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Cooke wins again

Geelong
Nicole Cooke (Univega Pro Cycling Team)
© Brian Farrell

Stage 1 – 8km TT 27/06/06

1. Nicole Cooke (GBr) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce 12m 48s
2. Maryline Salvetat (Fra) Interregions Grand S @9″
3. Elisabeth Chevanne Brunel (Fra) Les Pruneaux D’Agen @32″

A dominant start for Nicole and her Univega-Raleigh-Lifeforce team. Besides Nicole taking the leaders yellow jersey the 5 strong team placed 4th, 9th, 10th and 17th in the individual time trial to provide a good platform for the remaining stages.

Stage 2a – 70.8km 28/06/06

1. Alexandra Rannou (Fra) Les Pruneaux D’Agen 1h 49m 18s
2. Sarah Grab (Ger) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce st
3. Tatsiana Sharakova (Rus) USc Chirio @19″

A good start to the day for Univega-Raleigh-Lifeforce with Sarah Grab taking second in a 2 up break and Nicole finishing 6th as the next group came in 19 seconds back to maintain her overall lead.

Stage 2b – 63km 28/06/06

1. Joanne Kiesanowski (NZ) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce 1h 18m 41s
2. Nicole Cooke (GBr) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce st
3. Nikki Egyed (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope @1″

A heavy thunderstorm couldn’t dampen Univega-Raleigh-Lifeforce spirits as Nicole led out the teams sprinter Joanne Kiesanowski for the win. 2nd place for Nicole maintains her substantial overall lead.

Stage 3 – 100.9km 29/06/06

1. Emma Rickards (Aus) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce 1h 22m 25s
2. Maryline Salvetat (Fra) Interregions Grand S @2″
3. Nikki Egyed (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope @2″

Nicole Cooke (GBr) 5th
Univega Raleigh Lifeforce @3″

Univega-Raleigh-Lifeforce continued too dominate on a day with a tough head wind. Emma Rickards took the teams third stage win out of four, and Nicole extended her overall lead to 56 seconds.

Stage 4 – 115km 30/06/06

1. Nicole Cooke (GBr) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce 3h 35m 9s
2. Maryline Salvetat (Fra) Interregions Grand S @4’04”
3. Laura Morfin (Mex) USC Chirio @11’18”

Nicole broke away after 5km of the 22k climb up the legendary Mont Ventoux. Her solo up the Giant of Provence put her in the lead in the Mountains Competition and after the descent and run into the finish she established a huge overall lead, also taking over the green points jersey!

Stage 5 – 114.4km 01/07/06

1. Elisabeth Chevanne Brunel (Fra) Les Pruneaux D’Agen 3h 05m 16s
2. Joanne Kiesanowski (NZ) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce st
3. Maryline Salvetat (Fra) Interregions Grand S st

On the final day Univega-Raleigh-Lifeforce just missed out on a fifth stage as Nicole led out Joanne Kiesanowski in a sprint. They just missed out but there was no change in the overall standings leaving Nicole a very emphatic winner overall.

General Classification after Stage 5 07/07/06

1. Nicole Cooke (GBr) Univega Raleigh Lifeforce 13h 23m 42s
2. Maryline Salvetat (Fra) Interregions Grand S @6’27”
3. Tatsiana Sharakova (Rus) USc Chirio @13’25”

As well as taking the the Overall leaders yellow jersey, Nicole also won the Points classification.

Links: Nicole Cooke’s Site

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