July 05, 2009

Stage 2: Cavendish strikes first for green

Mark Cavendish delivered the goods Sunday, easily outsprinting the field in Brignoles.

Cavendish won four stages in last year's Tour, but didn't win the overall green jersey because he dropped out to concentrate on the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. That didn't work out so well. Cavendish has said his goals for the Tour are just to win a stage and make it to Paris, but wearing the green jersey tonight, he's got to be thinking bigger.

The victory was Cav's 15th this season, and continues the Columbia team's amazing run -- they won 6 stages of the Tour de Suisse (with 5 different riders) in June.

Garmin-Slipstream's Tyler Farrar played the sprint just right, finding and holding Cavendish's wheel, but just couldn't find the terminal velocity to stay with the Manx Express. Romain Feillu was 3rd, Thor Hushovd 4th, and Bbox's Yukiya Arashiro, one of two Japanese riders making the start this year, was 5th.

No sign of Tom Boonen, who may have been caught by a crash in the final kilometer, and was 174th on the stage.

For much of the day, four riders: Jussi Veikkanen of FdJeux; Stef Clement of Rabobank; Stéphane Auge of Cofidis; and Cyril Dessel of AG2R, rode alone, and Veikkanen collected enough King of the Mountain points to take over the lead in that competition. That makes him the first Finn ever to wear the polka-dots in the Tour.

Stage 2 Top Ten:
1) Mark Cavendish, Team Columbia-HTC, 4:30:02
2) Tyler Farrar, Garmin-Slipstream, same time
3) Romain Feillu, Agritubel, s.t.
4) Thor Hushovd, Cervelo Test Team, s.t.
5) Yukiya Arashiro, Bbox Bouygues Telecom, s.t.
6) Gerald Ciolek, Team Milram, s.t.
7) William Bonnet, Bbox Bouygues Telecom, s.t.
8) Nicolas Roche, AG2R La Mondiale, s.t.
9) Koen de Kort, Skil-Shimano, s.t.
10) Lloyd Mondory, AG2R La Mondiale, s.t.

General Classification, after Stage 2:
1) Fabian Cancellara, Team Saxo Bank, 4:49:34
2) Alberto Contador, Astana, at :18
3) Bradley Wiggins, Garmin-Slipstream, at :19
4) Andreas Klöden, Astana, at :22
5) Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, at :23
6) Levi Leipheimer, Astana, at :30
7) Roman Kreuziger, Liquigas, at :32
8) Tony Martin, Team Columbia-HTC, at :33
9) Vincenzo Nibali, Liquigas, at :37
10) Lance Armstrong, Astana, at :40


VeloNews | Cavendish wins second stage; Cancellara keeps lead

Posted by Frank Steele on July 5, 2009 in 2009 Stage 2, Alberto Contador, Andreas Klöden, Bradley Wiggins, Cadel Evans, Lance Armstrong, Levi Leipheimer, Mark Cavendish, Romain Feillu, Stage results, Tom Boonen, Top Stories, Tour de France 2009 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 18, 2008

Manx cat pounces again: Cavendish takes 4th stage win

Team Columbia's Mark Cavendish continues to dominate the sprints of this year's Tour, today riding away from the field to take his 4th stage win of the 2008 Tour.

It was clearly a day for the sprinters, but former French champion Florent Brard and Milram's Belgian track star Niki Terpstra spent most of the day in a breakaway that took top points at all the day's intermediate climbs and sprints.

Milram, Liquigas and Columbia powered the peloton in the final kilometers, but the orderly leadout trains tangled up in the last 1000 meters, leaving a classic field sprint.

Silence-Lotto's Robbie McEwen, who has been largely invisible so far this year, marked the Manxman's wheel in the final 200 meters, but just couldn't ramp up the horsepower to get by Cavendish. It's the 6th career stage win for Cavendish, just 22.

