Vos solos to second road world championship

The stage was set and Marianne Vos (Netherlands) didn't disappoint as she romped to victory in the women's road race at the world championships on home roads in Valkenburg.

After a remarkable and frustrating run of five successive silver medals, Vos ended her Worlds hoodoo in considerable style by attacking on the final climb of the Cauberg to win by 10 seconds from Rachel Neylan (Australia), while Elisa Longo Borghini (Italy) came home a further 8 seconds back in third.

It was Vos' first world road title since she took the rainbow jersey as a neo-professional in Salzburg in 2006. In the intervening period, the 25-year-old has asserted her pre-eminence as the outstanding rider of her generation across a variety of disciplines, but had repeatedly fallen just short on the set-piece occasion.

In winning a thrilling road race at the London 2012 Olympics in August, however, Vos had perhaps already shaken off her fear of events, and even before she took flight on the Cauberg, there was an air of inevitability about her win.

"I knew how having the jersey felt from a long time ago, but I almost forgot after 2006," a delighted Vos said afterwards. "But this year has been very special, after the Olympics I focused really hard on this. I felt good and knew I had to profit from that."

The climb of the Cauberg was a heaving cavern of orange-clad supporters on Saturday afternoon, and Vos was always likely to forge her win on its slopes. Indeed, such was her comfort on the climb that she used it no fewer than three times as a platform to dictate the outcome of the race.

With just over two laps to go, Vos found herself corralled in the main peloton, 30 seconds behind a leading group that contained Rossella Ratto (Italy), Amber Neben (USA), Neylan (Australia), Charlotte Becker (Germany) and Vos' fellow countrywoman Anna Van der Breggen.

Sensing that the race for the rainbow jersey was in danger of unfolding without her, Vos simply took matters into her own hands, darting clear of the peloton on the Cauberg with only Longo Borghini for company. The Italo-Dutch pairing made the juncture with the leaders shortly afterwards, and with that firepower added to the mix there was little chance that they would be reeled back.

On the penultimate time up the Cauberg, Vos decided to unfurl another attack. Though lacking the ferocity of her move on the previous lap, the acceleration had the desired effect as Vos whittled down the leading group and issued a stark warning as to how the rest of the afternoon would unfold.

Only Longo Borghini and then Neylan could initially respond, while Van der Breggen and Neben would latch back on a kilometre later, but even at this stage there was a sense that the die had already been cast. Both Vos and Van der Breggen were particularly vigorous in their turns at the front of the winning break, and their intention must surely have been to draw the sting out of the rivals rather than keep their distance ahead of a peloton that was already over two minutes behind.

At the final reckoning up the Cauberg, the impressions of the previous time up the climb were confirmed. Just as the road kicked up its steepest point, Vos accelerated with venom and her move scattered the group across the hillside. Neylan edged away from Longo Borghini, while Neben and Van der Breggen watched their medal hopes slowly recede.

Up ahead, Vos was all but dancing up the Cauberg, pulling further and further away with every pedal stroke. The false flat over the top had proved fatal to the late attackers in the under-23 race in the morning, but Vos was operating on another plane.

As Vos zoomed up the finishing straight, she even had time to snatch a Dutch flag from a supporter on the roadside and freewheel across the line. After six long years, an aberration was finally put to rights.

