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Mont Ventoux
Photo ©: Sirotti

Second edition news for June 13, 2002

Edited by Jeff Jones

Bruyneel comments on Armstrong's TT performance

US Postal director Johan Bruyneel was more than satisfied with Lance Armstrong's performance in the third stage of the Dauphine Libéré, where he finished second to Santiago Botero (Kelme) by 42 seconds but took over the lead of the race.

"Lance did a great time trial," commented Bruyneel. "He was very comfortable throughout the race and stayed within himself from start to finish. Botero is a very strong time trialist and when he has one of those days, nobody can beat him. Yet you see the big difference Lance put into everyone else and realize Botero is really powerful."

While Botero was brilliant, Armstrong still managed to put over a minute into his closest rival, Haimar Zubeldia (Euskaltel-Euskadi) who finished third in the stage. Zubeldia is now in second overall, 1'12 behind Armstrong, with Stage 2 winner Denis Menchov (iBanesto) third at 1'59.

"The Dauphine is still the Dauphine, it's a very hard race," said Bruyneel. "Saturday's stage is very, very hard with several climbs including the Joux Plane. On the other hand, it's time for the USPS team to start defending a jersey - we did it for only one day this year at the Midi Libre. It's good training and a good way for us to get used to the team system of defending the jersey. I feel our team here is strong, all are possible Tour (de France) riders. It will be a good test to see how everyone is. It will also be a good test for me, to get used to the tactics again. It's time to get going."

Victor Hugo Pena (10th at 2'50), and Floyd Landis (17th at 3'25) also impressed Bruyneel, particularly the latter who is another converted mountain biker. "Yesterday [on Mont Ventoux] Floyd was very good - it was the first time I gave him some freedom in a race, the chance to ride his own race and not have to work for Lance," said Bruyneel. "It is good for us tactically and gives us something else to play with. He did an amazing climb and he was very happy after the stage. The team has expressed confidence in him right from the start of the season and yesterday he really proved us right."

Finally Viatcheslav Ekimov, in his first race since last September when he "retired" finished 23rd on Ventoux and 30th in the time trial. "Over here, everyone is really surprised at Ekimov's performance, but I'm not," added Bruyneel. "He came with our team to a mountain training camp after the Midi Libre and was already in great shape. We still must be careful with him. He needs to get through this race and then recover from it."

"It's strange to say, but its like he has never left. That is how I feel and that is how the guys feel."

Vandenbroucke still hungry

Frank Vandenbroucke, suspended for six months by the Belgian cycling federation and still facing a court case related to possession of banned drugs, says that he is not done yet, despite what has been written about him in the Belgian press. Vandenbroucke featured on the VTM program "Eén uur tijd-verlies" on Wednesday night, where he broke his silence for the first time since his arrest on February 28.

He said that he wanted to win a big race again, despite the large hurdles in the way. "I will let the people decide," he said. "I don't want do say every day in the press that it's going well with me. I don't seek the press and popularity. I am not allowed to speak about the affair - I am forbidden."

"The media has a lot of power and they have damaged me. They have portrayed me as a criminal."

Vicioso to ONCE

Spanish sprinter Angel Vicioso will leave Kelme-Costa Blanca at the end of this season to join Manolo Saiz' ONCE-Eroski team. Vicisio has signed a preliminary contract for the next two seasons. He will leave the embattled Kelme team, which still hopes to continue until the end of this season with the support of the communities of Valencia and Alicante.

Giro d'Abruzzo cancelled

The Giro d'Abruzzo, classed as 2.5 by the UCI, has been cancelled for this year. The race was scheduled to take place from June 12-16, but the organisers were forced to call it off after several teams pulled out.

"After the events of the last Giro d'Italia, a lot of professional teams cancelled their engagement to our Giro," read a statement from the organisers. "With great regret on the part of the organisers, the 32nd Giro d'Abruzzo will return next year."

USA National Racing Calendar Standings

Following the First Union series last week, USA Cycling has updated its national series rankings, which determine the best rider and team competing on the domestic circuit. The series is not restricted to US riders.

