Stage 2 Results

1. Mario Cipollini (Ita)               05:26:35
2. Giovanni Lombardi (Ita)
3. Djamolidin Abdoujaparov (Ouz)
4. Fabio Baldato (Ita)
5. Frdric Moncassin (Fra)
6. Bo Hamburger (Dan)
7. Laurent Jalabert (Fra)
8. Francesco Frattini (Ita)
9. Bjarne Riis (Dan)
10. Alexandre Gontchenkov (Ukr)
11. Bruno Thibout (Fra)
12. Laurent Madouas (Fra)
13. Paolo Lanfranchi (Ita)
14. Kaspars Ozers (Let)
15. Laurent Brochard (Fra)
16. Silvio Martinello (Ita)
17. Gianni Bugno (Ita)
18. Andrea Tafi (Ita)
19. Gianluca Bortolami (Ita)
20. Evgueni Berzin (Rus)
21. Enrico Zaina (Ita)
22. Miguel Indurain (Esp)
23. Tony Rominger (Sui)
24. Eric Boyer (Fra)
25. Zenon Jaskula (Pol)
26. Melchor Mauri (Esp)
27. Dirk Baldinger (All)
28. Marco Pantani (Ita)
29. Alex Zulle (Sui)
30. Johan Bruyneel (Bel)
31. Fernando Escartin (Esp)
32. Claudio Chiappucci (Ita)
33. Roberto Petito (Ita)
34. Armand de las Cuevas (Fra)
35. Andrei Tchmil (Rus)
36. Serguei Outschakov (Rus)
37. Maurizio Fondriest (Ita)
38. Jesper Skibby (Dan)               +18 secs.
39. Jacky Durand (Fra)                +19 secs.
40. Denis Zanette (Ita)
41. Lars Michaelsen (Dan)
42. Frankie Andreu (USA)
43. Erik Zabel (All)
44. Christophe Capelle (Fra)
45. Arsenio Gonzales (Esp)
46. Georg Totschnig (Aut)
47. Alvaro Mejia (Col)
48. Eddy Bouwmans (P-B)
49. Laurent Dufaux (Sui)
50. Guido Bontempi (Ita)
51. Thierry Marie (Fra)
52. Marino Alonso (Esp)
53. Rolf Aldag (All)
54. Mariano Rojas (Esp)
55. Johan Museeuw (Bel)
56. Giuseppe Citterio (Ita)
57. Maximilian Sciandri (Ita)
58. Angelo Lecchi (Ita)
59. Federico Munoz (Col)
60. Javier Mauleon (Esp)
61. Jelle Nijdam (P-B)
62. Yvon Ledanois (Fra)
63. Thierry Laurent (Fra)
64. Viatcheslav Ekimov (Rus)
65. Andrea Peron (Ita)
66. Jim Van de Laer (Bel)
67. Arturas Kasputis (Lit)19.
68. Francois Simon (Fra)
69. Herminio Diaz Zabala (Esp)
70. Miguel Arroyo (Mex)
71. Lance Armstrong (USA)
72. Marc Sergeant (Bel)
73. Vladimir Poulnikov (Rus)
74. Pavel Tonkov (Rus)
75. Jens Heppner (All)
76. Andrea Ferrigato (Ita)
77. Giovanni Fidanza (Ita)
78. Udo Bolts (All)
79. Thomas Davy (Fra)
78. Jean-Franois Bernard (Fra)
81. Jean-Cyril Robin (Fra)
82. Gerard Rue (Fra)
83. Steve Bauer (Can)
84. Arvis Piziks (Lit)
85. Bruno Cenghialta (Ita)
86. Jaan Kirsipuu (Est)
87. Gabriele Colombo (Ita)
88. Fabio Casartelli (Ita)
89. Vicente Aparicio (Esp)
90. Beat Zberg (Sui)
91. Olaf Ludwig (All)
92. Davide Perona (Ita)
93. Bruno Boscardin (Ita)
94. Francois Lemarchand (Fra)
95. Fabian Jeker (Sui)
96. Thierry Gouvenou (Fra)
97. Maarten Den Bakker (P-B)
98. Wilfried Peeters (Bel)
99. Alberto Elli (Ita)
100. Erik Breukink (P-B)
101. Richard Virenque (Fra)
102. Stephen Hodge (Aus)
103. Erik Dekker (P-B)
104. Jose Angel Vidal (Esp)
