87th Tour de France - Grand Tour

France, July 1 - 23, 2000

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Complete live report

Stage 13 - July 14: Avignon - Draguignan, 185.5 km

Start time: 11:49
Estimated finish time: 16:27

Weather: Fairly overcast and humid, and there could even some showers on quatorze Julliet, the French National holiday. It will be fast today because of prevailing tailwind.

A lot of people expect the French riders, especially Richard Virenque to go on the attack to win the stage. In addition, many people still can't figure out why Banesto rode so hard yesterday, as both Zülle and Jimenez exploded in the first kilometre of the ascent of Mont Ventoux. Their top man in the Tour is now Francesco Mancebo, 8th at 9.42.

11:50 CET - 0.0 km

The 6.8 km neutral section is finished and the riders are off racing as of 11:50 CET.

The sprints today are at Robion (km 30), Aups (km 154), and the finish in Draguignan (km 185). The climbs are all of minor category: Côte de Saint-Hilaire (Cat. 4, km 44), Côte de Cadarache (km 107.5, Cat. 4), and the Côte de l'Esparrus (km 169.5, Cat. 4).

However, this is by no means an easy cruise for the peloton. Expect a lot of attacking on the undulating roads into the foothills of the Alps.

12:07 CET - 12.0 km

They're getting stuck into things early on, as Gian Mateo Fagnini (Telekom) and Massimiliano Lelli (Cofidis) take off at the 2.5 kilometre mark. They were joined by Stephane Heulot (FdJ) but the peloton are alert and they are caught quickly. This is not going to be a slow ride.

150 riders are left in the race now after yesterday's stage saw 8 retirements and one non-starter. Another non-starter today was former KOM and stage 9 winner, Paolo Bettini (Mapei), who was ill after yesterday.

12:14 CET - 18.0 km

And now there is another attack from Fred Rodriguez (Mapei), Fagnini, Arturas Kasputis (Ag2r) and Roland Meier (Cofidis) at the 18 kilometre point. Fagnini seems to be Telekom's designated hitter early on.

12:28 CET - 29.0 km

The four riders are caught and another group goes. Heulot (again), Baranowski (Banesto), Andreas Klier (Farm Frites) and Johansen (MCJ&J). Marc Wauters (Rabobank) bridges up and holds his own as the others are dropped. He should be able to take the first sprint at Robion (30 km) but Erik Zabel in green may have other ideas.

12:38 CET - 36.0 km

The results of the first sprint at Robion (30 km): 1. Marc Wauters (Rabobank) 6pts 2. Erik Zabel (Telekom) 4pts 3. Nico Mattan (Cofidis) 2pts. Erik Zabel continues to increase his lead in the green jersey competition, and he is now on 199 points, nearly double that of his nearest rival, Romans Vainsteins (Vini Caldirola).

Wauters' escape ends at km 33, and a new attack goes: Maarten Den Bakker (Rabobank), Christophe Agnolutto (Ag2r), Frank Hoj (FDJ), pursued by Banesto's Vicente Garcia-Acosta. They have a 24 second gap.

12:48 CET - 45.0 km

The three riders are caught once again by a very fast peloton. Over 45 kilometres covered already and the first hour is not yet up.

12:53 CET - 48.2 km

Four riders attacked on the first climb, the category 4 Cote de Saint-Hilaire. Jean-Cyril Robin (Bonjour), Roberto Conti (Vini Caldirola) and Jon Odriozola (Banesto) crossed the summit in that order, with Mapei's Daniele Nardello on fourth. They have an 18 second gap going over the top.

12:59 CET - 53.0 km

Daniele Nardello can no longer hold the front three and drops back to the bunch. Those left are Robin, Conti and Odriozola. Banesto are once more on the attack, while Telekom is setting the pace in the peloton. It's doubtful whether these three will last long.

13:08 CET - 57.0 km

Marc Lotz (Rabobank) bridges up to the three leaders to form a quartet, as the peloton strings along behind them (sorry).

13:14 CET - 63.0 km

This four are caught finally at km 58, and the peloton continues their rush forward. The next categorised climb is at 107 km (Cote de Cardache), so there is a good hour of racing to go before then. It seems as though Postal and Telekom are willing to just set a high tempo in the bunch, preventing anything serious from getting away.

