Hosking triumphant on stage 1 of Tour Down Under

Australian moves into leader’s jersey following fifth win of the season

6 months ago by Tom Soladay

All eyes were on the peloton at the Santos Women’s Tour Down Under on Thursday, anxiously awaiting the first UCI stage winner of the 2020 season. 

Building on what has been a fairytale start to her tenure on the team, Chloe Hosking followed Lotta Hentalla (Trek-Segafredo) out of the final corner and sprinted past with 200 meters to go, taking a dominant victory and moving into the overall leader’s ochre jersey. 

“It feels great,” said Hosking. “I’m trading one orange jersey for another. It’s my first race with the team and the girls were incredible. I’m really stoked I could give them a UCI win.

The win was Hosking’s fifth of the season after victories at the Australian criterium championships and Bay Crit Series earlier this month. In the team’s 14 year history, never before has a rider won a UCI race this early in the season. 

“I spoke this offseason about how I felt like the pressure was lifted when I signed for Rally Cycling and that’s always when I perform my best,” Hosking added.

The 116 km stage from Hahndorf to Macclesfield was expected to be a day for the sprinters but Brodie Chapman (FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope) nearly stole the show, building up an advantage of 2’25” over the peloton with only 20 km remaining.

With time winding down, Heidi Franz, Leigh Ann Ganzar, Sara Poidevin, and Krista Doebel-Hickok took to the front of the peloton to close the gap and keep Hosking out of danger.

“We knew we had to stay alert all day since we were committed to the sprint,” said Hosking. “I asked them to keep me out of trouble and get me into the technical section at 1.5 kilometers to go. They really executed the plan perfectly and I’m really proud of the girls.

When a reporter asked Hosking about taking the race lead into stage 2, she responded with a beautiful perspective –

I take it day by day. Let me savor my victory.

Stage 1 results
1 HOSKING Chloe Rally Cycling
2 HENTTALA Lotta Trek-Segafredo
3 RAYNOLDS Matilda Specialized Racing

Overall standings after stage 1
1 HOSKING Chloe Rally Cycling
2 HENTTALA Lotta Trek-Segafredo +4”
3 KIRCHMANN LEAH Team Sunweb +6”

Full results and photos to come!