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June 18, 2007

Proni wins at Tour de Suisse; Cancellara holds race lead

procycling | Tour de Suisse 3: Proni wins longest stage; Cancellara holds yellow

Proni - TdG '07
Alessandro Proni,
originally uploaded by Frank Steele.
Quick Step's Alessandro Proni took his first pro win on a big stage Monday, winning Stage 3 at the Tour of Switzerland.

Proni broke away along with Luis Pasamontes of Unibet.com and Daniel Navarro of Astana early in the Tour de Suisse's longest stage, and the trio stretched their advantage to 11 minutes. Near the base of the last climb, Proni shed his breakmates, with the peloton closing fast. Over the top, with about 10 kilometers to race, Proni led the field by 10 seconds, and held off the slashing field to take the day by 7 seconds, with Bouygues Telecom's Xavier Florencio 2nd and T-Mobile's Kim Kirchen 3rd.

“It's not only the biggest win of my career, it's the first win of my professional career,” Proni said. “I'm used to winning as an amateur but not as a pro. This is still hard for me to believe.”

Swiss race leader Fabian Cancellara was 1st Saturday in a TT, 3rd Sunday in a sprint, and 12th today in a mountain stage. David Zabriskie isn't the only CSC time trialist who's improving their overall skills:

“It's a very tough, very long stage,” Cancellara said. “But the yellow jersey was just too beautiful. I didn't want to give up. I think I've shown I've made a lot of progress and I'm no longer just a time trial specialist.”

Proni, racing in just his 2nd year as a pro, moves up to 2nd overall, 2 seconds back, with Kirchen 3rd at 14 seconds. Pre-race favorites are lurking 20 seconds and more back, including Vladimir Karpets, 9th at :21; Michael Rogers, 12th at :23; Chris Horner, 14th at :25; Damiano Cunego, 27th at :34; and Carlos Sastre, 33rd at :36.

Also:

cyclingnews.com | First pro win for Proni as race leader impresses once more | Results | Photo Gallery

VeloNews | Cancellara holds Swiss lead as Proni nails first mountain stage

Posted by Frank Steele on June 18, 2007 in Carlos Sastre, Chris Horner, Damiano Cunego, Michael Rogers, Tour de Suisse, Tour de Suisse 2007, Vladimir Karpets | Permalink

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