Current leader of the men's rankings is Chris Horner (Prime Alliance), who won just about every early season race and now has a 262 point lead over Gord Fraser (Mercury). Horner's teammate Danny Pate is in third place, another 94 points behind, while the winner of the USPRO Championships, Mark Walters (Navigators) has moved up to 4th. Recently crowned USPRO Champion Chann McRae (US Postal) is in 8th spot.

In the women's standings, German Judith Arndt (Saturn) is tied for first place with her former teammate Lyne Bessette (Canadian National/Quebec Regional Team). The pair have a 48 point lead over Canadian Geneviève Jeanson (Rona), with the best placed US rider Tina Mayolo-Pic (Diet Rite) in fourth.

Mercury has taken over from Prime Alliance in the men's team standings, with Navigators a distant third. In the women's teams, Saturn is number one on 1905 points with Rona second on 1057 points, and Talgo America third on 818 points.

Rankings as of June 11

Men - Individual

1 Chris Horner (USA) Prime Alliance                   851 pts
2 Gord Fraser (Can) Mercury                           589
3 Danny Pate (USA) Prime Alliance                     495
4 Mark Walters (USA) Navigators                       492
5 Henk Vogels (Aus) Mercury                           476
6 Chris Wherry (USA) Mercury                          447
7 John Lieswyn (USA) 7UP/NutraFig                     351
8 Chann McRae (USA) U.S. Postal Service               312
9 Charles Dionne (Can) 7UP/NutraFig                   306
10 Oleg Grishkine (Rus) Navigators                    305
11 Mark McCormack (USA) Saturn Cycling Team           272
12 Soren Petersen (Den) Saturn Cycling Team           269
13 Damon Kluck (USA) Saturn Cycling Team              246
14 David Clinger (USA) U.S. Postal Service            240
15 Eric Wohlberg (Can) Saturn Cycling Team            240
16 Scott Moninger (USA) Mercury                       233
17 David Zabriskie (USA) U.S. Postal Service          222
18 Greg Henderson (NZl) 7UP/NutraFig                  221
19 Vasilli Davidenko (Rus) Navigators                 217
20 George Hincapie (USA) U.S. Postal Service          213

Women - Individual

1 Judith Arndt (Ger) Saturn Cycling Team              607 pts
2 Lyne Bessette (Can) Canadian National Team          607
3 Geneviève Jeanson (Can) Rona Cycling Team           559
4 Tina Mayolo-Pic (USA) Diet Rite                     441
5 Petra Rossner (Ger) Saturn Cycling Team             405
6 Kimberly Bruckner (USA) Saturn Cycling Team         371
7 Laura VanGilder (USA) Trek PLUS                     326
8 Ina Teutenberg (Ger) Saturn Cycling Team            288
9 Susan Palmer-Komar (Can) Talgo America              282
10 Kimberly Anderson (USA) T - Mobile USA             280
11 Anna Millward (Aus) Saturn Cycling Team            234
12 Susy Pryde (NZl) Talgo America                     230
13 Karen Bockel (Ger) Rona Cycling Team               215
14 Dede Demet Barry (USA) Talgo America               200
15 Nicole Freedman (USA) Rona Cycling Team            173
16 Valen Polkhanova (Rus) Itera                       160
17 Becky Conzelman (USA) Freddie Fu                   150
18 Gina Grain (USA) Litespeed Atlanta Velo            144
19 Katrina Berger (USA) T - Mobile USA                142
20 Andrea Hannos (Can) Rona Cycling Team              132

Men - Teams

1 Mercury                                            1891 pts
2 Prime Alliance                                     1794
3 Navigators                                         1258
4 U.S. Postal Service                                1196
5 Saturn Cycling Team                                1170
6 7UP/NutraFig                                       1021
7 Schroeder Iron                                      291
8 Jelly Belly                                         283
9 MROZ                                                246
10 Lotto-Adecco                                       187

Women - Teams

1 Saturn Cycling Team                                1905 pts
2 Rona Cycling Team                                  1057
3 Talgo America                                       818
4 T - Mobile USA                                      739
5 Diet Rite                                           707
6 Canadian National Team                              691
7 Bianchi USA                                         367
8 Trek PLUS                                           355
9 Freddie Fu                                          335
10 Itera                                              269

Courtesy of