Judith Arndt of Team Columbia-Highroad capped her comeback from injuries by winning three stages and the overall victory in Spain's Iurreta-Emakumeen Bira stage race. She had missed almost the entire first four months of this season with broken bones.
Arndt, 32, caught two escapees on a rain-soaked descent on the day's last climb and then won the sprint in yesterday's final stage.
Cervélo TestTeam's Claudia Häusler and Columbia's Mara Abbott escaped on the last climb but were reeled in by Arndt vecore the finish. Arndt out-sprinted Häusler for the win, while Abbott finished in third. The result of the top three riders on the final stage mirrored their positions on the final general classification.
"I'm really pleased because I never expected to do this well after all my injuries in the spring and after not racing for so long," Arndt said. "But I've come back and I'm already doing much better than I could hope to do. It's something very special and really motivating."
"At the same time, the team has really stepped up and given me a huge amount of support in this race. I can't thank them enough."
Arndt broke her collarbone in a training accident in March. She subsequently broke a bone in her wrist in April.