Double Herald Sun Tour winner Lucy Kennedy climbed to second place on stage three of the Santos Festival of Cycling as overall race leader Sarah Gigante (Australia) claimed her second stage victory in succession.
The short stage always looked set to end in a battle up the famous Willunga Hill and so it proved. Numerous attempts to break away came and went over the 48.8km stage, but the peloton hit the lower slopes intact.
It wasn’t long before Gigante launched her attack and the 20-year-old quickly opened up a sizeable advantage over the thinning peloton. Kennedy settled into her own rhythm behind and saw off the challenge of Nicole Frain (Sydney Uni Staminade) to claim second place and move into second in the general classification.
“It was a really short, sharp stage today and up until the hill it was fairly uneventful, there quite a few attempts at little breaks but never really though too many of them would get away.
“The team looked after me really well, and I basically hadn’t seen a breath of wind until the bottom of the climb, so it was just game on from there.
“I really wanted to have a race with her [Gigante] today but when she went I just couldn’t respond to that and had to try and diesel my way up and just never saw her again, she was the strongest rider today.”
Santos Festival of Cycling – Stage 3:
1. Sarah Gigante (Australia) 1:17:34
2. Lucy Kennedy (Team BikeExchange) +01:00
3. Nicole Frain (Sydney Uni Staminade) +01:36
Santos Festival of Cycling – GC Stage 3:
1. Sarah Gigante (Australia) 6:04:48
2. Lucy Kennedy (Team BikeExchange) +03:11
3. Ruby Roseman-Gannon (ARA Pro-Racing Sunshine Coast) +03:43
Photo Courtesy of Tour Down Under.