July 26, 2008

Schumacher takes 2nd TT as Sastre holds yellow

Team CSC has been the best-ranked team in the world for years, but has never taken the sport's biggest victory. Today, Carlos Sastre nailed down his first Grand Tour victory, and his team's first TdF win, with a 12th place in the longest time trial of the 2008 Tour.

Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher, who won the Stage 4 TT and has been active in attacks throughout the Tour, was the stage winner today, clocking a 1:03:50, again beating out world time trial champion Fabian Cancellara and Team Columbia's Kim Kirchen.

Cadel Evans of Silence-Lotto, widely expected to put serious time into Sastre, was unable to gap the Spaniard. At each time check, Sastre trailed Evans by less than 30 seconds, and Evans would finish in an unspectacular 7th on the stage, in 1:05:56. Combined with Bernhard Kohl's 1:06:11, Evans will move up to 2nd, with Kohl falling to 3rd. Kirchen climbs to 8th overall, while Garmin-Chipotle's Christian Vande Velde moved into the Top 5 overall.

Fränk Schleck had a rough day, finishing in 1:09:28 and getting caught by Sastre on the road, and falling to 6th overall.

Stage 20:
1. Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, Germany, 1:03:50
2. Fabian Cancellara, CSC-Saxo Bank, Switzerland, @ :21
3. Kim Kirchen, Team Columbia, Luxembourg, @ 1:01
4. Christian Vande Velde, Garmin-Chipotle, USA, @ 1:05
5. David Millar, Garmin-Chipotle, Great Britain, @ 1:37
6. Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, @ 1:55
7. Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, Australia, @ 2:05
8. Sebastian Lang, Gerolsteiner, Germany, @ 2:19
9. Bernhard Kohl, Gerolsteiner, Austria, @ 2:21
10. George Hincapie, Columbia, USA, @ 2:28

General Classification, after Stage 20:
1. Carlos Sastre, CSC-Saxo Bank, Spain, 84:01:00
2. Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, Australia, @ 1:05
3. Bernhard Kohl, Gerolsteiner, Austria, @ 1:20
4. Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, @ 2:00
5. Christian Vande Velde, Garmin-Chipotle, @ 3:12
6. Fränk Schleck, CSC-Saxo Bank, Luxembourg, @ 4:28
7. Samuel Sanchez, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Spain, @ 6:32
8. Kim Kirchen, Columbia, Luxembourg, @ 7:02
9. Alejandro Valverde, Caisse d'Epargne, Spain, @ 7:26
10. Tadej Valjavec, AG2R-La Mondiale, Slovakia, @ 9:12

Posted by Frank Steele on July 26, 2008 in Cadel Evans, Carlos Sastre, Christian Vande Velde, David Millar, Denis Menchov, Fabian Cancellara, Frank Schleck, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Stage 20 ITT underway

So the whole Tour comes down to today's TT. Silence-Lotto's Cadel Evans needs 1:34 to overtake yellow jersey Carlos Sastre for the race lead. Sastre will have the advantage of starting last and the mythic power of the maillot jaune on his side.

The battle's not only for the top spot today. Bernhard Kohl, Denis Menchov, Fränk Schleck, and Christian Vande Velde all hold hopes of making the podium, and will burn their last matches to try to get there today.

It's a pity they can't borrow matches from Wim Vansevenant and Bernhard Eisel, locked in a struggle to be the lanterne rouge of this year's Tour. Vansevenant was last-placed overall in the 2006 and 2007 Tours, and can become the first man ever to finish last in three Tours. Vansevenant took advantage of starting second on the TT and rolled in 2:00 behind Eisel to retake the cellar.

    Vs. Broadcaster Picks:
  • Hummer: Cadel Evans
  • Sherwen: Fabian Cancellara
  • Liggett: Christian Vande Velde
  • Roll: Kim Kirchen

They also discussed the overall podium: Roll wouldn't commit on placings, but tipped Menchov, Sastre, and Evans as the podium. Sherwen picks Sastre to win, Evans second, then Vande Velde; Liggett and Hummer both say Evans, then Sastre, then Menchov.

Danny Pate of Garmin-Chipotle was an early leader, finishing in 1:06:45, but his teammate David Millar and world TT champion Fabian Cancellara are on the road now, beating Pate's time at each Time Check.

At the finish, it's David Millar in 1:05:27, and Cancellara coming just behind, looks like he's got time to take the lead; he comes in with a 1:04:11.88! There are a lot of strong riders left to ride, but that's an impressive time that could easily take the day.

Out on course, Stefan Schumacher, who won Stage 4's 29-km time trial, equals Cancellara at TC1, loses 12 seconds at TC2, but finishes in 1:03:50.48. That's going to be tough to beat.

Vande Velde hits TC1 with the 4th best time, a 21:58. Menchov is next, it's a 21:52. Evans is coming , and puts up a 22:08. He's got a little more than a minute on Menchov on GC, but he's already lost 16 seconds of that. Now Bernhard Kohl comes through in a 22:06. Things are looking tight!

