87th Meisterschaft von Zürich - CDM

Zürich, Switzerland, August 20, 2000

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Complete Live Report

Welcome to the eighth round of the World Cup. In the cup standings German Erik Zabel (Telekom) still has a comfortable lead, but last weekend in San Sebastian last year's winner Andrei Tchmil (Lotto) gained on the German by finishing fourth while Zabel came in pointless at 55th, disappointed at his team mates who he accused of being too weak in their support.

The gap in the overall standings is 124 points, there is 100 for a victory. This is a parcours that suits Tchmil better than Zabel. The race is run over six laps on a 41.4 km circuit with two major climbs, to Forch at 19.9 km and Pfannenstiel at 24.2 the latter being the toughest. Once again welcome to an exciting afternoon in Zürich.

14:30 CET - 80 km to go

With a little less then two laps to go there are some sixty riders in the peloton. The first major attack of the day saw among others Rabobankers Markus Zberg and Maarten den Bakker try their luck without success. A solo effort by Dirk Muller (Post Suisse) is also over. In the peloton Erik Zabel seems uncomfortable during the first climb on this lap. Laurent Jalabert (ONCE) is reported to have lost contact.

15:20 CET - 48 km to go

Right now the field is on its way through Zürich for the fifth time and we have an excellent leading group. How about Armstrong (USP), Ullrich (Telekom), Casagrande (Vini Caldirola), Freire (Mapei), Rebellin (Liquigas), Camenzind (Lampre), de Paoli (Mercatone) and some others? They are now chased by a smaller group with Bartoli (Mapei), Cigana (Mercatone), Vainsteins (Vini Caldirola) and Zarrabeitia (ONCE).

15:27 CET - 41 km to go

The two other names in the front group: Laurent Dufaux (Saeco) and Andreij Kivilev (Ag2R).de Paoli is in the second group some 45 seconds behind.

15:35 CET

The main peloton are some 50 riders several minutes behind and there are no one trying to raise the speed. In the peloton are Tchmil as well as Zabel and by all means Michael Andersson (Mercatone) in his comeback to top racing. The front group is climbing up to Forch for the last time, Freire as last wheel, maybe waiting for Bartoli.

15:40 CET - 36 km to go

The five chasers are losing ground, 52 seconds now, on the front octet that has reached the Zumikon on the Forch climb. This seems to be the stage racers day with Armstrong, Ullrich and Dufaux along up front. Casagrande is both while Rebellin, Freire and Camenzind are classics experts. Kivilev is an outsider with no victories so far.

15:45 CET - 30 km to go

In Zumikon the gap was 1.05 all the five riders in the chasing group are seemingly working hard but the front group has worked well so far. Armstrong is last wheel now drinking from a can handed over from the team car. He has Freire in front of him. The riders will use some liquid today, it's more than 35 degrees Celsius.

15:52 CET - 26 km to go

The top riders are shaking their legs now. Team cars are handing over the last bottles, and last advice, before the 20 km mark.

15.56 CET - 21 km to go

The front group is in the final climb to Pfannenstiel. This is where things will have to happen, unless there will be sprint. Kivilev has lost contact now on the climb that goes over open fields now. No attacks so far and fairly high gears on everybody.

16.00 CET - 18 km to go

Casagrande has done a great deal of the work on the early part. It's flattening out a bit right now. No real attacks. Ullrich is a very good sprinter as a matter of fact, at least in this environment. Of course Freire can match Zabel at times. Casagrande once again up front on the final part of the climb.

16:07 CET - 16 km to go

At last an attack. Casagrande gives it all. Rebellin in trouble, also Freire and Camenzind. Casagrande, Dufaux and Ullrich in the lead now with Armstrong a bit behind on the narrow road and he catches them as Ullrich is driving the front quartet. Freire and Camenzind are trying to keep the gap as little as possible. Rebellin however is also able to bridge to the front but then he gets in trouble again. The motorbikes are too close now when Ullrich attacks again. Casagrande and Dufaux tries to hang on and they get the German. But where is Armstrong?

16.12 CET - 12 km to go

The top trio is working well together and Armstrong and Rebellin are more than 30 seconds behind. And it is Armstrong doing most of the job. Short periods in front of the trio. Behind Rebellin is eating while hanging on Armstrong but now he goes up. There is a little climb now, the very last since the final eight kms are absolutely flat.

16.16 CET - 8 km to go

The gap is reported to be 37 seconds now and Ullrich is really working hard. Speed is 65 kph on the way down (13 per cent) toward the Lake Zürich.

16.20 CET - 5 kms to go

On the shoreline now, there might be an attack here. Armstrong and Rebellin now 52 seconds behind. Still an even team time trial riding in the front trio. Casagrande is looking behind but there is nothing to see anymore.

16.25 CET - 2 kms to go

There will be a sprint. Ullrich is a good small group sprinter but there might be a sprint from a slow speed which isn't so common. Dufaux is not pushing too hard right now. Casagrande did not impress as a sprinter in Hamburg two weeks ago where he was second.

16.27 CET - Finish

Under the banner. Ullrich out on the right attacking, Dufaux covers and Ullrich gives up this under the banner attack. Big Ullrich in front now the others waiting. Casagrande on last wheel. Ullrich starts from the front but Dufaux passes the German on the line more or less, Ullrich second and Casagrande third.

16.31 CET

Rebellin fourth ahead on Armstrong without sprint, Freire rolls in at 1.22 ahead of Camenzind. Dufaux had the lightest gear in this short sprint which probably gave the 31 year old home rider the victory. Kiviliev manages to take eighth at 4.28 and then comes the lone de Paoli at 4.45 and then Vainsteins, Bartoli and Zarrabetia some seconds later.

Results (unoficial timing):

1. Laurent Dufaux (Swi) Saeco-Valli&Valli
2. Jan Ullrich (Ger) Team Deutsche Telekom
3. Francesco Casagrande (Ita) Vini Caldirola
4. Davide Rebellin (Ita) Liquigas-Pata            1.00
5. Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service
6. Oscar Freire (Spa) Mapei-Quick Step            1.22
7. Oscar Camenzind (Swi) Lampre-Daikin
8. Andrei Kivilev (Kaz) Ag2R                      4.28
9. Daniele de Paoli (Ita) Mercatone Uno           4.45
10. Romans Vainsteins (Lat) Vini Caldirola        4.52
11. Michele Bartoli (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step
12. Mikel Zarrabeitia (Spa) O N C E