105. Hendrik Redant (Bel)
106. Didier Rous (Fra)
107. Wilfried Nelissen (Bel)
108. Francisco Cabello (Esp)
109. Dimitri Konyshev (Rus)
110. Oscar Pellicioli (Ita)
111. Marc Wauters (Bel)
112. Rossano Brasi (Ita)
113. Carlo Bomans (Bel)
114. Herman Frison (Bel)
115. Nicola Loda (Ita)
116. Massimo Podenzana (Ita)
117. Franco Vona (Ita)
118. Jose Ramon Uriarte (Esp)
119. Mauro Bettin (Ita)
120. Marcello Siboni (Ita)
121. Ivan Gotti (Ita)
122. Gilles Talmant (Fra)
123. Jose Ramon Gonzalez-Arrieta (Esp)
124. Laudelino Cubino (Esp)
125. Bruno Cornillet (Fra)
126. Antonio Politano (Ita)
127. Peter Farazijn (Bel)
128. Gilles Bouvard (Fra)
129. Christophe Mengin (Fra)
130. Leonardo Sierra (Vn)
131. Leon Van Bon (P-B)
132. Tristan Hoffman (P-B)
133. Gianluca Gorini (Ita)
134. Aitor Garmendia (Esp)
135. Marco Serpellini (Ita)
136. Wladimir Belli (Ita)
137. Jean-Pierre Bourgeot (Fra)
138. Pascal Lance (Fra)
139. Alberto Volpi (Ita)
140. Stephen Swart (N-Z)
141. Nelson Rodriguez (Col)
142. Alessio Galletti (Ita)
143. Flavio Vanzella (Ita)
144. Dante Rezze (Fra)
145. Rosario Fina (Ita)
146. Sean Yates (G-B)
147. Hernan Buenahora (Col)
148. Gilles Delion (Fra)
149. Giancarlo Perini (Ita)
150. Mauro Radaelli (Ita)
151. Rolf Jaermann (Sui)
152. Mario Scirea (Ita)
153. Sammie Moreels (Bel)
154. Fausto Dotti (Ita)
155. Francis Moreau (Fra)
156. Alessandro Bertolini (Ita)
157. Mario De Clercq (Bel)
158. Eros Poli (Ita)
159. Gian Matteo Fagnini (Ita)             1:03
160. Juan Cesar Aguirre (Col)              1:03
161. Angel Camargo (Col)                   1:03
162. Luis Maria Diaz de Otazu (Esp)        1:03
163. Bart Voskamp (P-B)                    1:03
164. Jeroen Blijlevens (P-B)               1:24
165. Angel Edo (Esp)
166. Eric Vanderaerden (Bel)               1:40
167. Hector Castano (Col)                  1:59
168. Davide Cassani (Ita)                  1:59
169. Mario Chiesa (Ita)                    1:59
170. Rene Foucachon (Fra)                  1:59
171. Massimo Donati (Ita)                  1:59
172. Mario Manzoni (Ita)                   1:59
173. Sergio Barbero (Ita)                  1:59
174. Marco Milesi (Ita)                    1:59
175. Jan Svorada (Svq)                     1:59
176. Pascal Herve (Fra)                    1:59
177. Dario Bottaro (Ita)                   1:59
178. Gilberto Simoni (Ita)                 2:06
179. Frans Maassen (P-B)                   2:06
180. Neil Stephens (Aus)                   2:33
181. Peter De Clercq (Bel)                 2:33
182. Massimiliano Lelli (Ita)              5:17
183. Emmanuel Magnien (Fra)                6:37
184. Carmelo Miranda (Esp)                 6:37
185. Rudy Verdonck (Bel)                   6:37
186. Stefano Colago (Ita)                 12:14