Top 10, Stage 13:
1. Mark Cavendish, Columbia, Great Britain, in 4:25:42
2. Robbie McEwen, Silence-Lotto, Australia, same time
3. Romain Feillu, Agritubel, France, s.t.
4. Heinrich Haussler, Gerolsteiner, Germany, s.t.
5. Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain, s.t.
6. Thor Hushovd, Credit Agricole, Norway, s.t.
7. Leonardo Duque, Cofidis, Colombia, s.t.
8. Erik Zabel, Milram, Germany, s.t.
9. Julian Dean, Garmin-Chipotle, New Zealand, s.t.
10. Sebastian Chavanel, Française des Jeux, France, s.t.

Freire will extend his gap on Thor Hushovd in the green jersey race, while Cavendish moves into a tie with Hushovd at 2nd.

Niki Terpstra takes the aggressive rider red number for today's stage.

The overall is unchanged, as well.

General Classification, after Stage 13:
1. Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, Australia, in 56:48:47
2. Fränk Schleck, CSC-Saxo Bank, Luxembourg, @ :01
3. Christian Vande Velde, Garmin-Chipotle, USA, @ :38
4. Bernhard Kohl, Gerolsteiner, Germany, @ :46
5. Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, @ :57
6. Carlos Sastre, CSC-Saxo Bank, Span, @ 1:28
7. Kim Kirchen, Columbia, Luxembourg, @ 1:56
8. Vladimir Efimkin, AG2R-La Mondiale, Russia, @ 2:32
9. Mikel Astarloza, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Spain, @ 3:51
10. Vincenzo Nibali, Liquigas, Italy, @ 4:18

Posted by Frank Steele on July 18, 2008 in 2008 Stage 13, Erik Zabel, Mark Cavendish, Oscar Freire, Robbie McEwen, Romain Feillu, Thor Hushovd, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 07, 2008

Dumoulin takes Stage 3, Feillu in yellow

France earned a stage win and a yellow jersey, as a 4-man breakaway initiated by Garmin-Chipotle's Will Frischkorn held off the sprinters on the run into Nantes.

The break went out almost from the first kilometer, and was helped by a late stage accident that cost possible GC contenders Riccardo Ricco and Denis Menchov more than 30 seconds to Alejandro Valverde, Cadel Evans, and other overall contenders.

In the final kilometer, Samuel Dumoulin was first to attack, matched by Frischkorn, then Romain Feillu countered, and rode straight past the pair. Dumoulin was able to pull Feillu back, and Frischkorn just couldn't quite catch the French speedster.

Robbie McEwen led in the field, mere inches ahead of Erik Zabel, then Oscar Freire.

Feillu takes over the race lead, followed by Paolo Longo Borghini and Frischkorn. Feillu is the first Frenchman in yellow since Cyril Dessel in 2006. His Agritubel team is at the Tour as a wildcard.

Stage Top 10:
1) Samuel Dumoulin, Cofidis
2) Will Frischkorn, Garmin-Chipotle, same time
3) Roman Feillu, Agritubel, s.t.
4) Paolo Longo Borghini, Barloworld, at :14
5) Robbie McEwen, Silence-Lotto, at 2:03
6) Erik Zabel, Milram, same time
7) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, s.t.
8) Thor Hushovd, Credit Agricole, s.t.
9) Robert Förster, Gerolsteiner, s.t
10) Mark Cavendish, Team Columbia, s.t.

General Classification, Stage 3
1) Romain Feillu, Agritubel, in 13:27:05
2) Paolo Longo Borghini, Barloworld, @ :35
3) Frischkorn, Garmin-Chipotle, @ 1:42
4) Alejandro Valverde, Caisse d'Epargne, @ 1:45
5) Kim Kirchen, Team Columbia, @ 1:46
6) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, same time
7) Jerome Pineau, Bouygues Telecom, s.t.
8) David Millar, Garmin-Chipotle, s.t.
9) Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, s.t.
10) Filippo Pozzato, Liquigas, s.t.

These finishing positions determine start order for tomorrow's 29-kilometer individual time trial. Denis Menchov and Riccardo Ricco got caught on the wrong side of the late-stage crash, and rolled in 38 seconds behind the main field. As a result, they'll start around 50 riders from the end, and won't have as many intermediate time splits for reference.

Kim Kirchen holds the green jersey. Feillu holds the white jersey in addition to the yellow, but it will be worn by Andy Schleck of CSC.

