Annalisa Cucinotta celebrates an excellent, if unexpected victory on the opening stage of the 2015 Ladies Tour of Qatar
RaboLiv riders soak in the Qatari sun and scenery
Friendly bikers helped with race control
The peloton rolled past the gleaming towers of Doha's Al Corniche Street
Desert crosswinds were notably absent from stage one. The peloton's battle with the elements would have to wait for another day.
The intermediate sprints were hotly contested, with Shelly Olds (Bigla) claiming a combined eight-second bonus for her first and second place finishes.
Xiu Jie Jiang bravely broke away from the peloton, but on the long, straight desert roads, she was rarely out of sight of the peloton.
Racing was quiet on the opening day but punctures and crashes meant the stage was not without incident.
The peloton completed the opening hour of racing in 43 minutes, indicative of a high tempo and calm conditions.
A world class field assembled in Doha, including Lizzie Armitstead (Boels Dolman), Tiffany Cromwell (Velocio SRAM), and Emma Johannson (Orica-AIS).
The desert races have come to characterise the peloton's February programme. The Ladies Tour of Qatar will be held for the sixth time this year.