Mara Abbott (U.S. National Team) rode to another solo victory at the Giro Donne, winning the queen stage, 68.5km from Livigno to the top of the Passo dello Stelvio. Abbott took 27 seconds out of second place Emma Pooley (Cérvelo TestTeam) and 1:43 out of Judith Arndt (HTC-Columbia), who crossed the line in third.
The win bumps Abbott’s general classification lead up to 2:08 over Arndt and 3:05 over Tatiana Guderzo (Team Valdarno), giving her an excellent chance of becoming the first American to win the women’s Giro.
Pooley attacked a select group of 15 at the base of the Stelvio and only Abbott could match. The two worked together to increase their lead while Arndt and Guderzo chased hard from behind.
In the final 3km Abbott attacked, this time gapping Pooley. The Cérvelo rider fought to keep a manageable gap, but conceded 27 seconds by the finish.
In a dark moment in an otherwise bright day for the U.S. team, Abbott lost two valuable teammates on a fast downhill before the Stelvio. Amber Neben was taken to the hospital with a broken clavicle, while Amanda Miller soldiered on, coming in 40 minutes down aided by three teammates.
“The team was doing a very good job protecting Mara until the bottom of the Stelvio,” team director Manel Lacambra said after the stage. “But on the downhill before [the climb], Amanda and Amber crashed. Neben broke her clavicle and, we are very sad for this.”
“On the Stelvio, Mara was following wheels until Pooley attacked, and Mara went with her. This is a very nice victory on the mythical Stelvio, and I hope tomorrow we can defend the jersey and win the hardest Giro ever.”
- 1. Mara ABBOTT, US National Team, at 2:27:15
- 2. Emma POOLEY, Cervelo Test Team, at 27
- 3. Judith ARNDT, Team Columbia HTC Women, at 1:43
- 4. Tatiana GUDERZO, Team Valdarno, at 1:50
- 5. Tatiana ANTOSHINA, at 2:58
- 1. Mara Abbot (USA) US National Team, U.S. National Team, in 22:30:20
- 2. Judith Arndt (Ger) HTC Columbia Women, at 0:02:08
- 3. Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) Team Valdarno, at 0:03:05
- 4. Claudia Häusler (Ger) Cervelo TestTeam, at 0:05:29
- 5. Emma Pooley (GBr) Cervelo TestTeam, at 0:06:53