The third and final stage of the Ladies’ Tour of Qatar competed in windy conditions, ended in a bunched sprint. Like on day 1, Kirsten WIld powered to victory. But the star of the day was Germany’s Judith Arndt who managed to keep control of her leader’s Golden jersey and wins this 2012 edition of the event.
At the start of the third and final stage of the Ladies’ Tour of Qatar, new Golden jersey Judith Arndt (GRW) only had a slim 2" lead over compatriot and rival Trixi Worrack (SLU). In other words it would be a fierce battle between the two Germans.
Again, strong winds would make this final stage a very demanding one. While the pack was struggling against a head-wind all along the first half of the race, courageous Kendall Ryan (USA) broke away after 14 kilometres. Her advantage rapidly grew from 25" at km 15 to a maximum 3’25 at km 20.
The first bonus sprint (km 27) was claimed by Ryan while Wild (NED) was the fastest of the peloton ahead of Arndt gaining and extra bonus second overall. The gap had then dropped down to 2’. Just two kilometres later, Ryan only had a 1’ lead. The American was finally caught at km 40.
A pack remained bunched for the second intermediate sprint (km 42) won by Arndt ahead of Wild and Gunnewijk. As the riders headed west and the wind blew sideways, the peloton broke up into several groups and 16 favourites gathered at the front. The leaders enjoyed a maximum 30" advantage at km 49 before being caught back at km 57.
The peloton remained packed all the way to the finish at a very fast pace due to the tailwind all the way to the finish. Decision was to be made after a bunched sprint. Like on day 1, Kirsten Wild (NED) prooved she was the fastest of all, capturing her second success this year. The dutch rider beat her compatriots Ellen Van Dijk (SLU) and Adriana Visser (SKI) to the line.
Fourth of the stage, Judith Arndt kept her Golden jersey and wins this fourth edition of the Ladies’ Tour of Qatar. In the final GC, the German wins the event with a 6" lead over Worrack and 2’06 over Wild who claims the Silver jersey for points. The best young rider of the race remains Chloé Hosking while team Specialized-Lululemon finishes best team.