    Time Check 2
  • Fabian Cancellara 42:38
  • Stefan Schumacher 42:50
  • Kim Kirchen 43:35
  • Christian Vande Velde 43:35.13
  • Denis Menchov 43:46.50
  • Cadel Evans 44:08
  • Bernhard Kohl 44:11.77
  • Carlos Sastre 44:31.23
    Finishing times, riders of note:
  • Schumacher 1:03:50
  • Cancellara 1:04:12
  • Kim Kirchen 1:04:51
  • Christian Vande Velde, 1:04:55
  • Millar 1:05:27
  • Menchov 1:05:45
  • Cadel Evans 1:05:55.54
  • Bernhard Kohl 1:06:11.01
  • Hincapie 1:06:19
  • Carlos Sastre 1:06:24.79
  • Pate 1:06:45
  • Andy Schleck 1:07:52
  • Voeckler (last placed today) 1:15:09

Andy Schleck was caught by Bernhard Kohl, who started 3 minutes behind him, but held off Roman Kreuziger to hold on to his white jersey.

Cadel Evans never was able to put serious time into Carlos Sastre, finishing in 1:05:56. Sastre, for his part, reeled in teammate Fränk Schleck on the road, limiting his losses to Evans to only about 30 seconds, and Carlos Sastre and CSC will take the 2008 Tour de France.

As always, you can follow these updates and more at my Twitter feed.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 26, 2008 in Cadel Evans, Carlos Sastre, Christian Vande Velde, Fabian Cancellara, Stefan Schumacher | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 08, 2008

Schumacher grilled over '07 amphetamines positive

VeloNews | Schumacher has his own out-of-competition positive to explain

Journalists at the Tour wasted no time drawing parallels between a positive for amphetamines by Stefan Schumacher last October, and this year's out-of-competition positive for cocaine for Tom Boonen, who organizers barred from the Tour.

Schumacher explained simply:

“Our cases cannot be compared. Tom Boonen underwent a doping test. I didn't undergo a doping test. It was a police control when I was coming back from a disco,” said Schumacher as he sat in the race's yellow jersey.

“I don't have a problem with Boonen, he's a big champion and I don't know why he's not been invited to the Tour.”

Schumacher denied taking amphetamines, but they are present in some over-the-counter medications. His positive doesn't affect his career because, as he said, it was not measured in a sample drawn for doping controls. He also pointed out that the amount involved was “microscopic.”

Schumacher's Gerolsteiner team, looking for a new sponsor, sanctioned the rider at the time, and considers the issue closed.


The Canadian Press | Stefan Schumacher takes yellow jersey after winning Tour de France time trial

Posted by Frank Steele on July 8, 2008 in Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Schumacher takes the time trial!

Classics specialist Stefan Schumacher of Gerolsteiner turned in a head-turning performance to dominate the Stage 4 time trial at the Tour.

Schumacher was the only man to go under 36:00 on the day, finishing in 35:44. Team Columbia's Kim Kirchen just edged Garmin-Chipotle's David Millar, both in 36:02 to round out the stage podium.

Stage 4 results
1. Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, Germany, 35:44
2. Kim Kirchen, Columbia, Luxembourg, 36:02
3. David Millar, Garmin-Chipotle, Great Britain, 36:02.53
4. Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, Australia, 36:11
5. Fabian Cancellara, CSC-Saxo Bank, Switzerland, 36:17.22
6. Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, 36:18.01
7. Jens Voigt, CSC-Saxo Bank, Germany, 36:19
8. Christian Vande Velde, Garmin-Chipotle, USA, 36:21
9. George Hincapie, Columbia, USA, 36:25
10. Vincenzo Nibali, Liquigas, Italy, 36:31

Among the overall GC threats, Cadel Evans had the best day, finishing 4th on the day in 36:11, better than world champion Fabian Cancellara, who finished in 36:18. Denis Menchov showed he's here to win, only 7 seconds slower than Evans, while riding from a very early start, without benefit of many time checks.

Damian Cunego scored a 37:10, Alejandro Valverde a 37:18, while Carlos Sastre managed only a 37:27. Mauricio Soler, tipped by some as a longshot, must still be suffering from his accident on Stage 2, and was 161st on the day in 40:24, already 17:46 back of the race lead.

Overall standings mirror the stage finish, with Schumacher taking the overall race lead.

