By VeloNews Interactive, Copyright AFP2001
Canada’s Lyne Bessette overcame a final stage challenge to lock up her second overall win at France’s Tour de l’Aude on Sunday. Germany’s Judith Arndt and Bessette successfully chased down breakaway attempt by Susanne Ljungskog (Vlaanderen) the winner of the women’s edition of the Milan-San Remo World Cup, La Primavera Rosa.
With 40 kilometers remaining in the final stage, Lungskog – who started the day in fifth place overall at 7:50 — moved off the front of the field in an attempt to lock in a solo win, and a possible upset in the overall standings. But the two race leaders – Bessette in first and Arndt, second at 1:20 – moved quickly to neutralize the Swedish rider’s effort. The three then rode the remainder of the race together, with more than five minutes behind.Arndt made an attempt to breakaway and did succeed in taking five seconds out of Bessette’s lead, but the Canadian – who usually rides for the U.S. based Saturn squad – held on to the overall title, finishing the stage in second place. Ljungskog was the day’s biggest beneficiary as she moved from fifth to third overall.
1. Judith Arndt (G) German National, 3:27:09 (34.09kph); 2. Lyne Bessette (Can) Canadian National, at 0:05; 3. Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Vlaanderen T Interim, s.t.; 4. Olga Slioussareva (Rus) Carpe Diem – Itera, at 5:18; 5. Chantal Beltman (Nl) Dutch National; 6. Valentina Karpenko (Ukr) Ciegi; 7. Heidi Van De Vijver (Bel) Vlaanderen T Interim; 8. Julie Young (USA) Autotrader.Com; 9. Valentina Gerasimova (Rus) Ciegi;10. Vanessa Cheatley (NZl) Vlaanderen T Interim
1. Bessette, 26:28:58; 2. Arndt, at 1:11; 3. Ljungskog, 7:52; 4. Slioussareva, at 8:31; 5. Edita Pucinskaite (Lit), Alfa Lum Rsm, 8:49.