The next attack comes from ONCE's Nico Jalabert and Bonjour's Didier Rous. They manage a 17 second gap.

There's a tailwind from the northwest, pushing the riders at 46 km/h. There is not a lot of sun, about 25 degrees - very uncharacteristic for Le Tour.

13:26 CET - 73.0 km

Jalabert has dropped Rous and is pressing on solo, with maybe a minute's lead to the peloton. Rous follows 20 seconds behind Jalabert.

13:38 CET - 81.0 km

A chase group has now formed, consisting of Robbie McEwen (Farm Frites) Pascal Herve (Polti), Frankie Andreu (USPS), Vicente Garcia-Acosta (Banesto), Marc Wauters (Rabo), N. Jalabert (ONCE), Alberto Elli (Telekom), Christophe Agnolutto (Ag2r), Stephane Heulot (FdJ), Anthony Morin (CA) and Francois Simon (Bonjour).

Note: it was Rous who dropped Jalabert, not the other way round.

13:45 CET - 83.0 km

Guido Trentin bridges up to the 11 chasers and this looks like a serious break, as many teams have riders represented. The best placed rider in the group is Rabobank's Marc Wauters, who is 17th overall at 12:15.

13:55 CET - 92.0 km

The gap is growing rapidly between the 12 plus one and the peloton, who may end up sprinting for 14th place today in Draguignan. Telekom, Rabobank, Banesto, US Postal, and ONCE are all represented in the break, meaning that it will be up to Marco Pantani's Mercatone Uno team and Roberto Heras/Fernando Escartin's Kelme team to chase things down, possibly with a little help from Mapei.

14.03 CET - 99.0 km

Total average speed after two hours of racing is 45.05 km/h, after the second hour was a little slower. The 12 have yet to make an impact on Rous' 1 minute lead.

14.12 CET - 107 km gone/78 km to go

Rous is riding well, and even increases his lead to the 12 chasers, aided by a nice tailwind. At the feedzone (99 km), Mapei were lessened by the retirement of Michele Bartoli, who was lying 37th at 24.26. Mapei had already received a blow before the start, after Paolo Bettini was forced to return home to Italy after suffering stomach problems.

14.24 CET - 115 km gone/70 km to go

The second climb (Cote de Cardache at 107 km) was won by Didier Rous (Bonjour) with Pascal Herve (Polti) and Guido Trentin (Vini Caldirola) following in the chase group, still one minute behind.

A day for the French perhaps, with Rous, Jalabert, Herve, Agnolutto, Heulot, Morin and Simon verus the six foreigners.

14.31 CET - 119 km gone/66 km to go

Four Mapei riders (Bettini, Bartoli, Steels, and McRae) have now withdrawn in the past two days as the result of food poisoning, and the others aren't feeling top notch at the moment. The hotel they stayed at two days ago might well have been the cause, as Ag2r have had problems as well: they stayed at the same place.

The gap to Didier Rous is coming down now, although the peloton remains at a constant 5 minutes plus.

14.42 CET - 126 km gone/59 km to go

Didier Rous has been caught by the 12 chasers, forming a Baker's Dozen at the front. Mercatone Uno have started to move forward in the peloton.

14.49 CET - 131 km gone/54 km to go

The bunch have started to chase a little, but it may well be that the 13 have too much already. However, they are attacking a little more now and if they lose their momentum, they will be snapped up from behind.

15.01 CET - 142 km gone/43.5 km to go

Banesto's Vicente Garcia-Acosta attacks, taking Pascal Herve and Nicolas Jalabert with him. Pursuing them are Heulot and Trentin, with the remaining 8 riders some distance behind. The peloton is being led now by US Postal.

15.04 CET - 143.5 km gone/42 km to go

The gap is at 14 seconds between the front three and the chasers.

Laurent Dufaux (Saeco) adds his name to the list of abandons - he was 66th this morning at 45:08.

15.11 CET - 148 km gone/37 km to go

There is a crash amongst the leaders - Rous is down, as is the motorbike. A fall on some spilled diesel on the road?

