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Werner gets the win as confusion reigns in opening round of Santos Women's Cup

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The podium, Grace Sulzberger (Jayco-AIS), Rebecca Werner (Specialized), and Skye-Lee Armstrong (Giant)

The podium, Grace Sulzberger (Jayco-AIS), Rebecca Werner (Specialized), and Skye-Lee Armstrong (Giant)
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Chloe Hosking (Specialized) out of the saddle

Chloe Hosking (Specialized) out of the saddle
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Riders speed past the famous Stag Hotel on East Terrace

Riders speed past the famous Stag Hotel on East Terrace
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) rode an agressive, attacking race

Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) rode an agressive, attacking race
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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GreenEDGE-AIS riders, Jessie Maclean and Shara Gillow look out for reactions behind them

GreenEDGE-AIS riders, Jessie Maclean and Shara Gillow look out for reactions behind them
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) in the bunch

Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) in the bunch
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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An attack by Loes Gunnewijk (GreenEDGE-AIS) was shown on the big screen behind her

An attack by Loes Gunnewijk (GreenEDGE-AIS) was shown on the big screen behind her
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) chases Gunnewijk

Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) chases Gunnewijk
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The Specialized SA women had to work hard, they made the race aggressive...Chloe Hosking attacks

The Specialized SA women had to work hard, they made the race aggressive...Chloe Hosking attacks
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Rowena Fry (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads Arndt and Sulzberger at the front

Rowena Fry (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads Arndt and Sulzberger at the front
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Celebration time for Laura Werner (Specialized SA) when she wins the first race in the Santos Cup

Celebration time for Laura Werner (Specialized SA) when she wins the first race in the Santos Cup
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The Specialized women line up together after their victory

The Specialized women line up together after their victory
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS) and Gracie Elvin (Jayco-AIS) went away together, but were not allowed much space

Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS) and Gracie Elvin (Jayco-AIS) went away together, but were not allowed much space
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Another of the GreenEDGE-AIS Europeans, Loes Gunnewijk, in the bunch

Another of the GreenEDGE-AIS Europeans, Loes Gunnewijk, in the bunch
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Under 23 Australian criterium Champion, Melissa Hoskins (GreenEDGE-AIS)

Under 23 Australian criterium Champion, Melissa Hoskins (GreenEDGE-AIS)
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The time trial World Champion, Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) raced the Santos Cup

The time trial World Champion, Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) raced the Santos Cup
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The women wait to start their short, fast criterium

The women wait to start their short, fast criterium
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Kate Bates was given the honour of firing the start gun

Kate Bates was given the honour of firing the start gun
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Early in the race, Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) attacked, but was marked

Early in the race, Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA) attacked, but was marked
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Loren Rowney (Specialized) also took the pace high during the race

Loren Rowney (Specialized) also took the pace high during the race
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The Australian criterium Champion, Alexis Rhodes (GreenEDGE-AIS) in the bunch

The Australian criterium Champion, Alexis Rhodes (GreenEDGE-AIS) in the bunch
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) chases down Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)

Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) chases down Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) chases down Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)

Judith Arndt (GreenEDGE-AIS) chases down Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Tiffany Cromwell (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads a small group which broke away

Tiffany Cromwell (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads a small group which broke away
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads under the start / finish arch

Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS) leads under the start / finish arch
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)
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The podium, Grace Sulzberger (Jayco-AIS), Kate Bates, Rebecca Werner (Specialized), David Knox (Santos) and Skye-Lee Armstrong (Giant)

The podium, Grace Sulzberger (Jayco-AIS), Kate Bates, Rebecca Werner (Specialized), David Knox (Santos) and Skye-Lee Armstrong (Giant)
(Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)

Bec Werner (Specialized Women SA) has caused a major upset in the opening round of the Santos Women's Cup, taking Sunday's race with GreenEdge-AIS not represented on the podium. Grace Sulzberger (Jayco-AIS) finished second with Skye-Lee Armstrong (Sutherland Shire CC) flying solo in third.

The win was a great result for the Specialized Women SA team, on their home turf in Adelaide and also given the race receives the highest exposure of the three-race series, run in the lead up to the Down Under Classic.