Frischkorn gets two days in the most agressive rider's red race number, since there is no award during the time trial.

Out of the Tour: Saunier Duval's Angel Gomez, injured in a mid-stage accident with CSC's Nicki Sørensen.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 7, 2008 in 2008 Stage 3, Barloworld, Garmin-Chipotle, Romain Feillu, Samuel Dumoulin, Top Stories, Will Frischkorn | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 13, 2007

Stage 6: Boonen gets his groove back

Tom Boonen's reputation was suffering in this year's Tour, as he finished second to his leadout man Gert Steegmans in Stage 2, and couldn't quite close the deal in the other field sprints. With Thor Hushovd and Robbie McEwen nursing injuries, today was the last opportunity for Boonen to take a stage win until Wednesday's Stage 10.

In an all-hands sprint into Bourg-en-Bresse, Boonen outkicked Rabobank's Oscar Freire and yesterday's green jersey, Erik Zabel, to retake the green jersey. Barloworld's Robbie Hunter jumped a little too soon, and '07 Tour sprint revelation Romain Feilleu was coming on strong at the line after waiting too long, but Boonen timed it just right.

Only two riders left the shelter of the peloton today. Bradley Wiggins of Cofidis attacked after 2 kilometers and rode alone for 190 kilometers/115 miles, and at one point was the virtual race leader with a 17:00 gap to the field. Andrey Grivko of Milram briefly tried to join Wiggins, but quickly returned to the pack. It was clear that the sprinters had marked this stage on their race bible, as they pulled Wiggins back within 2 minutes and let him dangle, finally making the capture with only 7 kilometers/4.5 miles to ride.

Top 15 (all same time)
1) Tom Boonen, Quick Step, Belgium
2) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain
3) Erik Zabel, Milram, Germany
4) Sébastien Chavanel, Française des Jeux, France
5) Thor Hushovd, Credit Agricole, Norway
6) Daniele Bennati, Lampre, Italy
7) Robert Förster, Gerolsteiner, Germany
8) Robbie Hunter, Barloworld, South Africa
9) Romain Feillu, Agritubel, France
10) Murilo Fischer, Liquigas, Brazil
11) Francisco Ventoso, Saunier Duval, Spain
12) Jérôme Pineau, Bouygues Telecom, France
13) Robbie McEwen, Predictor-Lotto, Australia
14) Danilo Napolitano, Lampre, Italy
15) Geraint Thomas, Barloworld, Great Britain

Boonen retakes the green jersey.

In the overall, Freire gains enough bonus time to move ahead of George Hincapie, up into 5th overall. Gusev holds white, Chavanel holds the polka-dots, and Brad Wiggins gets the red race numbers (“most combative rider”) for tomorrow. A lot of riders on the list below won't be on the list below tomorrow night.

Overall standings after Stage 6:
1) Fabian Cancellara, CSC, Switzerland, in 29:49:55
2) Andreas Klöden, Astana, Germany, at :33
3) Filippo Pozzato, Liquigas, Italy, at :35
4) David Millar, Saunier Duval, Great Britain, at :41
5) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain, at :43
6) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, USA, at :43
7) Vladimir Gusev, Discovery Channel, Russia, at :45
8) Vladimir Karpets, Caisse d'Epargne, Russia, at :46
9) Erik Zabel, Milram, Germany, at :48
10) Mikel Astarloza, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Spain, at :49

Posted by Frank Steele on July 13, 2007 in 2007 Stage 6, Alexandre Vinokourov, Andreas Klöden, Bradley Wiggins, David Millar, Erik Zabel, Filippo Pozzato, George Hincapie, Oscar Freire, Romain Feillu, Tom Boonen, Top Stories, Vladimir Karpets | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 09, 2007

Stage 2: Steegmans leads self out for win

The story of the day is a late-stage crash, which took out a number of key riders with about 2 kms/1.25 miles to ride. It appeared a Milram rider pulled out of his pedal, slid out on the narrow road, and took a number of riders with him. Yellow jersey Fabian Cancellara went down hard, and riders filtered in for several minutes after the day's winners.

