By the time Sunday morning had come, after consuming the famous Chicken Parmigiana that has led me through every stage in Coleraine, and a restless night’s sleep, I was prepared to take the yellow jersey and back to back titles. I felt strong, was climbing well, but had 20 other girls to worry about. Once again I went head to head with Kathy for QOM bonuses, where she ran me off the road…twice…and after some malicious words, I took out the QOM classification. Christine Foster and Simone Spikers were the aggressors today, but with desperate time bonuses still on offer, a bunch kick was bound to prevail. Nic played the early role in our lead out, before Tess took over her duties. A look left, and a look right down the finishing straight, showed that Kathy was out of contention, so we were able to hand Tess stage victory, obtain critical bonus seconds, and claim the yellow jersey by 2 seconds!
What would prepare me better for a criterium than a beef pastie? Well almost anything would have been more appropriate, but they looked SO good, and must have been made of something special… The opening minutes of our 18km criterium saw Tess trying for a breakaway. Even with a stage win, she needed to escape Kathy by 22seconds to move to second on GC. So after claiming the intermediate sprint, I continued on the attack, taking 6 girls with me, and leaving Kathy to chase. Nic and I worked hard to extend the margin, with the gap at 16seconds with 2kms remaining! We assured Tess the stage win, and waited nervously as the seconds counted down to Kathy’s finish. The verdict? 24 seconds! A successful tour for the team! The VIS claiming three 3 stage wins, the QOM classification and 1-2 in the overall classification! Now I can look ahead to Baw Baw, and merely hope that Frank Cipriano doesn’t beat me, as he’s one up on me after a four second margin separated us in the time trial in Coleraine!!
Results: Tour of Coleraine Stage 1-4, QOM & GC