Overall after Stage 4:
1) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, Germany, in 14:04:41
2) Kim Kirchen, Columbia, Luxembourg, @ :12
3) David Millar, Garmin-Chipotle, Great Britain, @ :12
4) Cadel Evans, Silence-Lotto, Australia, @ :21
5) Fabian Cancellara, CSC-Saxo Bank, Switzerland, @ :33
6) Christian Vande Velde, Garmin-Chipotle, USA, @ :37
7) George Hincapie, Columbia, USA, @ :41
8) Thomas Lövkvist, Columbia, Sweden, @ :48
9) Vincenzo Nibali, Liquigas, Italy, @ :58
10) José Ivan Gutierrez, Caisse d'Epargne, Spain, @ 1:01
11) Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, @ 1:12

Columbia's Kirchen leads the green jersey competition, teammate Thomas Lövkvist leads in the white jersey competition, Thomas Voeckler holds the polka-dots, and Garmin-Chipotle extends its team competition lead, now leading Team Columbia.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 8, 2008 in 2008 Stage 4, Cadel Evans, Carlos Sastre, Christian Vande Velde, Damiano Cunego, David Millar, Denis Menchov, Fabian Cancellara, George Hincapie, Mauricio Soler, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 12, 2007

Stage 5: Pozzato powers through, but where's Vino?

Filippo Pozzato was as good as his word Thursday. The Liquigas classics specialist, winner at Milan-San Remo in 2006, told CyclingNews that Stage 5 was right for him, and he followed through with a magnificent sprint through a select group of power riders that survived over a hilly course.

Sylvain Chavanel of Cofidis built a healthy lead in the King of the Mountains competition by leading the race over 7 of the day's 8 climbs, in a break with FdJeux's Philippe Gilbert, Credit Agricole's William Bonnet, and break latecomer Gianpaolo Cheula of Barloworld.

Meanwhile, many of the race favorites spent time on the tarmac, most notably Alexandre Vinokourov, who finished 1:21 back on the day after spending almost 25 kilometers/16 miles chasing, first with 6 teammates (all but Klöden and Kashechkin) then behind the team car, and finally with the help of Tom Boonen and other dropped traffic he collected as he made up time. Astana's team competition lead (the yellow race numbers) was lost, as well, and Team CSC takes over the team lead.

As the field came to the finish, 74 riders were together, but most of the marquee sprinters were dropped, including Boonen, McEwen, and Thor Hushovd, so the classics specialists came to the fore, with Zabel and Freire initially looking strong, then Hincapie and Bennati closing them down, before Pozzato came on through the center for the win, less than a foot ahead of Rabobank's Oscar Freire.

Top 20 (all same time):
1) Filippo Pozzato, Liquigas, Italy
2) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain
3) Daniele Bennati, Lampre, Italy
4) Kim Kirchen, T-Mobile, Luxembourg
5) Erik Zabel, Milram, Germany
6) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, USA
7) Christian Moreni, Cofidis, Italy
8) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, Germany
9) Bram Tankink, Quick Step, Netherlands
10) Jérôme Pineau, Bouygues Telecom, France
11) Cadel Evans, Predictor-Lotto, Australia
12) Fabian Cancellara, CSC, Switzerland
13) Alejandro Valverde, Caisse d'Epargne, Spain
14) Chris Horner, Predictor-Lotto, USA
15) Fränk Schleck, CSC, Luxembourg
16) Martin Elmiger, AG2R, Switzerland
17) Linus Gerdemann, T-Mobile, Germany
18) Inigo Landaluze, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Spain
19) Michael Rogers, T-Mobile, Australia, T-Mobile, Australia
20) Laurent Lefevre, Bouygues Telecom, France

Once again, Fabian Cancellara did the yellow jersey proud, personally heading the peloton when Discovery's Yaroslav Popovych made a late break, and finishing 12th on a day when many expected him to lose the yellow jersey. As expected there was a heavy shuffle of the overall classification:

Overall standings after Stage 5
1) Fabian Cancellara, CSC, Switzerland, in 28:56
2) Andreas Klöden, Astana, Germany, @ :33
3) Filippo Pozzato, Liquigas, Italy, @ :35
4) David Millar, Saunier Duval, Great Britain, @ :41
5) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, USA, @ :43
6) Vladimir Gusev, Discovery Channel, Russia, @ :45
7) Vladimir Karpets, Caisse d'Epargne, Russia, @ :46
8) Mikel Atarloza, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Spain, @ :49
9) Thomas Dekker, Rabobank, Netherlands, @ :51
10) Benoît Vaugrenard, Française des Jeux, France, @ :52
11) José Ivan Gutierrez, Caisse d'Epargne, Spain, @ :53
12) Alberto Contador, Discovery Channel, Spain, @ :55
13) Oscar Freire, Rabobank, Spain, @ :55
14) Andrey Kashechkin, Astana, Kazakhstan, @ :55
15) Cadel Evans, Predictor-Lotto, Australia, @ :55
22) Levi Leipheimer, Discovery Channel, USA, @ 1:00
23) Denis Menchov, Rabobank, Russia, @ 1:00
25) Alejandro Valverde, Caisse d'Epargne, Spain, @ 1:03
81) Alexandre Vinokourov, Astana, Kazakhstan, @ 2:10

Zabel, the 6-time winner, is in the green jersey for the first time since 2002. Sylvain Chavanel of Cofidis takes the King of the Mountains jersey from teammate Stéphane Augé, and Gusev maintains the lead in the young riders' white jersey competition.

