July 07, 2005
Stage 6 wrapup
A sure sign that anything can happen in the Tour, as Fassa Bortolo's Lorenzo Bertucci takes his first pro win in a big way, taking Stage 6 of the 2005 Tour de France.
Bertucci and T-Mobile's Alexandre Vinokourov were the only riders to escape a fall by Française des Jeux's Christophe Mengin, the last survivor of a very long breakaway, who was looking for a hometown win.
Rabobank's Karsten Kroon takes over the polka-dot jersey from teammate Erik Dekker, after winning some mountain points over today's 4th Category climbs.
Otherwise, no big changes in the jersey competitions, although Vinokourov made up 19 seconds in the yellow jersey competition by finishing a few seconds up on the group, and taking a 12-second time bonus for finishing 2nd on the day.
Vinokourov believes he would have taken the stage win if not for the fall. As for the one-two punch, T-Mobile's Jan Ullrich said Vinokourov's attack:
"...will give Lance something to chew on, knowing that at the end of such a stage, he was forced to chase down someone like Vino. At least he now knows that we´re here, and that our morale is good as we go into the mountains.
"Armstrong was watching Jan exactly at the moment that Vino attacked. That shows the tactical hand we have to play with in the coming stages."
As Mengin crashed in the final corner, Vino slowed to avoid him and the Italian dove inside and held off Vinokourov for the win, kissing his wedding ring at the finish to dedicate the win to his new bride Valentina. "I'm really very happy to win my first professional race here at the Tour. I'm a passista-veloce so finishes like this suit me well."
passista-veloce: a sprinter
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Sounds like a bit of wishful thinking on the part of the Tmob boys. Why they even say such things is beyond me. At the very least it just gives Lance more bulletin board material--as if he needs it. Mark it up to another Tmob tactical mistake. Won't be the last we see from these guys.
Posted by: Trée at Jul 7, 2005 10:00:40 PM
That's assuming that Discovery's mountain pace doesn't drop Ullrich like a match burning your fingers, as has transpired in the last 2 tours.
Posted by: Jason O. at Jul 8, 2005 10:42:06 AM
You can bet Armstrong won't be doing much Ullrich-watching once they get into the big mountains ... unless his climbing bike has been fitted with a rear-view mirror, that is.
Vino is the only one of the T-Mo boys with any chance of a win on GC - but unless the pinkos quickly decide to ride for a single leader, they're going to wind up with a "two-pronged attack" for 2nd or 3rd place.
Posted by: EWM at Jul 8, 2005 2:09:14 PM