Abandoned:
   Eddy Seigneur (Fra)
   Roberto Conti (Ita)

General Classification after Stage 2

1. Laurent Jalabert (Fra/ONCE) 11:24:50 2. Laurent Brochard (Fra) +05 secs. 3. Bruno Thibout (Fra) 12 4. Jacky Durand (Fra) 22 5. Thierry Laurent (Fra) 24 6. Melchor Mauri (Esp) 25 7. Fabio Baldato (Ita) 26 8. Alex Zulle (Sui) 26 9. Arsenio Gonzales (Esp) 26 10. Frankie Andreu (USA) 27 11. Tony Rominger (Sui) 29 12. Serguei Outschakov (Rus) 31 13. Giovanni Lombardi (Ita) 31 14. Johan Bruyneel (Bel) 32 15. Miguel Indurain (Esp) 34 16. Yvon Ledanois (Fra) 35 17. Vicente Aparicio (Esp) 35 18. Laurent Madouas (Fra) 35 19. Dirk Baldinger (All) 36 20. Djamolidin Abdoujaparov (Ouz) 37 21. Claudio Chiappucci (Ita) 40 22. Javier Mauleon (Esp) 40 23. Fernando Escartin (Esp) 41 24. Thierry Marie (Fra) 41 25. Eddy Bouwmans (P-B) 43 26. Ivan Gotti (Ita) 43 27. Bjarne Riis (Dan) 44 28. Alexandre Gontchenkov (Ukr) 45 29. Andrea Ferrigato (Ita) 46 30. Gabriele Colombo (Ita) 47 31. Francis Moreau (Fra) 49 32. Mario Cipollini (Ita) 49 33. Andrea Tafi (Ita) 50 34. Bo Hamburger (Dan) 51 35. Marco Pantani (Ita) 53 36. Stephen Swart (N-Z) 54 37. Lance Armstrong (USA) 55 38. Udo Bolts (All) 56 39. Jean-Cyril Robin (Fra) 57 40. Giovanni Fidanza (Ita) 1:00 41. Mariano Rojas (Esp) 1:01 42. Andrei Tchmil (Rus) 1:01 43. Gianni Bugno (Ita) 1:02 44. Enrico Zaina (Ita) 1:02 45. Rolf Aldag (All) 1:02 46. Laurent Dufaux (Sui) 1:03 47. Bruno Boscardin (Ita) 1:04 48. Silvio Martinello (Ita) 1:04 49. Antonio Politano (Ita) 1:05 50. Evgueni Berzin (Rus) 1:10 51. Maurizio Fondriest (Ita) 1:11 52. Jean-Francois Bernard (Fra) 1:11 53. Zenon Jaskula (Pol) 1:11 54. Beat Zberg (Sui) 1:12 55. Pascal Lance (Fra) 1:13 56. Francesco Frattini (Ita) 1:13 57. Armand de las Cuevas (Fra) 1:14 58. Maximilian Sciandri (Ita) 1:14 59. Erik Zabel (All) 1:15 60. Jim Van de Laer (Bel) 1:15 61. Erik Breukink (P-B) 1:16 62. Lars Michaelsen (Dan) 1:16 63. Jens Heppner (All) 1:16 64. Alvaro Mejia (Col) 1:17 65. Jose Ramon Uriarte (Esp) 1:17 66. Paolo Lanfranchi (Ita) 1:17 67. Marc Sergeant (Bel) 1:19 68. Wilfried Peeters (Bel) 1:20 69. Gianluca Bortolami (Ita) 1:21 70. Kaspars Ozers (Let) 1:21 71. Frederic Moncassin (Fra) 1:22 72. Francois Simon (Fra) 1:23 73. Pavel Tonkov (Rus) 1:23 74. Andrea Peron (Ita) 1:23 75. Richard Virenque (Fra) 1:24 76. Bruno Cenghialta (Ita) 1:26 77. Arvis Piziks (Lit) 1:27 78. Christophe Capelle (Fra) 1:27 79. Nicola Loda (Ita) 1:28 80. Thomas Davy (Fra) 1:28 81. Wilfried Nelissen (Bel) 1:28 82. Steve Bauer (Can) 1:29 83. Viatcheslav Ekimov (Rus) 1:29 84. Roberto Petito (Ita) 1:29 85. Francisco Cabello (Esp) 1:29 86. Johan Museeuw (Bel) 1:31 87. Francois Lemarchand (Fra) 1:32 88. Christophe Mengin (Fra) 1:33 89. Sean Yates (G-B) 1:35 90. Marc Wauters (Bel) 1:35 91. Didier Rous (Fra) 1:36 92. Marcello Siboni (Ita) 1:36 93. Mario Scirea (Ita) 1:37 94. Olaf Ludwig (All) 1:38 95. Franco Vona (Ita) 1:38 96. Vladimir Poulnikov (Rus) 1:44 97. Rossano Brasi (Ita) 1:45 98. Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) 1:46 99. Eric Boyer (Fra) 1:47 100. Federico Munoz (Col) 1:48 101. Massimo Podenzana (Ita) 1:49 102. Mauro Bettin (Ita) 1:49 103. Alberto Elli (Ita) 1:50 104. Fabio Casartelli (Ita) 1:53 105. Jose Ramon Gonzalez-Arrieta (Esp) 1:53 106. Carlo Bomans (Bel) 1:55 107. Flavio Vanzella (Ita) 1:56 108. Leon Van Bon (P-B) 1:58 109. Gilles Bouvard (Fra) 1:59 110. Jelle Nijdam (P-B) 2:00 111. Gerard Rue (Fra) 2:00 112. Denis Zanette (Ita) 2:01 113. Herminio Diaz Zabala (Esp) 2:01 114. Arturas Kasputis (Lit) 2:02 115. Dimitri Konyshev (Rus) 2:03 116. Aitor Garmendia (Esp) 2:04 117. Jesper Skibby (Dan) 2:05 118. Thierry Gouvenou (Fra) 2:07 119. Sammie Moreels (Bel) 2:07 120. Hendrik Redant (Bel) 2:08 121. Fausto Dotti (Ita) 2:11 122. Guido Bontempi (Ita) 2:11 123. Alessandro Bertolini (Ita) 2:13 124. Alessio Galletti (Ita) 2:14 125. Georg Totschnig (Aut) 2:14 126. Leonardo Sierra (Vn) 2:15 127. Angelo Lecchi (Ita) 2:15 128. Giancarlo Perini (Ita) 2:15 129. Jose Angel Vidal (Esp) 2:16 130. Herman Frison (Bel) 2:17 131. Gianluca Gorini (Ita) 2:18 132. Erik Dekker (P-B) 2:19 133. Stephen Hodge (Aus) 2:19 134. Gilles Talmant (Fra) 2:24 135. Dante Rezze (Fra) 2:26 136. Maarten Den Bakker (P-B) 2:26 137. Oscar Pellicioli (Ita) 2:30 138. Laudelino Cubino (Esp) 2:32 139. Gilles Delion (Fra) 2:33 140. Rolf Jaermann (Sui) 2:35 141. Nelson Rodriguez (Col) 2:41 142. Alberto Volpi (Ita) 2:42 143. Peter Farazijn (Bel) 2:47 144. Luis Maria Diaz de Otazu (Esp) 2:49 145. Eros Poli (Ita) 2:49 146. Miguel Arroyo (Mex) 2:52 147. Hernan Buenahora (Col) 2:53 148. Massimo Donati (Ita) 3:00 149. Davide Cassani (Ita) 3:00 150. Juan Cesar Aguirre (Col) 3:00 151. Pascal Herve (Fra) 3:06 152. Mauro Radaelli (Ita) 3:09 153. Marino Alonso (Esp) 3:13 154. Bart Voskamp (P-B) 3:16 155. Gian Matteo Fagnini (Ita) 3:16 156. Marco Milesi (Ita) 3:19 157. Jean-Pierre Bourgeot (Fra) 3:20 158. Mario De Clercq (Bel) 3:24 159. Frans Maassen (P-B) 3:24 160. Neil Stephens (Aus) 3:27 161. Eric Vanderaerden (Bel) 3:30 162. Mario Manzoni (Ita) 3:41 163. Tristan Hoffman (P-B) 3:41 164. Fabian Jeker (Sui) 3:45 165. Angel Camargo (Col) 3:48 166. Mario Chiesa (Ita) 3:52 167. Dario Bottaro (Ita) 3:52 168. Angel Edo (Esp) 3:58 169. Gilberto Simoni (Ita) 4:17 170. Rosario Fina (Ita) 4:39 171. Ren Foucachon (Fra) 4:56 172. Bruno Cornillet (Fra) 5:20 173. Sergio Barbero (Ita) 5:45 174. Giuseppe Citterio (Ita) 6:01 175. Davide Perona (Ita) 6:03 176. Jeroen Blijlevens (P-B) 6:07 177. Wladimir Belli (Ita) 6:13 178. Marco Serpellini (Ita) 6:29 179. Massimiliano Lelli (Ita) 7:30 180. Jan Svorada (Svq) 8:05 181. Peter De Clercq (Bel) 8:14 182. Emmanuel Magnien (Fra) 9:11 183. Hector Castano (Col) 11:51 184. Carmelo Miranda (Esp) 12:55 185. Rudy Verdonck (Bel) 13:11 186. Stefano Colage (Ita) 15:27