And let's have no more talk of Dave Zabriskie as the Lanterne Rouge, please, as Dave Z finished in a big group @ 11:15 back, and jumps to 178th, 18:24 behind teammate Cancellara. Geoffroy Lequatre, a Cofidis rider who appeared to injure his right arm in a heavy fall and wobbled in 44:04 back, is 45:38 behind Cancellara to lead the Lanterne Rouge standings.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 12, 2007 in 2007 Stage 5, Alberto Contador, Alejandro Valverde, Alexandre Vinokourov, Andreas Klöden, Andrey Kashechkin, Cadel Evans, Chris Horner, Dave Zabriskie, David Millar, Denis Menchov, Erik Zabel, Filippo Pozzato, George Hincapie, Levi Leipheimer, Linus Gerdemann, Michael Rogers, Oscar Freire, Stefan Schumacher, Sylvain Chavanel, Thomas Dekker, Top Stories, Vladimir Karpets, Yaroslav Popovych | Permalink | Comments (0)

July 01, 2007

Gerolsteiner confirms Tour team

VeloNews | 'Bella' speaks; Vino' concedes Ferrari link; Gerolsteiner for the Tour

Saturday, Gerolsteiner confirmed their squad for the 2007 Tour.

    Gerolsteiner 2007 Tour de France roster:
  • Robert Forster (Germany)
  • Markus Fothen (Germany)
  • Heinrich Haussler (Germany)
  • Bernhard Kohl (Austria)
  • Sven Krauss (Germany)
  • Ronny Scholz (Germany)
  • Stefan Schumacher (Germany)
  • Fabian Wegmann (Germany)
  • Peter Wrolich (Austria)

Their alternates are David Kopp and Volker Ordowski, both of Germany.

On Sunday, Wegmann went out and won the German national road championships, ahead of Patrik Sinkewitz, with Christian Knees winning the field sprint almost 30 seconds behind.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 1, 2007 in 2007 team rosters, Fabian Wegmann, Stefan Schumacher, Tour de France 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 25, 2007

Karpets is last Vladimir left at TdS

cyclingnews.com | Flying Karpets grabs Tour de Suisse

Caisse d'Epargne's Vladimir Karpets emerged victorious from the Tour of Vladimirs, as his teammate and former race leader Vladimir Efimkin faded in the time trial at the Tour of Switzerland Sunday.

CSC's Fabian Cancellara looks like a pretty good bet for the Tour de France prologue in London, as he took the day's 33.7-km time trial by 20 seconds ahead of Astana's Andreas Klöden. Cancellara also took the Swiss prologue, but Sunday was sweeter, coming in Bern, his hometown.

Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher was 3rd on the day, at :33, ahead of Discovery's Stijn Devolder at 1:04, Discovery's Vladimir Gusev, who won Stage 7, at 1:05, and Karpets 6th at 1:06.

Efimkin could manage only 38th, dropping 3:22 to Cancellara.

Frank Schleck had promised to go all out to take the race lead, but he fell to 7th overall with a 29th-place finish on the day, 2:50 back.


VeloNews | Karpets wins Swiss tour; Cancellara bags final stage

cyclingnews.com | Stage 9 photo gallery

Posted by Frank Steele on June 25, 2007 in Fabian Cancellara, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories, Tour de Suisse 2007, Vladimir Karpets | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

March 19, 2007

Germans invade Italy: Schumacher, Klöden lead Tirreno-Adriatico

Eurosport | Schumacher takes lead

Stefan Schumacher, better known as a classics rider, took over the race lead at Tirreno-Adriatico Sunday with a strong time trial.

Gerolsteiner's Schumacher rode the 20.5-kilometer (12.7-mile) course in 27:08, one second faster than Astana's Andreas Klöden and six seconds ahead of T-Mobile's Kim Kirchen. It was a great day for former T-Mobiles: Schumacher, Klöden, and 4th-place Astana rider Alexandre Vinokourov all have ridden for the team.

Schumacher takes the overall race lead, 3 seconds up on Klöden, and 11 ahead of Vinokourov.

Riccardo Riccò, who won both Stage 3 on Friday and Stage 4 Saturday, was well off the pace Sunday, clocking a 29:14 that dropped him back to 17th on GC.

Tinkoff's Tyler Hamilton, still reportedly suffering from the flu, finished in 148th on the day, at 4:38. Other Americans: Jason McCartney, 34th at 1:41; Freddie Rodriguez, 142nd at 4:25.

Posted by Frank Steele on March 19, 2007 in Andreas Klöden, Fred Rodriguez, Stefan Schumacher, Tirreno-Adriatico 2007, Tyler Freaking Hamilton | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 21, 2006

Boonen takes Benelux Stage 5 at home

Boonen at home in winner's circleThe Eneco Tour of Benelux came to world road champion Tom Boonen's hometown of Balen today, and the Belgian supersprinter delivered for the local fans.

