Van Vleuten's stunning solo ride secures gold

Omnisport
She made the break with around two-thirds of the race still to go but there was no catching flying Dutchwoman Annemiek van Vleuten.
She made the break with around two-thirds of the race still to go but there was no catching flying Dutchwoman Annemiek van Vleuten.

Annemiek van Vleuten's stunning solo ride secured UCI World Championships gold in the women's road race on Saturday.

Van Vleuten made her move with over 100 kilometres to go but nobody could reel the 36-year-old back in as she finished 2 minutes, 15 seconds ahead of her nearest rival in Harrogate.

Her decision to break away with around two-thirds of the race still remaining was a bold one but it paid dividends in the form of a first world road title. 

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Last year's winner Anna van der Breggen took second to make it a Dutch one-two, while Amanda Spratt also dropped down a spot from 2018 to complete the podium.

There was also a fourth-placed finish for time-trial champion Chloe Dygert-Owen.

Van Vleuten's brave strategy transformed the pattern of the race as the peloton struggled to come up with a strategy to narrow the gap.

With back-to-back time trial world titles under her belt, Van Vleuten's winning mentality was evident in the sheer determination of her ride over the 149.4km route in Yorkshire.

She took advantage of a disjointed chasing pack to open up a lead that proved unassailable, affording her the equivalent of a victory lap over the closing stages.

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