Shara Gillow Podiums at EnergieWacht Time TrialSat 6 Apr 2013
Shara Gillow time trialed onto the EnergieWacht Tour stage podium during the morning stage of the Dutch tour’s double day of racing. The Australian National Time Trial Champion broke a run of bad luck with her third place finish in Winsum.
“The last two days, I haven’t had the best luck,” admitted Gillow. “Things weren’t very good for me. Yesterday, I spent 100-odd kilometres trying to chase back on after a mechanical and crash, so today felt pretty good to get onto the podium.”
Gillow covered the 21.1 kilometre effort in 29’15”, slightly more than 1' behind stage winner and new race leader Ellen Van Dijk (Specialized-lululemon) who stopped the clock at 28’12”. Lisa Brennauer was second quickest in 29’03”, 12” ahead of Gillow.
“The course is fairly flat and not very technical,” said Gillow. “It was one big loop. I didn’t divide the effort into pieces. It’s only 21 kilometres, so I guess I thought I could ride the whole thing hard – go all out for the entire effort. I didn’t really pace myself. I might have paid for that a little bit in the end.”
Loes Gunnewijk managed 29’19” to slot into fourth place on the stage. She was rewarded with a jump up the overall results from fifth place into third. Gunnewijk is 1’18” behind new race leader Van Dijk and just 11” behind Van Dijk’s Specialized-lululemon teammate Lisa Brennauer. Only 23” separates former race leader, Wild, from Loes.
“Obviously with two teammates at the head of the race, things are looking good for Specialized-lululemon,” said Sport Director Martin Barras. “They can afford to be very defensive. Kirsten Wild is now 15” behind Loes, and she will obviously be looking at making up time with bonus seconds. How can we exploit this? – that’s the question we need to answer.”
Three road stages remain in the five day race. The first of the three is an evening road race alongside the canal in Appingedam.
“The current situation makes our job more difficult,” explained Barras. “We’ll need the remaining stages to be hard, and we’ll need to make them even harder by racing aggressively. Already this afternoon, we’ll get a bit of that. We can expect a lot of wind as the race runs along the canal.”
“We’re in a position where we need to take chances and create opportunities as they present themselves over the next three stages,” Barras continued. “Now that we’re running a place on the overall, we need to be even more aggressive.”
While Barras may not yet know exactly what sort of opportunities he hopes his team will create and take, he’s very clear about one thing.
“We didn’t come here to finish second,” he said. “We will risk finishing 12th in order to see if we can win first place.”