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Australian Professional Cyclist

Lotto Ladies- back on the podium!


Last week I was 2nd in the UCI race in Cento Italy. Kim Schoonbaert was 3rd in Maarkedal Belgium and Grace Verbeke won the Mountains jersey in the UCI tour of Limousin, France.

Grand Prix de Cento Carnevale d’Europa Feminin was held on the 17th of July in 40 degree heat. The course in Cento Ferarra is a flat sprinters course with a total of 10m vertical ascent which is gained on the two bridges passing over the river. The race is 11 laps of a 10km circuit. There is a total of 10km’s of cobbled sections including the 500m’s into the finish- this tends to favour the older, stronger sprinters.

Lotto’s stronger riders; Vicki Whitelaw (AUS) and Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (Sth Africa) were the most active Lotto riders who worked hard to keep the race together for a sprint finish.

This year’s race results were; 1st: Giorgia Bronzini (Gauss) 2nd Rochelle Gilmore (Lotto) 3rd Monia Baccaille (Valdarno). This was the same podium as in 2009. The sprint was much closer this year; I look forward to a new result next year! Cento is a race that I really enjoy, even when it’s 40 degrees!


Kim Schoonbaert hit some top form one week after completing this year’s gruelling Giro d’Italia. On Wednesday the 21st of July Kim raced 90km in Maarkedal Belgium with 80 starters. Kim was the driving force of a 3 women break on a tough undulating circuit with a lot of wind. The race results were; 1st Nathalie Lamborelle (Luxembourg) 2nd Catherine Williamson (Team Fenix) 3rd Kim Schoonbaert (Lotto). The next group of four riders were 1min 36sec down; the peleton finished 4min 20sec down.

Lotto’s Grace Verbeke returned to Limousin, France on Thursday after taking the tour win last year. Grace rode strong on the first day (Thursday) to take the Mountains jersey, some time bonus sprints and 3rd in the stage, she was 2nd on GC leading into the ITT on day two. Grace didn’t have her best ITT in Limousin this year; she finished 6th 18 sec down, her GC position slipped to 5th. On day Three Grace increased her lead in the mountains jersey and finished 5th in the stage. On the final day (Sunday) Grace finished 6th and held her 5th position on GC. Grace again won the Mountains Jersey at the tour of Limousin.

Lotto Ladies; we’ve started our ramp up into the end of the season. Our next race is the Sweden World Cup TTT and RR.

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