Cadel Evans Great Ocean Race: Loes Adegeest outsprints Amanda Spratt for marquee win
E-sports world champion betters home favorite in first race of 2023 Women's WorldTour.
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New signing to FDJ-Suez and E-Sports world champion Loes Adegeest got the better of home favorite Amanda Spratt (Trek-Segafredo) at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race to take her first Women’s WorldTour win.
“It was a hard final of course with the steep climb and it was a long sprint. I’m still catching my breath,” Adegeest said Saturday.
“We went for Grace [Brown] but on the first climb I felt really strong and came over the top first and then we switched to plan B and it worked out,” the Dutch star continued.
“I still can’t really believe it so it has to sink in first. But of course to start the season like this, it’s only January and I already won a WorldTour race, it’s unbelievable.”
Spratt, who took second from a two-up sprint, said she was disappointed with how she raced the final.
“To be honest I’m a bit disappointed. The team rode so well to set up Brodie [Chapman] and myself for that final. We raced really well in the last couple of laps and then I just couldn’t shake Loes Adegeest there on the last lap,” she said.
“She told me she wasn’t allowed to work so then I was like what do I do because it’s still a good situation for us to try and get that to the finish line.
“I”m a bit disappointed. I think I messed up my sprint a bit. I mean second place, I’ve had a really good summer so I am happy.”
There were a few early breakaways in the race and plenty of attacks but the race mostly stayed together until Trek Segafredo and FDJ-Suez upped the pace ahead of the Challambra climb.
A move from EF Education-TIBCO’s Krista-Dobel Hickock on the lower slopes drew out the likes of Amanda Spratt, Nikola Nosková (Zaaf Cycling), and eventual winner Adegeest, but they were brought back by the remnants of the peloton.
Predictably, the group split again on the second time up the climb with Trek-Segafredo leading the charge for Spratt. The same trio of Adegeest, Spratt, and Noskova forced a gap.
Noskova was dropped as they crested the climb and Adegeest and Spratt held off the chasing peloton all the way to the line.
With Spratt having done the majority of the work the two played cat-and-mouse in the run-in to the finish with the peloton closing in behind. Adegeest opened up her sprint from behind and held off Spratt to the line to take her first Women’s WorldTour win.
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