7:48 PM - CASTORAMA PUTS HOPES ON TUESDAY'S TEAM TIME TRIAL

Although Castorama lost the yellow jersey on Monday, the team's manager said he still had high hopes for the team time trial on Tuesday. "Usually we end up between third and sixth place," he said. Clocking a good time in the 67 km ride between Mayenne and Alencon is considered to be crucial for those set to win the race.

5:58 PM - Three Frenchman on Top

The stage between Perros-Guirec and Vitre in Brittany ended with victories by three French riders. Laurent Jalabert, leader of ONCE, donned the leader's yellow jersey. Laurent Brochard of Festina placed second, just 5 secs behind, followed by Bruno Thibout in the Castorama team. Thibout is trailing Jalabert by 12 secs.

4:49 PM - Cipollini Wins Stage

Italian Mario Cipollini won the sprint finish at Vitre, clocking in a 5 min 26 secs. He was followed by another Italian Giovanni Lombardi who came in second. The rider from Uzbekestan, Djamolidine Aboujaparov, was third. Frenchman Laurent Jalabert takes the overall leader's yellow jersey.

3:01 PM - French Favorite Wins Sprint

Frenchman Laurent Jalabert, leader of ONCE, won the second intermediary sprint at Saint-Meen-le-Grand, giving him an extra six points. He started the race just 7 sec behind the overall leader, Jacky Durand. After coming in third on an earlier sprint on Monday, Jalabert is now in a good position to take the yellow jersey off the back of Durand at the finish.

2:05 PM - French Champion Abandons

The champion of France, Eddy Seigneur, abandoned the Tour on Monday at the feed zone at Ploeuc-sur-Lie, 80 km from the start. He had difficult time when the pack took off from Perros-Guirec Monday morning, and after 40 km dropped back from the pack. Sufferring from tendonitis, he was being treated by a doctor. Seigneur is the second rider to drop out following the withdrawal of Englishman Chris Boardman during the prologue. Both cyclists race for Gan.

1:31 PM - France Retains the Polka Dot Jersey

Frenchman Francois Simon of Castorama retained the best climber's red dotted jersey after passing second over the summit at Pommerit-Jaudy. This was the only slope in Monday's stage. The next 4th category slopes come on Wednesday when the pack races between Alencon and Le Havre in Normandy.

12:33 AM - The Racers Compete in Another Sprint

Djamolidine Abouaparov, the leader of Novell, won the intermediary sprint at Pommerit-Jaudy just over 15 km into today's stage. The racer from Uzbekestan, who finished third in the first stage on Sunday, is considered to be one of the best sprinters in the Tour. Frenchman Gerard Rue, a teammate of Spaniard Miguel Indurain, is leading the pack as they head towards Vitre.

11:39 AM - The Tour Cruises Along the Brittany Coast

A pack of 188 racers took off shortly after 11:00 from Perros Guirec in Brittany. The 235.5 km course will take them along the northern coast of Brittany to the town of Vitre. After yesterday's storms, the pack headed out under sunny skies, much to the relief of cyclists and spectators. The cyclists are expected to reach Vitre at 17:05, based on an average speed of 40 km/h.

09:59 AM - The Tour Heats Up

The racers continue their route in Britanny from the port of Perros Guirec to Vitre this morning, with Jacky Durand holding the yellow jersey. But tour commentators are focusing on another Frenchman, Laurent Jalabert. Jalabert finished strong yesterday in a closing sprint and is only seven seconds behind Durand in the overall standings.

From Jeremy Whittle, Vitre, France

available from source at http://www.WinningMag.COM/winning/

In a remarkable reversal of fortune, just a year after his career threatening crash in the opening stage of the 1994 Tour de France, French hero Laurent Jalabert assumed overall leadership of the 1995 edition on the 235.5 km stage to Vitre. On an undulating route that saw the abandon of GAN's Eddy Seigneur, Jalabert's ONCE team brilliantly controlled the peloton to ensure that the Frenchman picked up sufficient time bonsuses to overhaul Castorama's Jacky Durand.

After another cloudy start on the northern coast of Brittany at Perros Guirec, fierce racing began almost immediately, as Motorola's Frankie Andreu, in an attempt to make up his five seconds deficit on Durand, attacked after just 3 kilometres. But he was swept up by an active field just five kilometres short of his objective, the sprint bonus at Pommerit Jaudy.