15.20 CET - 154 km gone/31 km to go

Now the front thirteen have really split, with three leaders (Jalabert, N., Herve, and Garcia Acosta), two chasers (Heulot and Trentin), then another six riders at 1'30 (Wauters, Elli Agnolutto, Morin, Simon), and Didier Rous and Frankie Andreu chasing a little way behind after a fall. The latter two are reportedly OK, however, Andreu sits and waits for the peloton who are some 8 minutes behind.

The sprint at Aups (154 km) was won by Garcia-Acosta, with Jalabert and Herve next in line.

In the peloton, David Millar called for medical attention from the race doctor.

15.31 CET - 165 km gone/20 km to go

N. Jalabert, Herve, Garcia-Acosta may be caught be Heulot and Trentin, who are just 14 seconds behind them. Another two and a half minutes down are Wauters, Elli Agnolutto, Morin, and Simon, while the bunch is a sizable 8'25 back. Rous is no-man's land now.

If it comes down to a sprint, Jalabert has the quickest legs, but he might be a bit tired from all the work he's done in the last few days.

15.37 CET - 170 km gone/15 km to go

Garcia-Acosta grabs the mountain points on the last category 4 climb, the Côte de l'Esparrus, from Nicolas Jalabert and Pascal Herve. Only 15 kilometres to go now, and Heulot and Trentin still haven't managed to bridge.

15.43 CET - 175.5 km gone/10 km to go

Jalabert has fallen in a heap after Vicente Garcia-Acosta attacks on his own, with just over 10 kilometres to go. If Heulot and Trentin can bridge, then they may have some chance of securing a French victory on the National Holiday.

15.47 CET - 179.5 km gone/6 km to go

Coming down into Draguignan, Vicente Garcia-Acosta is doing his absolute best to win a stage for Banesto, as he increases his lead to 18 seconds. It doesn't look too promising for the French at the moment!

As an aside, Rabobank's Marco Wauters has substantially increased his GC position (he was 17th at 12:15 today) by virtue of this break today.

15.51 CET - 183.5 km gone/2 km to go

2 kilometres to go now for the flying Spaniard, and he has got the win sewn up it seems. Jalabert and Herve are now 20 seconds behind.

16.00 CET - 185.5 km gone/0 km to go

Vicente Garcia-Acosta, a domestique for Banesto has won the 13th stage of the Tour de France in a solo breakaway.

Nicolas Jalabert leads out for second, dropping Pascal Herve at the finish. Next in are Guido Trentin (Vini Caldirola) and Stephane Heulot (FdJ). Robbie McEwen (Farm Frites) is the best of the next group, beating Francois Simon to the line.

In the peloton, Richard Virenque tries an attack but is closed down by US Postal.

Erik Zabel wins the bunch sprint for 12th, claiming some more points toward his green jersey. Marc Wauters has moved up to 4th overall as a result of this breakaway.


1 Vicente Garcia-Acosta (Spa) Banesto 		     4.03.02 (45.79 km/h)
2 Nicolas Jalabert (Fra) O.N.C.E.-Deutsche Bank 	0.25 
3 Pascal Herve (Fra) Team Polti 			0.27 
4 Guido Trentin (Ita) Vini Caldirola-Sidermec 		0.57 
5 Stéphane Heulot (Fra) La Francaise Des Jeux  
6 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Farm Frites 			4.00 
7 François Simon (Fra) Bonjour  
8 Anthony Morin (Fra) Credit Agricole  
9 Christophe Agnolutto (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance  
10 Marc Wauters (Bel) Rabobank  
11 Alberto Elli (Ita) Team Deutsche Telekom  
12 Erik Zabel (Ger) Team Deutsche Telekom 

General classification after stage 13:

1 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service   	    53.03.29 (41.05 km/h)
2 Jan Ullrich (Ger) Team Deutsche Telekom		4.55	
3 Joseba Beloki (Spa) Festina				5.52	
4 Marc Wauters (Bel) Rabobank				6.03	
5 Christophe Moreau (Fra) Festina			6.53	
6 Manuel Beltran (Spa) Mapei-Quick Step			7.25	
7 Richard Virenque (Fra) Team Polti			8.28 

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