Thunderstorms and greasy conditions played havoc with the Cycling.TV live coverage, but they were able to show the finish seconds after Boonen outkicked Credit Agricole's Julian Dean and Milram's Simone Cadamuro. It was Boonen's 3rd sprint win of the race, and 20th of the season. He's got to be looking forward to the upcoming world championships, where he'll be a strong favorite to repeat.

Top 10:
1) Tom Boonen, Belgium, QuickStep, in 3:52:20
2) Julian Dean, New Zealand, Credit Agricole, same time
3) Simone Cadamuro, Italy, Milram, s.t.
4) Alexei Markov, Russia, Caisse d'Epargne, s.t.
5) Alessandro Ballan, Italy, Lampre, s.t.
6) Yuriy Krivtsov, Ukraine, AG2R, s.t.
7) Enrico Gasparotto, Italy, Liquigas, s.t.
8) David Kopp, Germany, Gerolsteiner, s.t.
9) Olaf Pollack, Germany, T-Mobile, s.t.
10) Lloyd Mondory, France, AG2R, s.t.

The stage had minimal effect on the overall classification, where George Hincapie continues to lead Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher by 3 slim seconds.

1) George Hincapie, USA, Discovery Channel, 17:24:44
2) Stefan Schumacher, Germany, Gerolsteiner, at :03
3) Vincenzo Nibali, Italy, Liquigas, at :11
4) José Ivan Gutierrez, Spain, Caisse d'Epargne, at :15
5) Manuel Quinziato, Italy, Liquigas, at :31
6) Philippe Gilbert, Belgium, Française des Jeux, at :32
7) Joost Posthuma, Netherlands, Rabobank, at :34
8) Alexei Markov, Russia, Caisse d'Epargne, at :50
9) Juan Antonio Flecha, Spain, Rabobank, at :51
10) Alessandro Ballan, Italy, Lampre, at :52


cyclingnews.com : Stage report | Results | Standings | Photo Gallery

VeloNews | Boonen takes another win at Benelux tour; Hincapie holds lead

Posted by Frank Steele on August 21, 2006 in George Hincapie, Julian Dean, Stefan Schumacher, Tom Boonen, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 17, 2006

Boonen takes Benelux Stage 1

World Champion Tom Boonen took the 1st stage at the Eneco Tour of Benelux today, outkicking Milram's Simone Cadamuro and Enrico Gaspartotto of Luquigas at the finish in Hoogeveen in the Netherlands.

With a time bonus, Boonen takes over the red race leader's jersey from prologue winner Stefan Schumacher of Gerolsteiner.

Top 10:
1) Tom Boonen, Belgium, QuickStep, in 4:12:52
2) Simone Cadamuro, Italy, Team Milram, same time
3) Enrico Gasparotto, Italy, Liquigas, s.t.
4) Julian Dean, New Zealand, Credit Agricole, s.t.
5) Marco Zanotti, Italy, Unibet.com
6) Alexei Markov, Russia, Caisse d'Epargne, s.t.
7) Fabio Sabatini, Italy, Team Milram, s.t.
8) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, s.t.
9) Alessandro Ballan, Italy, Lampre, s.t.
10) Aurelien Clerc, Switzerland, Phonak

General Classification (corrected, sorry):
1) Tom Boonen, QuickStep
2) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, at :04
3) George Hincapie, Discovery Channel, at :07
4) José Ivan Gutierrez, Caisse d'Epargne, at :08
5) Alexei Markov, Russia, Caisse d'Epargner, at :11

Posted by Frank Steele on August 17, 2006 in George Hincapie, Julian Dean, Stefan Schumacher, Tom Boonen | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

August 16, 2006

Schumacher takes Benelux prologue

Eurosport | Schu takes prologue victory

Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher took the prologue of the 2nd Annual Eneco Tour of Benelux today.

Schumacher takes Benelux prologueSchumacher, who won an exciting stage of the Giro and wore its leader's jersey back in May, edged George “I can finish 2nd in any prologue, anywhere” Hincapie with a 7:00.78 time on the 5.8-kilometer course. Rabobank's Joost Posthuma was 3rd on the day. Hincapie also finished 2nd in prologues at the Tour de France and the Dauphiné Libéré this season.

Schumacher, who notched the 5th win of his first ProTour season, told the BBC he's chasing the overall win:

“It's great to beat several time-trial specialists, but I'm not surprised - I'm in good form and will do my best to win overall.”

CSC's Bobby Julich is the defending champ, and he finished 15th on the day, 11.42 seconds back. Other Americans were Jason McCartney, 11th at 8.82, Saunier Duval's Aaron Olson, 45th at 17.59, and Freddie Rodriguez, back in action in 85th at 23.91.

