Brown rules in Aguilar de Campoo
September 9 th 2022 - 21:06 [GMT + 2]
Grace Brown (FDJ Suez Futuroscope) claimed victory on Friday at the end of stage 3 of the Ceratizit Challenge by La Vuelta 22, finishing in Aguilar de Campoo. The Australian star took the best of Elise Chabbey (Canyon Sram) in the final metres of a short and intense day of racing from Camargo. Annemiek van Vleuten (Movistar) finished with the main bunch, 8 seconds down from the leading duo, and retained the leader’s red jersey.
The day began with several attempts to break away, especially after the peloton overcame the first uphill challenge of the day, the Alto de Hijas (cat. 3). Aude Biannic (Movistar), Sandra Alonso (Ceratizit - WNT) and Caroline Andersson (Valcar Travel & Service) were the first riders to shake up the race on the way to Hoces de Bárcenas (cat. 2). A group of 18 riders with big names such as such as Sara Martín (Movistar), Emma Norsgaard (Movistar), Marlen Reusser (SD Worx) and Laura Asencio (Ceratizit-WNT) managed to open a gap. The peloton did not allow their advantage to go above half a minute and they got back together at the foot of the climb.
Mavi García (UAE Team ADQ) opened more battles on the first ramps of the long ascent. The Spanish champion kept attacking and Katarzyna Niewiadoma, the Polish star from Canyon-Sram, responded. Grace Brown launched her own move in the last 25 kilometres with Amber Kraak (Jumbo Visma). At that point, SD Worx worked to reel in the attackers. The race leader Annemiek van Vleuten was also controlling through her teammate Arlenis Sierra.
Brown again, accompanied by Chabbey, eventually opened enough of a gap to battle it out in the final metres. The FDJ cyclist was the fastest of the duo while the rest of the favorites trailed by 8 seconds. 'Miek' remains at the head of the general classification with a gap of 1’55’’ to Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) and 2’24’’ to Demi Vollering (SD Worx). The Dutchwoman also leads the points classification, while Lucinda Brand (Trek-Segafredo) retains the jersey for best climber. Mavi García was the most combative rider after her great stage.
On Saturday, the peloton will face the longest day of the race with a 160-kilometre route. The riders will leave Palencia to head for Segovia, with a stretch of 1,800 meters of sterrato only 9 kilometres from the end, before the ascent to the Aqueduct and the Plaza Mayor de Segovia (cat. 4).