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July 26, 2003

Stage 19: David Millar takes the TT, Armstrong confirmed in yellow

The battle royal between Armstrong and Ullrich didn't come off quite as expected, as a midcourse crash by Jan Ullrich led to tentative cornering, and a much slower pace by the German.

Britain's David Millar won the stage in 54:05, for the 2nd-fastest time trial in Tour history. Tyler Freaking Hamilton was 2nd, at 54:14. Combined with the finishes of Mayo and Zubeldia, Hamilton's time trial moves him up into 4th on the overall classification.

1) David Millar (Cofidis) 54:05.14
2) Tyler Hamilton (Team CSC) 54:14.27
3) Armstrong (US Postal) 54:19.66
4) Ullrich (Team Bianchi) 54:30.45
5) Laszlo Bodrogi (QuickStep) 54:31.73

Armstrong will be up by about 1:15 at the start of the final stage tomorrow. He's almost certain to win the Tour.

Overall:

1) Armstrong (US Postal)
2) Jan Ullrich (Team Bianchi) @ 1:16
3) Alexandre Vinokourov (Telekom) @ 4:29
4) Tyler Hamilton (Team CSC) @ 6:32
5) Haimar Zubeldia (Euskaltel-Euskadi) @ 7:06
6) Iban Mayo (Euskaltel-Euskadi) @ 7:21
7) Ivan Basso (Fassa Bortolo) @ 10:12
8) Christophe Moreau (Credit Agricole) @ 12:43
9) Carlos Sastre (Team CSC) @ 18:49
10) Francisco Mancebo (iBanesto.com) @ 19:30

Posted by Frank Steele on July 26, 2003 in Stage results | Permalink

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» http://lightanddark.typepad.com/blog/2003/07/well_the_velone.html from Light & Dark
Well the VeloNews commentator called it: 4:25 p.m. News from the road, shows that Armstrong is gaining time on Ullrich's time. The big question is how these men will handle the closing 7km... The danger is traffic roundabouts, with that slippery paint ... [Read More]

Tracked on Jul 26, 2003 11:16:54 AM

Comments

Millions of fans sat in front of their television sets eagerly awaiting the much hyped confrontation between Armstrong and Ullrich. We watched as the rain continued to fall too heavily for our comfort. What will these conditions present to make the outcome even more unpredictable than it already was? We winced as riders fell on the tricky, wet curves of town streets, as dual screen coverage covered the progress of the two main protaganists for the ultimate prize. Jan had nothing to lose and much to gain and he pressed the pace hard, even being uncomfortably pressed by his team car. Lance and Jan started three minutes apart, with the defending champion starting last and with the advantage of knowing Ullrich's split times, making it possible to adjust his pace accordingly. The two men were amazingly racing at virtually the same speed until Jan took the shocking spill on a treacherously wet corner, one that had taken others out before. He was luckily assisted by the last soft barrier on that curve. Of course, Lance got the information of Jan's fall and took every precaution on the corners thereafter, while trying to make up time on the much less dangerous straight. With his team car still pressing the pace (Jan even waving the car off as following too close for his comfort) Jan did his best to keep the damage of a lost 11 seconds to a minimum. Lance held his pace while carefully negotiating the last of the course. He was willing to forfeit the win in order to finish upright and ended with an addtional precious seconds to pad his lead. The race was both climactic and anticlamactic but the final result was sure to please Armstrong fans. You have to know how Ullrich fans felt. The last question remaining unanswered is whether Team Bianchi has any tricks left up its collective sleeve. Has Jan Ullrich actually conceded the one title he wants so much to win again after coming so close? As an avid Armstrong fan, I know I won't breathe easily until the last kilometer has been raced.

Posted by: Marcel Perez at Jul 26, 2003 1:28:10 PM

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