Is it just me, or does the photo with this story at Eurosport make Schumacher look like a Star Trek alien?


cyclingnews.com | Eneco Tour of Benelux prologue photo gallery | Results

Posted by Frank Steele on August 16, 2006 in Bobby Julich, Fred Rodriguez, George Hincapie, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

May 11, 2006

Giro TTT photo galleries from around the web

Graham Watson:

(l-r) Disco slowdown, T-Mo gogo, Honchar trades magenta for pink

(Click through to GrahamWatson.com for full-size images)


Armstrong hitchin' a ride; Basso, CSC on the top step

Click through to cyclingnews.com for full-size images)


New pink jersey leading T-Mobile, old pink jersey w/Gerolsteiner squad.

Click for AP cycling photo wire. Unlike the others, this will be current when you click through.

Posted by Frank Steele on May 11, 2006 in Giro d'Italia 2006, Giro d’Italia, Ivan Basso, Lance Armstrong, Photo galleries, Sergei Honchar, Stefan Schumacher | Permalink | Comments (0)

CSC takes Giro TTT; T-Mobile's Honchar new race leader

cyclingnews.com | Giro d'Italia Stage 6 results

Team CSC turned on the afterburners today to scorch the Giro d'Italia's team time trial. One of my favorite cycling stages, the TTT is a combination of power and cooperation, with teams riding in tight rotating pacelines, varying the workload so their strongest TT men spend more time pulling, and lead-group riders are awarded the time of the 5th member of their team to cross the line. The course today was a pure power course, flat to gently descending, with few turns and wide roads.

Most of the early teams came in around 38 minutes, but CSC, starting 5th from last, came in at 36:56. Jan Ullrich's T-Mobile squad, riding here in support of Ukraine's Sergei Honchar, departed 5 minutes after CSC, and four of their riders finished in 36:55, but Matthias Kessler was gapped at the finish, and came in 2 seconds back to give T-Mobile a 2nd place in (correction) 36:57.

Then came Team Discovery, which had dominated the TTT of recent Tours de France. Without Armstrong and Hincapie, this was a different Discovery, and they finished at the front of the 2nd tier, 39 seconds behind CSC, which held up for 3rd on the day. They were already 24 seconds down at the 10 km (6-mile) mark, and didn't put on the late-stage rush they've shown in the Tour.

Gerolsteiner, riding last with race leader Stefan Schumacher, could manage only 6th, at 1:03.

T-Mobile can take solace in the race leadership, as Sergei Honchar now leads CSC's Jens Voigt and T-Mobile teammate Michael Rogers by 6 seconds. Among GC threats, Basso is 4th at 11 seconds, Savoldelli drops to 5th at 20 seconds, Danilo Di Luca is 12th at 44 seconds. Damiano Cunego's Lampre squad was 1:04 back, and Gilberto Simoni's squad was 1:26 behind CSC. I'll post their new placings when I see them.

The day's big winner has to be Ivan Basso. He's picked up 39 seconds or more against the real Giro threats (sorry, Sergei), and he's no slouch in the mountains. Di Luca, too has to be pleased, as Liquigas limited the damage, finishing 4th on the day at 42 seconds.

The big loser is Gilberto Simoni, who just took 90 seconds of damage in a 40 minute ride.

This was the first TTT in the Giro in 17 years, and there will be none in the Tour de France this year. Organizers had watered down the TTT the last few years to help the Euskaltel-Euskadis of the world, but it's a shame to see it eliminated. The TTT is a very photogenic (and telegenic) event, and it emphasizes the team aspect of cycling in a very visible way.

Posted by Frank Steele on May 11, 2006 in Damiano Cunego, Danilo Di Luca, Gilberto Simoni, Giro d'Italia 2006, Giro d’Italia, Ivan Basso, Michael Rogers, Sergei Honchar, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (1)

May 08, 2006

Schumacher takes classics-style Giro stage, Petacchi out

VeloNews.com | Schumacher takes lead after wet, ugly day at Giro

Schumacher's powerful win
Schumacher's win at Namur
Fotoreporter Sirotti/cyclingnews.com
Stefan Schumacher took an enormous win in Belgium today, winning Stage 3 of the Giro on the ascent to the citadel of Namur.

Schumacher wisely marked QuickStep's Paolo Bettini, who dropped the field to try to reel in Discovery Channel's Jose-Luis Rubiera, but couldn't close the gap. At about 800 meters to ride, Schumacher squashed the Cricket, kung-fued Chechu, and took the biggest win of his career. Chechu was 2 seconds back for 2nd, and Schumacher's Gerolsteiner teammate Davide Rebellin led in the field 6 seconds back.

Factoring in his margin of victory over Paolo Savoldelli, and the 20-second stage win bonus, Schumacher finds himself in the race leader's jersey, 13 seconds ahead of Savoldelli, 23 seconds ahead of Davide Rebellin.

Despite losing the race lead, Paolo Savoldelli gained time on most of his overall GC rivals, and now leads Sergei Honchar by 18 seconds, Danilo Di Luca by :23, Ivan Basso by :28, Damiano Cunego by :30, and Gilberto Simoni by :49.

