July 13, 2004
Stage 9 underway
Eurosport's commentator and CSC's Jens Voigt both believe we'll see a successful breakway today:
CSC's JENS VOIGT on stage nine: "It's a very hard stage. I've already done it few times in the Tour du Milousin. It's going up and down, it's not little hills but long climbs and it's the start of difficulties. It's going to be difficult for sprinters' teams, and I think it's going to be very hard for the team 'La Boulangere' to retain the yellow jersey."
AG2R's Estonian sprinter Jaan Kirsipuu abandoned the Tour this morning on the road, before the day's first climb.
Richard Virenque took the first King of the Mountains points of the day, ahead of Iban Mayo and Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano.
Robbie McEwen took 3rd place points at the first intermediate sprint, behind 2 riders in a breakaway then 90 seconds up on the peloton.
That pair, Filippo Simeoni of Domina Vacanze and Inigo Landaluze of Euskaltel-Euskadi have spent much of the day out front, but are now only a few seconds ahead of a closing peloton.
Late stage crash has caught Kurt Arvesen of CSC, Santos Gonzalez of Phonak, and a few others.
Drug tests this morning for the riders on US Postal, CSC, Quick Step, and AG2R. Everyone was cleared to ride.
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» http://www.travisswicegood.com/tdf2004/tdf2004/2004/07/13/title_4 from Travis Swicegood's Tour De France 2004
Could Stage 9 be more difficult than everyone thinks? Jens Voigt certainly thinks so. The live coverage at Eurosport is showing that Postal has been under attack as they try to keep the peleton generally together. [Read More]
Tracked on Jul 13, 2004 9:00:34 AM