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The first Women’s World Tour race is a wrap. The Tour Down Under was the start of the season for our Australian rider Anya Louw who lined up for UniSA, the Australian national team, and Ally Wollaston who rode for the national team of New Zealand.

The race went off to a good start with the victory for Ally in the opening criterium where Anya came in seventh. The actual three-day stage was a mixed bag of terrain with the best shot at success for sprinter Ally in the opening stage. She managed to get a sixth place. 

The other two stages were very challenging with in both cases a tough hill in the final hour of the race. On stage two Ally managed to stay with the peloton for a long time. On the final day she lost a bit more time on the infamous Corkshrew Road. Ally finished 23rd in the overall classification and was fifth best young rider.

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Anya’s role was that of road captain for the national team, especially to help team leader Rachel Neylan who in the end managed a ninth place in the GC.

“The Tour Down Under has been a great race to begin the season with some intensity and hot stages,” Anya explained. “It was also great to race at home in Australia in front of Aussie fans!”

“I have been going into each stage with a clear objective to protect our GC riders, Anya continues. "With the weather being so hot I took care of hydration to keep them cool so we were in a good place for that final stage.

Today was the last and it was a good one. I did my job well as a domestique and covered large moves early, then I continued riding at the front and positioning our GC riders well in the final into the bottom of the climb,” she concludes. 

Anya finished the race in 57th place.

Contrary to Ally who stays down under to ride the national championships in New Zealand to defend her champion's jersey, Anya travel back to Europe to join the team at the training camp in Spain.