67th Paris - Nice - 2.HC

France, March 5 - 12, 2000

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Stage 1 - March 5: Bois de Vincennes - ITT, 7.9 km

The day of broken bikes

Laurent Brochard's win of the first Paris - Nice stage in the Bois de Vincennes in Paris was not only a come back for a rider disgraced by the Festina scandal two seasons ago, but also the first major victory for the new French Jean Delatour team. An important milestone on the way to Tour de France participation this summer, backed by Eddy Seigneur in eighth position.

But the discussion of the day was not only about the slim margin - 0.84 seconds to Chris Boardman but the fact that three of Boardman's team mates, Stuart O'Grady, Magnus Bäckstedt and Anthony Morin, fell due to cracked frames on their brand new Look ITT bicycles.

Sports director Roger Legeay said "I have never seen anything like this before. The bikes were delivered the week before the race and they were tried and checked before the race. It is a wonder that no one was badly hurt."

Chris Boardman had another kind of metal in his bike frame and the ITT up the Col d'Eze next Saturday will be raced on ordinary road race bikes.

"It is very serious. For my part, I had a different bicycle, same brand but of a different material (aluminium)."

About the race he said: "I lost in the turns and at the halfway, I was five seconds behind. At the finish it was only one. But I have won races with smaller margins. This time luck was not on my sifde. That's sports."

"This bad day should not hurt our morale. I am sure that we have a winning team. Stuart O' Grady will do well in the sprints, Anthony Morin and Fabrice Gougot will go try for escapes and Bobby Julich and Jonathan Vaughters will be in front in the mountains. And for my own part, this loss will not weigh down on me, I might try something more during the rest of the race…"


1. Laurent Brochard (Fra) Jean Delatour             		9.32 (49.720 kp/h)
2. Chris Boardman (GB) Crédit Agricole              		0.00.84
3. Lauri Aus (Est) Ag2R Prevoyance                  		0.04
4. George Hincapie (USA) US Postal Service          		0.05
5. Gilles Maignan (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance             		0.06
6. Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) Ag2R Prevoyance              		0.06
7. Andreas Klöden (Ger) Deutsche Telekom            		0.06
8. Eddy Seigneur (Fra) Jean Delatour                		0.07
9. Frankie Andreu (USA) US Postal Service           		0.08
10. Philippe Gaumont (Fra) Cofidis                  		0.08
11. Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Crédit Agricole                        0.08
12. Jonathan Vaughters (USA) Crédit Agricole			0.09
13. Francisco Mancebo Perez (Spa) Banesto			0.09
14. Thomas Brozyna (Pol) Banesto				0.10
15. Patrick Jonker (Ned) US Postal Service			0.11
16. Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank				0.11
17. Erik Dekker (Ned) Rabobank					0.12
18. Rik Verbrugghe (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.12
19. Aitor Garmendia Arbilla (Spa) Banesto			0.12
20. François Simon (Fra) Bonjour-Toupargel			0.12
21. Laurent Dufaux (Swi) Saeco-Valli & Valli			0.13
23. Bobby Julich (USA) Crédit Agricole				0.13
24. Viatsjeslav Ekimov (Rus) US Postal Service 			0.14
30. Andrei Tchmil (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.17
31. Jacky Durand (Fra) Lotto-Adecco                        	0.17
34. Daniele Nardello (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step			0.19 
37. Tom Steels (Bel) Mapei-Quick Step				0.20
38. Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) Deutsche Telekom			0.20
43. Nico Mattan (Bel) Cofidis					0.22
48. Dario Frigo (Ita) Fassa Bortolo				0.22
51. PAlessandro Petacchi (Ita) Fassa Bortolo			0.24
54. Mario Aerts (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.27
57. Axel Merckx (Bel) Mapei-Quick Step				0.28
60. Paul Van Hyfte (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.28
63. Salvatore Commesso (Ita) Saeco-Valli & Valli		0.29
65. Thierry Marichal (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.29
69. Peter Farazijn (Bel) Cofidis				0.30
71. Bart Leysen (Bel) Mapei-Quick Step				0.32
82. Udo Boelts (Ger) Deutsche Telekom              		0.34
92. Chris Peers (Bel) Cofidis					0.37
104. Kurt Van Lancker (Bel) Lotto-Adecco			0.40
105. Giuliano Figueras (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step			0.40
112. Richard Virenque (Fra) Polti				0.43
122. Geert Verheyen (Bel) Lotto-Adecco				0.48
135. Jo Planckaert (Bel) Cofidis				0.56
140. Steve De Wolf (Bel) Cofidis			 	1.00
143. Francesco Casagrande (Ita) Vini Caldirola-Sidermec 	1.06
157. Anthony Morin (Fra) Crédit Agricole                  	1.53