June 16, 2005
Chris Horner takes Tour de Suisse Stage 6! Michael Rogers takes race lead
Horner and Nabili
AFP photo from VeloNews.com.
Race leader Jan Ullrich finished 1:48 back, so Australia's Michael Rogers, who finished at 1:14, takes over the race lead.
Horner rode with neopro Nibali, who snapped free of the peloton on the day's last climb, looking very strong. Apparently, Nibali wasn't quite as strong as the force of his escape made him look, and Horner couldn't get him to pull through on the climb. Eventually, harsh words were exchanged, with Horner making the universal "come on by" gesture used for wheelsuckers everywhere. When Nibali wouldn't, or couldn't, produce a strong pull, Horner dropped him hard.
Horner's victory is his first in Europe, after three unsuccessful years with Française des Jeux from 1997-1999. Over the years, he has won pretty much every US race but the USPro championships.
Horner said he was able to make his break work because he was three minutes down on the GC leaders, and couldn't see any of them spending the effort to try to pull back a rider that far back. Now that he's sitting 6th overall, at 1:31, the escapes aren't likely to come so easy.
The win will strengthen Horner's case to make Saunier Duval-Prodir's Tour de France team.
Friday looks like a final day for the sprinters before two mountain stages to close out the tour.
With a veteran's tactics and the heart of a rookie, American underdog Chris Horner (Saunier Duval - Prodir) picked up his first major European victory Thursday, crushing the competition in the mountainous sixth stage of the Tour of Switzerland.
"I'm sorry I don't know the names," Horner said when an Italian reporter asked about the several riders he had dropped on the final climb. "This is only my eighth - wait, my fifth - race in Europe."
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Chris Horner takes Tour de Suisse Stage 6! Michael Rogers takes race lead:
Eurosport was tough on JU....Was he holding back?
Posted by: Jason O. at Jun 16, 2005 1:13:22 PM
Gotta love the phrasing in the Eurosport article:
"Having shone in Sunday's individual time trial, the German T-Mobile leader showed that all is not fruity ahead of his assault on July's Tour de France."
Orange you glad for Eurosport's telling it like it is? Why, straight-shooting journalism like this is just plum refreshing, even if some of it gets a bit mangoed in translation. Sounds like Jan U. needs to apple-y himself in these final pre-Tour training weeks ... mainly, pear his weight back just a little bit more to help his climbing. Raisin his overall fitness level just that last little bit would surely have his fans going bananas come TdF time.
Posted by: EWM at Jun 16, 2005 5:28:46 PM
"Sounds like Jan U. "
LOL. Hell of a comparison.
Guy wins one and all the CH hatas have flipped ;-)
Posted by: matthew Wanderer at Jun 17, 2005 11:51:08 AM