Most of the sprint specialists were positioned in front of the wreckage, including Stage 1 winner Robbie McEwen, Tom Boonen, Erik Zabel, Oscar Freire, and Robbie Hunter. Quick Step had Tom Boonen's leadout underway before the crash, and they followed through almost to perfection. The team asked Steegmans, Boonen's final draft, to stay on the front longer than normal because of a finishing hill. Boonen then had trouble getting around his big Belgian teammate, and Steegmans led Boonen across the line for a Quick Step, and Belgian, 1-2 on the day.

Afterward, Steegmans said if Boonen let him win, “it's the best present I have ever had,” Steegmans said.

“Anyway the important thing is we were first and second. It's my biggest win and at the best possible place and I won my first race as a child just 200m from this finishing line. I was overjoyed at the end.”

Top 10
1) Gert Steegmans, Quick Step-Innergetic, Belgium
2) Tom Boonen, Quick Step-Innergetic, Belgium, same time
3) Fillippo Pozzato, Liquigas, Italy, s.t.
4) Robbie Hunter, Barloworld, South Africa, s.t.
5) Romain Feillu, Agritubel, France, s.t.
6) Robbie McEwen, Predictor-Lotto, Australia, s.t.
7) Erik Zabel, Team Milram, Germany, s.t.
8) Heinrich Haussler, Gerolsteiner, Germany, s.t.
9) Oscar Freire, Spain, Rabobank, s.t.
10) Sebastien Chavanel, Française des Jeux, s.t.

UCI rules neutralize the effect of late crashes by giving everyone held up by the crash the same time as the winner, so there's no significant change in the overall standings.

Overall standings after Stage 2:
1) Fabian Cancellara, Team CSC, Switzerland
2) Andreas Klöden, Astana, Germany
3) David Millar, Saunier Duval-Prodir, Great Britain
4) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, USA
5) Bradley Wiggins, Cofidis, Great Britain

Boonen takes over the green jersey and moves up to 7th in the GC based on bonus time awarded for his 2nd on the stage.

The Guardian reports that Cancellara's wrist is a “minor injury,” but that Lampre's Daniele Bennati was taken to a local hospital after injuring his hip in the crash. Over at ThePaceline.com (free reg. req.), Cathy Mehl reports George Hincapie appears to be all right after lacerating his knee in the crash, and Tomas Vaitkus may have broken his thumb.


SportingLife.com | Steegmans prevails as crash mars finish

Posted by Frank Steele on July 9, 2007 in Andreas Klöden, Bradley Wiggins, David Millar, Erik Zabel, Fabian Cancellara, George Hincapie, Oscar Freire, Robbie Hunter, Robbie McEwen, Romain Feillu, Tom Boonen, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

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 (7)

July 02, 2007

AG2R, Agritubel Tour squads confirmed

VeloNews | Tour de France 2007: French teams dreaming big

AG2R's Christophe Moreau hopes to continue his recent success with a high placing at the Tour. Moreau won the Dauphiné Libéré, and yesterday took the French national road title with a long solo attack that left one opponent to say “There was nothing to do against him.”

    AG2R 2007 Tour de France roster:
  • José Luis Arrieta (Spain)
  • Sylvain Calzati (France)
  • Cyril Dessel (France)
  • Martin Elmiger (Switzerland)
  • John Gadret (France)
  • Simon Gerrans (Australia)
  • Stéphane Goubert (France)
  • Christophe Moreau (France)
  • Ludovic Turpin (France)

Meanwhile, wild card Agritubel will try to duplicate its success last year, when Juan Miguel Mercado took Stage 10 to Pau.

    Agritubel 2007 Tour de France roster:
  • Freddy Bichot (France)
  • Moise Dueñas (Spain)
  • Romain Feillu (France)
  • Eduardo Gonzalo (Spain)
  • Cedric Herve (France)
  • Nicolas Jalabert (France)
  • Juan Miguel Mercado (Spain)
  • Benoit Salmon (France)
  • Nicolas Vogondy (France)

Posted by Frank Steele on July 2, 2007 in 2007 team rosters, Christophe Moreau, Romain Feillu, Tour de France 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack