Alice Barnes narrowly missed the podium on day three of the AJ Bell Women’s Tour after finishing fourth in the individual time trial stage. The British national time trial champion was just four seconds behind second place and three seconds behind third. Teammate Hannah also put in a top ten performance on the circuit around Atherstone.
“I’m quite happy with the ride,” said Alice. “I actually felt really good during my warm-up. Maybe I was sitting at the start line too long because unfortunately, I didn’t feel as good immediately off the start. I tried to push deep and I had our Sport Director Lars (Teutenberg) talking a lot on the radio which was helpful. It was a technical course so it was really a mix between going deep or over the limit, then trying to use some sections to recover but I never really felt smooth in the first part.”
Alice continued, “I could go deeper in the second half of the race. In hindsight, I could have gained some seconds in a few of the places on the course which would have at least got me on the podium, even if the winner was miles ahead. A podium would have been great but I feel good going into the next stages.”
Alice will aim to defend her national ITT title next weekend but first says there are opportunities for her to move up on her current eighth place on the overall standings.
“Today gives me confidence for next week’s national championships which will be close to double the length we had today, and I’m sure there will be some close racing. But first I’m here and I hope I can get some time bonuses in the sprint finishes in the next stages that will move me up on GC.”
The stage was won by Demi Vollering (SDW) who moves into the leader’s jersey. Ella Harris had a strong performance finishing in fifteenth place, with Elise Chabbey eighteenth. Elise maintains her lead in the Skoda Queen of the Mountains classification ahead of tomorrow’s fourth stage in Southend-on-Sea.
HOW TO FOLLOW
Stage 4 | Shoeburyness – Southend-on-Sea | 117.8km | 11:15BST
Stage 5 | Colchester – Clacton | 95.4km | 11:50BST
Stage 6 | Haverhill – Felixstowe | 155.3km | 11:15BST