Today’s stage out of Nannup to Greenbushes was quite difficult, according to a lot of the riders. An early break of 6, including Linfield, broke away just after the first climb up the Brockman Highway, and quickly distanced the bunch. Linfield was one of the first riders onto the move, and was joined by his compatriots. A couple of riders fell off the back in the descent into Maranup just before the penultimate Kindalee Hill.
As the riders were rounding the final couple of kilometers up into Greenbushes, Linfield made his move. Coming into the final corner with 200m to go, there was daylight between him and the chasing 4, and Linfield had enough time to salute the Greenbushes crowd before taking his team’s first win of the week. “The boys have only been together for 2 weeks before this race, so any result is a good result,” Linfield said at the finish.
In the women’s event, it was once again Holden dominating the rest of the field. Kimberly Wells led the attacks for the Australian outfit, starting 8km into the stage. After being caught 4km later, Lisen Hockings launched herself to a strong lead. With South Perth Rouleurs leading a strong chase, Emma Pooley capitalised on the increased momentum in the bunch and launched herself, bridging to Hockings.
On the final climb into Greenbushes, Grace Brown took off. Teammate Shannon Malseed followed shortly after, launching from the top of the climb with 500m to go. Emma Pooley got the win on the line, while Hockings finished with Pooley for 2nd, Brown 3rd 40 seconds behind and Malseed 4th about a minute back. “It was pretty hot out there today, and the final climb was brutal,” said Pooley, “but I’m just relieved that the day is done.”
Now that the stage recap is done for the day, here are my favourite photos from today!
Luke Durbridge was giving an interview to Cycliq before the stage today. Talked about his ambitions in 2018 (classics season), road safety, and Caleb Ewan.
Sabrina Stultiens also gave an interview to Cycliq, talking about the wildlife and the Australian roads.
Annemiek van Vleuten before today’s start. She had a good yarn with Jess Allen before getting ready for the stage.
Jess Allen just before rolling out today. An amazing person to talk to, and will always lend an ear to hear anything. Super humble about her own achievements, and loves talking up others (thanks for the thanks about CyclingTips today!).
Michael Freiberg before the start. Today, the who’s-who of the race got their early and rolled around for a bit before the stage, and chatted between each other.
Lisen Hockings, looking up at the right time. I stood there for a few minutes waiting for this shot. Absolutely in love with her jersey.
The King Kom Boys getting ready – as requested by Anjii Coleman!
The best sign on the route today. Crikey Cadel the Crocodile was up the road a bit further, 5km out from the finish in Greenbushes at the top of Kirralee Hill.
RIP Crikey Cadel.
Matt Keenan commentating the stage finish in his lycra from his morning Breakaway ride. We had a good yarn about his early career, uni life and cycling journalism. So knowledgeable, and a great inspiration for me and anyone else in the field.
Bradley Linfield took out the stage today. His name might sound familiar – he tore up the Junior Circuit back in 2011, beating riders such as Pierre Latour, Matej Mohoric, Magnus Cort and Alexey Vermuelen. He was supposed to be the next big thing before illness struck. He’s getting back on form now, and dominated today’s stage.
More Matt Keenan on the mic. He knows how to get the crowd going too.
Midland Alpha and Veris Development sprinting it out on the line for 6th place. Midland got up, and Tim Harvey claimed the Young Riders Jersey.
Pauliena Rooijakkers finishing up in Greenbushes.
Calling out Bernie Swart for the best celebration of the day – even though he didn’t win anything!
Some riders were just cruising over the line…
…and others, like good Marco here, watched the pain from the sidelines after finishing earlier.
A painful grimace from some of the riders truly told how harsh the weather and the final climb was.
Emma Pooley won the Women’s race. Holden went 1-2-3-4. Domination.
My favourite photo of the day. One of Jess Allen’s Joondalup Cycle City team mates sprinting for the line, as Jess peels off her lead out. True teamwork.
Annemiek celebrating one of her team mates sprinting to the line, after dropping off the pace. She helped her up the climbs, and let her take center stage as she sprinted to the line, cheering for her and getting the crowd into a whirl.
And, as Anouska Koster demonstrates here, refueling your body after a race is very important. I think she enjoyed that banana a lot.
And once the race was over, and the presentations done, some of the riders were itching to get back on the bikes and ride home. The pro’s congregated outside and led the people out, taking various routes back to Nannup.
Luke Durbridge, Rotem Gafinotivz, Jess Allen, Anouska Koster and Marianne Vos led this ride back, while some teams like Holden almost time trialled back home.
It was a great day out at Greenbushes. It’s great at these events to see the community being able to interact with the pro’s so intimately. It’s what cycling is about. And then once the day was done, everyone packed up and moved on, eager for tomorrow.
If you want to see more photos and content from this week, be sure to check out the Tour of Margaret River Facebook, Instagram, and of course my twitter. Tomorrow is the last day of racing, can’t wait to see who comes out on top!
If you would like to use my photos for anything, or would like full size images, please message me directly. Credit-wise, just leaving The Cycling Raven along side any photos you use will be greatly appreciated, and if you are feeling extra ambitious, drop a link by to the blog site – I’ll love you for it! Thanks so much!