In fact, the ONCE, Novell and Mercatone teams battled uphill to the 'hot spot' and Uzbekistan's Djamilodin Abdoujaparov edged out Mario Cipollini and Jalabert, to force the Frenchman to endure a tense wait until the next opportunity, 130 kms further up the road.

With French national champion Seigneur climbing off at the feed zone, suffering from acute tendinitis, the battle for seconds intensified as the 188 man field neared the second intermediate sprint. Jalabert's ONCE team knew that they could usher their man into the yellow jersey, prior to the team time trial, if he took the six bonus seconds on offer.

The Frenchman, winner already this year of Paris-Nice, Milan San Remo and the Fleche Wallonne, did not fail them and his victory under the banner at St Meen Le Grand, brought him the first maillot jaune of his six year professional career. With ONCE shrugging aside any attempts by the beleaguered Castorama squad to pull Durand up to the front, Jalabert's assured display dominated the closing stages of the race, in spite of a two-up breakaway comprising Brescialat's last-minute inclusion Eric Vanderaerden and Novell veteran Frans Maassen.

16 kms from the finish, the pair were reeled in and, as ONCE and the Lotto team strung the field out, the speed grew ever more intense on the fast run in to Vitre. Then, on a slight rise just 9kms from the line, the peloton, in a move initiated by Gewiss' Francesco Frattini, split in two with a group of 38 riders moving clear of the field.

Jalabert, Tony Rominger, Evgeni Berzin, Gianni Bugno, Marco Pantani, Alex Zulle and, naturally, Miguel Indurain were all there while outgoing yellow jersey Durand and among others, Motorola pair Lance Armstrong and Alvaro Meija battled to limit their losses.

With the break almost half a minute ahead, Mapei's Andrea Tafi and Lampre's Maurizio Fondriest attacked in turn, until, as the group flew under the kilometre kite, Frederic Moncassin of Novell began pumping his way towards the finish in pursuit of a last-ditch attack by Lotto's Andrei Tchmil.

Few would have picked out Mario Cipollini the 'Lion King' as a likely victor as the Italian has complained of a sore throat since the race began. But the long-haired sprint king burst towards the line in the closing 200 metres to win by half a length, from Polti's Giovanni Lombardi, his old rival Abdu' and the previous day's winner, Fabio Baldato.

QUOTES OF THE DAY

Laurent Jalabert:"It's a happy anniversary for me one year after the worst day of my career. The team were really strong today and made it possible for me to take the overall lead. To be a Frenchman and wear the yellow jersey, well, it's the best!"

Mario Cipollini:"I didn't feel too good this morning so I don't really know how or why I was able to win, but I don't care. I'm happy if I win with or without a fever. It's my 16th win of the season not my 15th. Just because they disqualified one of my wins at the Giro d'Italia doesn't mean it wasn't a perfectly good win..."

MOUNTAINS JERSEY - FRANCOIS SIMON

POINTS JERSEY - DJAMOLIDIN ABDOUJAPAROV

From http://www.WinningMag.COM/winning/

Vitre, France, July 3rd 1995.

So Motorola tried but failed to snatch the yellow jersey in the opening hour of today's race. Now the American team will struggle to make up Frankie Andreu's 27 second time deficit on Laurent Jalabert in the 67 km stage 3 team time trial, where the Frenchman's ONCE team are certain to acquit themselves well.

Perhaps more damaging for Motorola in the long-term was the absence of any of the team's experienced professionals from the closing break on the road to Vitre. The squad have always intended to perform well in the team time trial, they were second in the test last year, but this time around it looks as if the stage win (as opposed to the maillot jaune) is the best they can hope for.

The Tour can be won and lost during these opening salvos. Already Laurent Jalabert has demonstrated his continuing excellent form and the stage to Lannion was marked by Miguel Indurain and Tony Rominger's seemingly effortless presence at the head of affairs during the frantic finale. Gewiss' Evgeni Berzin has been quick to show his face at the front of the field and there is no doubt that Alex Zulle is once again the podium contender that he was once thought to be.

They used to say that those with hopes of Tour success cannot afford to have a single bad day 'un jour sans' in the three week race. The Tour de France in the 1990's is unforgiving of even a single bad moment.