Team Milram sprint superstar Alessandro Petacchi got tangled up in a late race pileup, needed medical attention, and came in 14:38 back. After the race, he abandoned, with a fractured kneecap. He's returning to Italy for surgery, and may not be able to start the Tour. Petacchi has 19 stage wins in the last 3 Giros.

Tomorrow's the Giro's last day in Belgium, with a rest day Wednesday and the team time trial from Piacenza to Cremona on Thursday.


Eurosport.com | Petacchi leaves the race

cyclingnews.com | Giro Stage 3 wrapup | Full results

Posted by Frank Steele on May 8, 2006 in Alessandro Petacchi, Damiano Cunego, Danilo Di Luca, Davide Rebellin, Giro d'Italia 2006, Giro d’Italia, Ivan Basso, Paolo Bettini, Paolo Savoldelli, Sergei Honchar, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0)

May 06, 2006

Savoldelli takes Giro Stage 1

Defending Giro champion Paolo Savoldelli of Discovery Channel took today's short time trial in Belgium.

Savoldelli was the only rider to covered the 6.2 kilometers in less than 8 minutes. His 7:50 was 11 seconds faster than Française des Jeux's Bradley McGee, and 13 seconds ahead of José Enrigue Gutierrez of Phonak.

Among other favorites, Danilo Di Luca was 10th on the day, at 19 seconds, Ivan Basso was at 23 seconds, Cunego was at :25, and Gilberto Simoni was at :26.

Paolo Bettini, who had hoped to wear the race leader's jersey after Stage 3, came in at 8:32, so he'll need to take 42 seconds out of Savoldelli.

Among Americans, Bobby Julich finished in 8:35, Tom Danielson was in at 8:11, Jason McCartney at 8:21, Phonak's Patrick McCarty, starting his first grand tour, was 93rd in 8:44, and Saunier-Duval's Aaron Olson, likewise starting his first GT, finished in 9:07.

Jan Ullrich finished in 8:39 for 80th on the day.

Top 10:
1) Paolo Savoldelli, Discovery Channel, in 7:50
2) Bradley McGee, Française des Jeux, at :11
3) José Enrique Gutierrez, Phonak, at :13
4) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, same time
5) Serguei Honchar, T-Mobile, at :15
6) Francisco Perez, Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears, at :16
7 José Ivan Gutierrez, Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears, same time
8) Michael Rogers, T-Mobile, at :17
9) Davide Rebellin, Gerolsteiner, at :18
10) Danilo Di Luca, Liquigas, at :19


VeloNews.com | Savoldelli throws down the gauntlet

Eurosport | Back in pink for Savoldelli

cyclingnews.com | Full results | Photo gallery

Tickers: Daily Peloton | VeloNews | cyclingnews.com

Posted by Frank Steele on May 6, 2006 in Bobby Julich, Bradley McGee, Damiano Cunego, Danilo Di Luca, Davide Rebellin, Giro d'Italia 2006, Giro d’Italia, Ivan Basso, Jan Ullrich, Jose Enrique Gutierrez, Michael Rogers, Paolo Bettini, Paolo Savoldelli, Sergei Honchar, Stefan Schumacher, Tom Danielson, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 16, 2006

Frank Schleck takes Amstel Gold

Eurosport | Schleck's golden gift

CSC's Luxembourg champion Frank Schleck has been in more breaks this season than Allan Iverson. Sunday, he took it to the hoop.

Schleck attacked out of a 10-man break with 9 kilometers to ride, to beat Steffen Wesemann of T-Mobile and perennial Amstel podium finisher Michael Boogerd of Rabobank. Shleck is the first Luxembourgian to win Amstel, and the first to win a classic since Marcel Erzner took Liége-Bastogne-Liége in 1954.

T-Mobile had three men in the lead group late, but Wesemann couldn't match Schleck's move. Pre-race favorite Paolo Bettini of Quickstep was 8th on the day, back 53 seconds.

Somebody noted the youth movement apparent in the classics so far, with Boonen, Cancellara, and Schleck all 26 or less.

Don't forget OLN has same-day coverage of Amstel Gold this afternoon on Cyclysm Sundays.

Top 10:
1) Frank Schleck, Team CSC, 6:25:39
2) Steffen Wesemann, T-Mobile, at :22
3) Michael Boogerd, Rabobank at :46
4) Karsten Kroon, Team CSC, at :48
5) Patrik Sinkewitz, T-Mobile, same time
6) Davide Rebellin, Gerolsteiner, s.t.
7) Miguel Martin Perdiguero (Spa) Phonak, s.t.
8) Paolo Bettini, QuickStep, at :53
9) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, at :57
10) Sergey Ivanov, T-Mobile, at 1:07


Forum.fok.nl | Amstel gold fan pics

Daily Peloton | Amstel Gold live ticker

cyclingnews.com | 41st Amstel Gold results

Posted by Frank Steele on April 16, 2006 in Davide Rebellin, Frank Schleck, Paolo Bettini, Patrik Sinkewitz, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 09, 2006

Boonen, Boonen, Boonen while Landis maintains Paris-Nice lead

VeloNews.com | Hat trick for Boonen in Paris-Nice; Floyd on cruise control

CSC's O'Grady broke 5 ribs and his collarbone
Boonen yet again
Graham Watson

Tom Boonen continued his early domination at Paris-Nice, taking his 3rd stage win (out of 4 stages and a prologue).

