Stage 6 - July 6: Vitre - Tours, 198.5 km
Start time: 12:54
The Tour ventures further eastward with the stage from Vitré to Tours. The flat course will once again suit the sprinter's teams, who will be milking the first week for all it's worth to gain exposure. Of course, the usual suspects will try and attack.
Weather: It is a beautiful sunny day in Vitre, with not too much wind. Temperatures are around 20-25 degrees C, so conditions are perfect for racing.
The word is that ONCE will ride tempo today, as they did yesterday to defend Laurent Jalbert's yellow jersey. However, they will not expend too much of the team. Despite the fact that yesterday's stage was a fairly regulation sprint stage, the top ONCE riders, Jalabert and Olano as well as Banesto's Alex Zulle, all lost 8 seconds to Ullrich, Armstrong, Vandenbroucke, Boogerd, and Julich who were in the front finishing group. This was because of a small gap between Olano and the Kivilev in front of him at the finish - another bike length, and he would have saved eight seconds. As we know, eight seconds can be an important time gap in the Tour.
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