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July 08, 2007

Stage 1: Rapid Robbie scratches for the win

Struck from behind while waiting for a crash to clear with about 20 kms/12.5 miles to ride, Robbie McEwen went over the bars, injuring his wrist. Adding insult, he then had to organize a chase to get back to the peloton, and only hooked back up with less than 5 miles to ride.

But it apparently takes more than that to slow the fastest man on two wheels, who struck like lightning in the stage's last 200 meters, whipping the other sprinters' Canterbury tails. From at least 10 places back, McEwen catapulted past Tom Boonen and Thor Hushovd and won with a bike length to spare.

It was McEwen's 12th career Tour stage win, ahead of Thor Hushovd and Tom Boonen.

Top 10:
1) Robbie McEwen, Predictor-Lotto, Australia, 4:39:01
2) Thor Hushovd, Credit Agricole, Norway, same time
3) Tom Boonen, Quick Step, Belgium, s.t.
4) Sebastien Chavanel, Française des Jeux, France, s.t.
3) Romain Feillu, Agritubel, France, s.t.
6) Robert Förster, Gerolsteiner, Germany, s.t.
7) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain, s.t.
8) Marcus Burghardt, T-Mobile, Germany, s.t.
9) Francisco Ventoso, Saunier Duval-Prodir, s.t.
10) Tomas Vaitkus, Discovery Channel, Lithuania, s.t.

McEwen said he landed on his knee, hand, and wrist in the fall. “At first, I couldn't bend my leg,” he said. “The guys rode like a team time trial to get me back in the bunch” for 13 or 15 kilometers, finally catching up in the last 5 miles of the stage.

McEwen takes over the green jersey, David Millar takes the cheap King of the Mountains, and Vladimir Gusev holds the white jersey.

Overall standings after Stage 1:
1) Fabian Cancellara, Team CSC, Switzerland 4:47:51
2) Andreas Kloden, Astana, Germany, @ :13
3) David Millar, Saunier Duval-Prodir, Great Britain, @ :21
4) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, USA, @ :23
5) Brad Wiggins, Cofidis, Great Britain, @ :23
6) Vladimir Gusev, Discovery Channel, Russia, @ :25
7) Vladimir Karpets, Caisse d'Epargne, Russia, @ :26
8) Thor Hushovd, Credit Agricole, Norway, @ :29
9) Alexandre Vinokourov, Astana, Kazakhstan, @ :30
10) Thomas Dekker, Rabobank, Netherlands, @ :31

There are 188 riders left, after Eduardo Gonzalo of Agritubel crashed through the rear window of a Caisse d'Epargne team car, and had to leave the race.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 8, 2007 in Andreas Klöden, Bradley Wiggins, David Millar, George Hincapie, Oscar Freire, Robbie McEwen, Romain Feillu, Thor Hushovd, Top Stories, Vladimir Karpets | Permalink

Comments

Last year, Landis amazed the world. Today, McEwen amazed the world. Looks like TDF still has some serious issues to deal with...

Posted by: at Jul 8, 2007 4:23:34 PM

Hey, anonymous, have you watched the Tour before? McEwen's victory, while certainly one of his most memorable, was just the kind he has frequently won before.

This was his 12th stage victory in his career, and as in many of those, he won today by just being flat-out faster than anyone else over a stretch of 100-150 meters. It's one of the oldest ways to win a bike race.

Posted by: TdFblog's Frank at Jul 8, 2007 4:32:15 PM

Based on the last 100-150 meters, it was no suprise that McEwen took the victory. What happened 20 km earlier and the last 100-150 meters combined, is what makes it amazing. McEwen proved the cycling world wrong there...anything is still possible in cycling!

Posted by: at Jul 8, 2007 4:57:03 PM

I love watching Robbie sprint, It's just pure speed and power at it's finest.

Posted by: RonV at Jul 8, 2007 5:29:15 PM

It's great that all the TDF riders are forced to sign an agreement of DNA testing, so genetic doping could possibly be revealed. But unfortunately it'll probably take years before DNA testing becomes a mandatory for every stage winner.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_doping

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Repoxygen

Posted by: at Jul 8, 2007 6:58:07 PM

What a dunb Quote- "Last year, Landis amazed the world. Today, McEwen amazed the world. Looks like TDF still has some serious issues to deal with... "

Have you ever riden a bicycle or raced? I doubt it. You have serious issues with your capacity to understand this event..... Idiot

Posted by: Mat Butterworth at Jul 9, 2007 12:35:24 AM

To quote various diplomatic people behind the scenes in TDF: "McEwen must have been hit with an amazing adrenaline kick when he crashed to be able to take the victory home like that". So, 1+1 still equals 3 in TDF?

Posted by: at Jul 9, 2007 11:24:44 AM

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