Chloe Hosking (Mercedez Benz Team) won the 119km Masterton street circuit after a great sprint finish that saw her out manouevre the favourite to win, Rochelle Gilmore from the Australian National Team. Gilmore explained how her leadout team was concentrating on the train made by the MB Cycles Team when Hosking flew past, "When it came to the finish, my team had done a brilliant job to get me there and I was feeling fresh" said Gilmore, "Everything was looking good until Chloe hit us from behind. She’s got a fantastic kick and it was just a little bit too much for me at the finish."
Gilmore had previously explained that she was in New Zealand to win today’s one day race, "that is my objective" she shared after her win earlier in the week. Hosking said she was waiting for Gilmore to fly past her, but today that didn’t happen. "To be a sprinter you have to be very stubborn and strong-minded. I didn’t go into this race thinking I was already beaten" said Hosking, "I went in thinking `if my stars align I can definitely get her’ and luckily enough they did today."
Hosking and Gilmore have been challenging each other for the sprint wins all week, starting at the NZCT Women’s Tour of New Zealand. Gilmore took first place in the first and second stages, with Hosking close behind in second each time.
Hosking expained how she has been chasing the win from Gilmore since the beginning of the year. "I’m mixing it up [this tour]. I usually wait to go about the 150m mark when Gilmore or her leadout person goes" shared Hosking.
At stage one Hosking started her sprint at the 500m mark calling it "the longest sprint of my life", on stage two she held off her till the 250m mark. In today’s sprint Hosking was out in front at the 250m mark, "I think I might have to change my tactics" remarked a thrilled Hosking, "this seems to be working for me". Hosking says, "this win has given me a lot of confidence and hopefully I’ll ride on that for a little while".
Hosking’s victory is even more surprising considering her Mercedes Benz Team was a composite team rather than a team that were used to working together. She did not have the advantage of well rehearsed lead out strategies like other sprinters had. Leading up to the event the Mercedes Benz team didn’t have a manager till kiwi Stephen Elden stepped in and offered to help out.
Hosking, like many of the international cyclists, was billeted out to local families for the duration of these two events. Hosking was billetted by Masterton Mayor Garry Daniell, who Hosking says cooks the best spaghetti bolognese.
Hosking is heading back home to ACT Australia for a month before travelling to Europe to join a small Dutch pro cycling team "Team Moving Ladies" for the European summer. When asked what plans she has in the future, Hosking replied, "I want to go to University, but I don’t know, cycling might be a career option now". Today’s win gives Hosking 80 UCI points, but the young cyclist is too new to top level cycling to fully understand what that means. "I think I’ll go home and read up about it" she said.
Today’s race was well supported by the locals who came out to watch the fourteen lap circuit. One young couple, Louise and Matt, on Perry Street had their blow up kangaroo out on the street along with beer cans, a bbq and signs of encouragement that changed each lap.
The race kept interesting for the spectators as different teams had their turn out in front of the peloton. Mid way through the race two kiwi’s, Jo Kiesanowski (NZ National Team) and Rachel Mercer (Cyclosport Team) thrilled the crowds by increasing their lead out to 40s before the peloton decided to reel them in.
- Chloe HOSKING (U23) Mercedes Benz Team 3:04:09
- Rochelle GILMORE Australia National Team ST
- Gina GRAIN MB Cycles Team – Australia ST
- Davina SUMMERS Handy Rentals Team ST
- Joanne KIESANOWSKI NZCT NZ National Team ST
- Ruth CORSET Champions System Cycling Team ST
- Xin LIU Giant Pro Cycling Team- China ST
- Lang MENG Giant Pro Cycling Team- China ST
- Peta MULLENS (U23) Australia National Team ST
- Clare VLAHOPOULOS R&R Team ST
Full Results and more race results from Roadcycling.co.nz
Photos ? Roadcycling.co.nz