The win marked Werner's first in the Specialized Women SA colours, and continued her impressive run of form having won silver in the under 23 women's road race at the Mars Cycling Australia Road National Championships last weekend.

There appeared to be some confusion on the final lap, perhaps due to cowbells in the crowd with Werner allowed to continue almost uncontested to the finish line

"I was a bit confused because I wasn't meant to be our girl who was up there, it just kind of happened like that," Werner said of the finish sprint. "I think there was maybe a little bit of confusion in the bunch with whether it was the last lap or not. I heard them say it I was just trying to close the gap for our sprinter Chloe [Hosking] and she wasn't there so I kept going and thankfully it worked out for us."

GreenEdge-AIS had been on the offensive the majority of the race with the high-profile outfit's biggest names, including Judith Arndt, spending time either attacking off the front or driving the bunch. Prior to the start of the race, GreenEdge-AIS were overwhelming favourites given their run of hot form which began with the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic on January 1.

"The numbers were definitely against us with all of GreenEdge out with some of the international riders as well and then the Jayco girls," Werner admitted. "We talked last night about our race plan and we weren't going to be scared, we were going to attack them and put them on the back front. I think we did that really well."

Each of the 17 laps featured race a new leader in a highly attacking 40 minute event. Several breaks attempted to stay away but none were ultimately successful or able to get more than a six second advantage.

On the bell lap, Werner fought her way to a front group of six which included her teammate Loren Rowney, Sulzberger, Gracie Elvin (Jayco-AIS), Shara Gillow and Amanda Spratt. The group was caught on the bend heading into the finishing straight with Werner able to maintain her lead and will wear the overall blue jersey heading into race two in Prospect on Monday evening

Werner said that while she would "love to" maintain her overall lead, she instead pointed to her teammates as potential victors for the final two races.

"We've got Chloe who's one of the best sprinters," she explained. "Liz [Phillipou] our manager and Loren Rowney who's signed by Specilized-lululemon as well so we've got a strong group of riders so I think we can do anything."

Results

#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)
2Grace Sulzberger (Jayco AIS)
3Skye-Lee Armstrong (NSW)
4Nicole Whitburn (Vic)
5Jessie MacLean (GreenEdge-AIS)
6Melissa Hoskins (GreenEdge-AIS)
7Shara Gillow (GreenEdge-AIS)
8Chloe Hosking (Specialized Women SA)
9Jessica Mundy (SA)
10Judith Arndt (GreenEdge-AIS)
11Taryn Heather (SA)
12Amanda Spratt (GreenEdge-AIS)
13Loren Rowney (Specialized Women SA)
14Amy Bradley (Vic)
15Alexis Barnes (QLD)
16Alexis Rhodes (GreenEdge-AIS)
17Tanya Matthewson (Vic)
18Tiffany Cromwell (GreenEdge-AIS)
19Gracie Elvin (Jayco AIS)
20Lauretta Hanson (Vic)
21Chloe McIntosh (Vic)
22Samantha Fromentin (SA)
23Loes Gunewijk (GreenEdge-AIS)
24Stephanie Ives (Vic)
25Carly Williams (Vic)
26Elizabeth Phillipou (Specialized SA)
27Alexandra Carle (Jayco AIS)
28Rowena Fry (GreenEdge-AIS)
31Annette Edmondson (SA)
32Eliza Bergin (Vic)
DNFCarla Franson (SA)
DNFStacey Riedel (SA)
DNFMadeleine Cardillo (Vic)
DNFKelly Gray (WA)
DNFAnna Kauffmann (WA)
DNSSinead Noonan (Jayco AIS)
DNSRebecca Domange (Vic)
DNSNicole McNamara (Vic)

Overall
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rebecca Werner (Specialized SA)10pts
2Grace Sulzberger (Jayco AIS)9
3Skye-Lee Armstrong (NSW)8
4Nicole Whitburn (Vic)7
5Jessie MacLean (GreenEdge-AIS)6
6Melissa Hoskins (GreenEdge-AIS)5
7Shara Gillow (GreenEdge-AIS)4
8Chloe Hosking (Specialized Women SA)3
9Jessica Mundy (SA)2
10Judith Arndt (GreenEdge-AIS)1

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