270pts
2. Emma Johansson (Swe) Redsun 209
3. Kirsten Wild (Ned) HTC-Columbia 202
4. Charlotte Becker (Ger) Cervelo 182
5. Judith Arndt (Ger) HTC-Columbia 161
6. Annemiek Van Vlueten (Ned) Nederland Bloeit 160
7. Grace Verbeke (Bel) Lotto 158
8. Emma Pooley (GBr) Cervelo 157
9. Adrie Visser (Ned) HTC-Columbia 137
10. Nicole Cooke (GBr) Great Britain 112
World Cup Team ranking
1. Cervelo 677 pts
2. HTC-Columbia 613
3. Nederland Bloeit 488
DOWSETT ON VERGE OF SKY MOVE
Britain’s Alex Dowsett is on the verge of confirming his move to Team Sky, as Cycling Weekly magazine reported three weeks ago.
The 21-year-old has been riding for Trek-Livestrong, an under-23 development squad with close ties to the Radioshack pro team.
He won the time trial at the European Under-23 Championships earlier this year and had been tipped to turn professional. After discussions with a few pro teams, it appears he favours the British-backed team.
HENDERSON WINS IT FOR SKY
Greg Henderson took advantage of another textbook Team Sky lead-out to win the fourth stage of the Eneco Tour in Roermond today (Saturday).
The Kiwi was the team’s designated sprinter today, with Edvald Boasson Hagen resorting to lead-out duties.
Boasson Hagen, whose bid to repeat last year’s overall victory was probably extinguished after HTC-Columbia’s Tony Martin gained more than a minute in a breakaway on Friday.
Henderson pipped Skil-Shimano’s Kenny Van Hummel on the line, with Boasson Hagen finishing third. Martin remains in the lead ahead of Koos Moerenhout (Rabobank).
It was Henderson’s fourth win of the season after victories in the Down Under Classic, Paris-Nice and the Ster Elektrotoer.
CUNEGO STAYS PUT
After months of speculation, Damiano Cunego has decided on his future. Following the news that the Lampre and ISD teams are to join forces next season, Cunego has signed for two more years. There had been rumours Cunego would join the Geox squad, run by Mauro Gianetti. Geox has already signed Russia’s Denis Menchov from Rabobank and Carlos Sastre from Cervélo.
TEAM SKY FOR PLOUAY
Defending champion Simon Gerrans will be able to call on support from his Team Sky team-mate Bradley Wiggins at the GP Ouest France-Plouay tomorrow (Sunday). It will be Wiggins’s first race since the Tour de France. Steve Cummings and Russell Downing are also riding for Sky.
NIBALI WINS MELINDA
Liquigas rider Vincenzo Nibali won the Trofeo Melinda in Italy on Saturday, ahead of Vladislav Borisov and Giovanni Visconti.
HEADING TO THE VUELTA
Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) will make his debut at the Vuelta a Espana and will hope to become the first British rider since Robert Millar to win stages of all three grand tours. Ben Swift, Ian Stannard and Peter Kennaugh are the three British riders in Team Sky’s line-up for the Spanish race, which starts on August 28. David Millar is named in Garmin-Transitions’ provisional team and Roger Hammond is set to ride for Cervélo. Ireland’s Philip Deignan is also in the Cervélo team and Nicolas Roche is set to ride for AG2R.
LARSSON WINS IN LIMOUSIN
Sweden’s Gustav Erik Larsson clinched overall victory in the Tour du Limousin on Friday. The Saxo Bank rider’s winning performance in the 43-kilometre time trial early in the race set him up for the overall honours. The final stage was taken by Davide Appollonio, an Italian riding for Cervélo Test Team. It was Appollonio’s first pro win. He attacked hard with a couple of kilometres to go and held off the sprinters. Team Sky’s best-placed rider overall was Thomas Löfkvist, who was sixth, 1-44 down. David Dario Cioni was ninth. Löfkvist will now lead them into the Vuelta a Espana, which starts on Saturday (August 28).