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July 14, 2003

Tour Today: Bourg d'Oisans - Gap

A stage with interesting geography: a first category climb, an haute categorie climb, a long descent into a valley, a 2nd category climb and a 3rd category climb. The hard climbs are front-loaded, so it will be interesting to see whether anyone tries or succeeds to generate a break on the early, harder climbs, with the risk that the peloton (or much of it) can build a pursuit during the 60 or so kms down from the Col d'Izoard. It seems more likely that a rider looking to move up in the King of the Mountains competition might try to get away over the big two climbs.

Four abandons during the stage yesterday:
Pierre Bourquenoud (Jean Delatour)
Antonio Tauler (Kelme)
Ignacio Gutierrez (Kelme team leader)
Nicola Loda (Fassa Bortolo)

One rider was eliminated for finishing outside the time limit:
Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel)

That leaves 179 riders to start Stage 9, although there are rumors that at least Glberto Simoni will not start today's stage.

Yellow jersey - Lance Armstrong
Polka-dot jersey - Richard Virenque
Green jersey - Baden Cooke
White jersey - Dennis Menchov

Posted by Frank Steele on July 14, 2003 in Stage profiles | Permalink

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