Boonen survived a late chain skip with about 150 meters to ride to outsprint Allan Davis, who has been second in each of Boonen's Paris-Nice stage wins. Danilo Napolitano was 3rd at the line, but was DQ'ed for squirelly sprinting , elevating Stefan Schumacher into 3rd on the stage.

Said Boonen:

"For sure, things are going fine for us, we're very strong. The problem is that in Milan-San Remo, which is our main goal, we won't be alone in controlling the race as is the case here.

"We'll be the favourite team and everybody will be out to get us. I would say Alessandro Petacchi retains a 60 percent chance to win Milan-San Remo while my chances are 40 percent."

I guess that leaves Paolo Bettini out in the cold.

Phonak's Floyd Landis continues as the race leader, and 7-time Paris-Nice winner Sean Kelly told VeloNews he thinks Landis should take the overall:

"I think he has a good chance of holding on," seven-time Paris-Nice winner Sean Kelly told VeloNews. "The way he's riding, I don't believe anyone can stay with him on the climbs. He shouldn't have any difficulty looking out for himself."

Kelly said the Phonak team will be up for the challenge of supporting Landis, especially with teammate Axel Merckx riding well Wednesday to move into 13th overall at 1:47 back.

"Because there aren't any mountaintop finishes, I think it will be actually easier to control," Kelly said. "What they have to watch out for are riders slipping away early in the stages."


Eurosport.com | History repeats for Boonen, Davis
cyclingnews.com | Paris-Nice Stage 4: World champ makes it three
ThePaceline.com (free reg. required) | Paris-Nice Stage 4 Report
procycling.com | Tenth win already for Boonen


cyclingnews.com | Paris-Nice Stage 4 photo gallery
GrahamWatson.com | Paris-Nice Stage 4 photo gallery

Posted by Frank Steele on March 9, 2006 in Floyd Landis, Paris-Nice '06, Stefan Schumacher, Tom Boonen, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 08, 2006

Landis dominates Stage 3 to take Paris-Nice lead

VeloNews | Landis seizes lead at Paris-Nice

Landis in yellow with Paris-Nice stage win
Graham Watson
Floyd Landis is in monster shape early this year. He won the inaugural Amgen Tour of California convincingly, and today, he put major time into every overall rival for the overall win at Paris-Nice.

On the day's last climb, Johan Vansummeren and Alberto Martinez were the first to strike. David Moncoutie struggled to bridge, followed by Samuel Sanchez, Frank Schleck, Toni Colom, Landis, and eventual stage-winner Paxti Vila of Lampre. Nearing the summit, Landis turned up the heat, and slowly dropped his break-mates.

On the 18-kilometer descent to St. Etienne, Landis rode like he stole something, with Vila mostly wheelsucking, stretching the pair's lead out to over a minute. At the line, Vila came around for his first pro victory, but Landis was the day's big winner.

Landis on the podium
AP Photo/Patrick Gardin
Some interesting names are lurking 90 or so seconds back, including Haimar Zubeldia, Jose Azevedo and Chris Horner, no mean climbers themselves, as well as Axel Merckx and Erik Dekker.

On the day, Landis lost teammates Robbie Hunter, who left the race with a sinus infection, and Aurelien Clerc, who was outside the time limit. He's got to try to hold on to the jersey with just 5 teammates.

Bobby Julich lost 8:47 on the day, finishing with Andrey Kaschechkin of Liberty Seguros.

Overall Top 10 after Stage 3:
1) Floyd Landis, Phonak, in 14:46:28
2) Patxi Vila, Lampre, at 0:09
3) Samuel Sanchez, Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:13
4) Antonio Colom, Caisse L'Espargne-Illes Balears, at 1:23
5) Frank Schleck, Team CSC, same time
6) Jose Azevedo, Discovery Channel, at 1:35
7) Haimar Zubeldia, Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:37
8) Pietro Caucchioli, Credit Agricole, at 1:39
9) Stefan Schumacher, Gerolsteiner, same time
10) Jose Luis Rubiera, Discovery Channel, at 1:40


VeloNews | Complete results
cyclingnews.com | Paris-Nice Stage 3: Floyd Landis takes lead at crucial point


GrahamWatson.com | Paris-Nice Stage 3 Photo Gallery
cyclingnews.com | Paris-Nice Stage 3 Photo Gallery

Posted by Frank Steele on March 8, 2006 in Bobby Julich, Chris Horner, David Moncoutié, Erik Dekker, Floyd Landis, Paris-Nice '06, Stefan Schumacher, Top Stories | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack