Alice Maria Arzuffi (Steylaerts-777.be) won the third round of the Superprestige Ladies Trophy at Gavere, going solo for over half the race to take her first win of the season. A well-paced effort saw Nikki Brammeier (Mudiita Pro Team) finish second 17 seconds down, while 38 seconds back Sanne Cant (Iko-Beobank) took third place, just ahead of Annemarie Worst (Steylaerts-777.be).
In the early stages of the race it was Cant and Worst who dominated proceedings, but after the surge of the first two laps, it seemed as though they had gone out too fast, with Arzuffi bridging a 17-second gap before going on the attack herself.
At the midway point of the race, the Italian was away for good, and all that remained was the battle for the other podium places. Brammeier's late surge interrupted what looked to be a Cant-Worst battle, with the Brit saving her effort for the closing laps as Cant outsprinted Worst for third.
"One of my season goals was to get some podium places at the Superprestige races," Arzuffi said after the race. "Today it's my first Superprestige victory and I'm very happy.
"I have to thank the team because if it were not for them I probably wouldn't have managed to get this far."
How it happened
World champion Sanne Cant (Iko-Beobank) led things out from the start, going out fast. Midway through the opening lap it was newly-crowned European champion Worst who went on the offensive, stretching out the lead group with Cant, Arzuffi and Ceylin del Carmen Alvarado (Corendon-Circus) chasing one by one.
At the start of lap two, Worst and Cant were separated by 7 seconds while Arzuffi and Alvarado lay 17 seconds down. Next on track were the two Brits, Brammeier and Helen Wyman (Xypex-Verge Sport) who were around 30 seconds back. Cant took the lead soon after, as Worst slipped on the thick mud and hit the deck heading into the pits.
Arzuffi soon joined the leaders, making it three up front with Alvarado and Brammeier 22 seconds behind. Lap three saw the Italian push on to lead alone, with Cant and Worst falling back within striking distance of Brammeier. With Arzuffi's relentless pace, she made short work of building an advantage of 20 seconds over the chasers.
Meanwhile Brammeier was powering on, passing Cant and Worst before the start of the final lap. Arzuffi was already gone, almost half a minute up the road, but the battle for second and third was still on, though Brammeier enjoyed a 13-second lead over the chasing World and European champions, while Italian champion Eva Lechner (Clif Pro Team) was coming up fast.
Perhaps feeling the effort from Saturday's win in the DVV Trofee, Cant couldn't match Worst when the Austrian upped the pace midway through the last lap. They were soon reunited though, with Wyman close behind.
With the first two podium places already decided, it was down to a sprint for third as Cant led out. The Belgian held on to take it, beating out Worst, who made it a 1-4 for Steylaerts-777.be.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Alice Maria Arzuffi (Ita) Steylaerts-777||0:45:25|
|2||Nikki Brammeier (GBr) Mudiita Pro Team||0:00:17|
|3||Sanne Cant (Bel) Beobank-Corendon||0:00:38|
|4||Annemarie Worst (Ned) Steylaerts-777|
|5||Helen Wyman (GBr)||0:00:42|
|6||Eva Lechner (Ita) Creafin Tüv Sud||0:00:51|
|7||Ceylin Del Carmen Alvarado (Ned) Corendon - Circus||0:01:05|
|8||Lucinda Brand (Ned) Team Sunweb Women||0:01:09|
|9||Kim Van De Steene (Bel) Tarteletto - Isorex||0:01:24|
|10||Denise Betsema (Ned) Marlux - Bingoal||0:01:34|
|11||Christine Majerus (Lux) Boels Dolmans||0:01:51|
|12||Fleur Nagengast (Ned) Telenet Fidea Lions|
|13||Ellen Van Loy (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions||0:02:24|
|14||Laura Verdonschot (Bel) Marlux - Bingoal||0:02:43|
|15||Geerte Hoeke (Ned) Creafin Tüv Sud||0:03:40|
|16||Manon Bakker (Ned)||0:03:51|
|17||Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel)||0:04:00|
|18||Inge Van Der Heijden (Ned)||0:04:11|
|19||Elle Anderson (USA)||0:04:26|
|20||Shirin Van Anrooij (Ned)||0:04:51|
|21||Pauline Delhaye (Fra)||0:05:22|
|22||Emily Wadsworth (GBr) Tp Racing||0:05:49|
|23||Aniek Van Alphen (Ned)||0:06:40|
|24||Katherine Compton (USA)||0:06:49|
|25||Marthe Truyen (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions||0:06:57|
|26||Esther Van Der Burg (Ned)||0:08:20|
|27||Susanne Meistrok (Ned)|
|28||Tereza Vaníčková (Cze)|
|29||Jana Dobbelaere (Bel)|
|30||Aurélie Vermeir (Bel)|
|31||Laetitia Maus (Lux)|
|32||Kim Van De Putte (Bel)|
|33||Tessa Zwaenepoel (Bel)|
|34||Suzie Godart (Lux)|
|35||Irene Gerritsen (Ned)|
|36||Jo Blanchaert (Bel)|
|37||Famke Van Waterschoot (Ned)|
|DNF||Maud Kaptheijns (Ned) Crelan - Charles|