By John Flynn
The end of the Crocodile Trophy meant an end not only to Belgian Karen Steurs' season, but also to her career. Pushed throughout by Australia's Jo Bennett, Steurs won the Australian stage race which finished on the beach in Cape Tribulation on October 30. Steurs raced over 42 hours, 40 minutes and 37 seconds.
She was quick to offer praise of her team-mates including husband Christophe.
"It's a wonderful end to my career, and I want to thank my two boys, for what they did for me this ten days, and also the other Belgian guys who have helped me."
In the final analysis, Steurs' experience on the road probably proved the difference between herself and Bennett, but the margin was always close.
"I came in with no expectations this race," said Bennett, who finished second at 27 minutes and 42 seconds back. "It just happened to be that another rider and I were both very strong, and we both battled it to the end. We had a very good time."
Australian Naomi Hansen finished third over four and a half hours back. Ondrej Fojtik (VIG+ Racing Team) won the men's race.
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of the Crocodile Trophy.