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Full Results
1Marianne Vos (Netherlands)3:14:29
2Rachel Neylan (Australia)0:00:10
3Elisa Longo Borghini (Italy)0:00:18
4Amber Neben (United States of America)0:00:33
5Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands)0:00:55
6Rossella Ratto (Italy)0:03:40
7Linda Villumsen (New Zealand)0:04:37
8Judith Arndt (Germany)
9Emma Johansson (Sweden)
10Paulina Brzezna-Bentkowska (Poland)
11Annemiek Van Vleuten (Netherlands)
12Ashleigh Moolman (South Africa)
13Joelle Numainville (Canada)
14Alena Amialiusik (Belarus)
15Emma Pooley (Great Britain)
16Evelyn Stevens (United States of America)
17Jessie Daams (Belgium)
18Liesbet De Vocht (Belgium)
19Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany)0:04:49
20Giorgia Bronzini (Italy)
21Leah Kirchmann (Canada)
22Inga Cilvinaite (Lithuania)
23Ceclie Gotaas Johnsen (Norway)
24Oxana Kozonchuk (Russian Federation)
25Yevgeniya Vysotska (Ukraine)
26Ivanna Borovichenko (Ukraine)
27Larisa Pankova (Russian Federation)
28Anna Sanchis Chafer (Spain)
29Carmen Small (United States of America)
30Karol-Ann Canuel (Canada)
31Tiffany Cromwell (Australia)0:04:52
32Tatiana Antoshina (Russian Federation)0:04:54
33Megan Guarnier (United States of America)
34Charlotte Becker (Germany)
35Eneritz Iturriagaechevarria Mazaga (Spain)0:04:58
36Clemilda Fernandes Silva (Brazil)
37Edwige Pitel (France)
38Elena Cecchini (Italy)
39Sharon Laws (Great Britain)
40Sofie De Vuyst (Belgium)
41Kelly Druyts (Belgium)
42Martina Ruzickova (Czech Republic)
43Annelies Van Doorslaer (Belgium)
44Kristin McGrath (United States of America)
45Claudia Hausler (Germany)
46Aleksandra Burchenkova (Russian Federation)
47Pauline Ferrand Prevot (France)0:05:03
48Lucinda Brand (Netherlands)
49Olena Sharga (Ukraine)
50Cherise Taylor (South Africa)
51Lise Nostvold (Norway)
52Malgorzta Jasinska (Poland)
53Shara Gillow (Australia)
54Ane Santesteban Gonzalez (Spain)
55Amelie Rivat (France)
56Katazina Sosna (Lithuania)
57Trixi Worrack (Germany)
58Andrea Dvorak (United States of America)
59Olivia Dillon (Ireland)0:05:39
60Nicole Cooke (Great Britain)
61Petra Zrimsek (Slovenia)
62Jennifer Hohl (Switzerland)
63Edita Janeliunaite (Lithuania)
64Francesca Cauz (Italy)
65Claudia Veronica Leal Balderas (Mexico)
66Nikki Harris (Great Britain)
67Veronique Labonte (Canada)
68Amanda Spratt (Australia)
69Adrie Visser (Netherlands)0:05:41
70Ina-Yoko Teutenberg (Germany)
71Jessie MacLean (Australia)0:06:04
72Gracie Elvin (Australia)
73Marta Tagliaferro (Italy)
74Noemi Cantele (Italy)
75Hanna Nilsson (Sweden)
76Evelyn Arys (Belgium)
77Kirsten Wild (Netherlands)
78Sandrine Bideau (France)0:06:22
79Tatiana Guderzo (Italy)0:07:01
80Lilibeth Chacon Garcia (Venezuela)0:08:24
HDLex Albrecht (Canada)
HDMiriam Bjørnsrud (Norway)
DNFRomy Kasper (Germany)
DNFLoren Rowney (Australia)
DNFSiobhan Horgan (Ireland)
DNFAleksandra Sosenko (Lithuania)
DNFSerika Guluma Ortiz (Colombia)
DNFDoris Schweizer (Switzerland)
DNFDaniela Pintarelli (Austria)
DNFLise Olivier (South Africa)
DNFAlexandra Chekina (Russian Federation)
DNFMartina Ritter (Austria)
DNFMayuko Hagiwara (Japan)
DNFMaria Briceno (Venezuela)
DNFRimma Luchshenko (Kazakhstan)
DNFAudrey Cordon (France)
DNFSara Mustonen (Sweden)
DNFJessica Kihlbom (Sweden)
DNFPatricia Schwager (Switzerland)
DNFSophie Creux (France)
DNFJoanna Van De Winkel (South Africa)
DNFKatie Colclough (Great Britain)
DNFShelley Olds (United States of America)
DNFEmilia Fahlin (Sweden)
DNFEllen Van Dijk (Netherlands)
DNFLoes Gunnewijk (Netherlands)
DNFEmily Collins (New Zealand)
DNFEugenia Bujak (Poland)
DNFOlena Pavlukhina (Ukraine)
DNFAnna Nahirna (Ukraine)
DNFSemra Yetis (Turkey)
DNFRotem Gafinovitz (Israel)
DNFMia Radotic (Croatia)
DNFMayra Del Rocio Rocha (Mexico)
DNFKathryn Bertine (Saint Kitts and Nevis)
DNFKaat Hannes (Belgium)
DNFRobyn De Groot (South Africa)
DNFAn-Li Pretorius (South Africa)
DNFSari Saarelainen (Finland)
DNFPolona Batagelj (Slovenia)
DNFRoberta Monaldini (San Marino)
DNFIsabelle Soderberg (Sweden)
DNFLenore Pipes (Guam)
DNFJulia Martisova (Russian Federation)
DNFAndrea Graus (Austria)
DNFYennifer Cesar (Venezuela)
DNFEmma Crum (New Zealand)
DNFKate Chilcott (New Zealand)
DNFMartina Sablikova (Czech Republic)
DNFAgne Silinyte (Lithuania)
DNFUrsa Pintar (Slovenia)
DNFPavlina Sulcova (Czech Republic)

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