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23rd Tro Bro Léon - 1.1

Lannilis, France, April 16, 2006

2005 Results   Results    Past winners

Renshaw scores first pro win

By Jean-François Quénet

Two hours prior to the start of Tro Bro Léon, Mark Renshaw received a text message from a French friend predicting his first pro win today and he answered that he only needed some luck. He got both. In the charming Breton village of Lannilis, he succeeded his fellow compatriot Baden Cooke who also claimed that "little Paris-Roubaix" back in his good old days in 2002. "It's sensational", 23-year-old Renshaw exclaimed afterwards.

The first breakaway went after 60 kilometres. Four riders made it: Anthony Ravard (Bouygues Telecom), Cédric Hervé (Bretagne-Jean Floc'h), Christophe Riblon (Ag2r) and Sergey Matveyev (Panaria). They stayed away for 80km and got a maximum lead of 2'30. They got caught just before the final circuit at km 140. Another three riders attacked after them: Franck Renier (Bouygues Telecom), Gilles Canouët (Agritubel) and Bart Scheirlinckx (Cofidis), soon rejoined by David Lelay (Bretagne-Jean Floc'h). The Breton riders were obviously highly motivated on their home soil.

But with less than 10km to go, there was no more breakaway. Attacks occurred from everywhere. Jimmy Engoulvent of Crédit Agricole was one of the most active riders, but it was his teammate Mark Renshaw who made it solo with 2 km to go. Three Ag2r guys came across but couldn't catch him before the line.

"I didn't want the race to finish in a sprint," Renshaw said. "I knew Jimmy Casper was there and what he did on Thursday in GP Denain, a race where I was second to him last year. Riding the classics recently, I didn't specifically work on my speed and this was an uphill finish, which isn't what I'm the best at. So I was more content to attack."

The young man from Bathurst, NSW, did the right thing. It was a relief for him to put his hands up. "It's been a long time since I won a race," he said. "Almost three years. It sort of became a question to myself whether or not I could win a pro race. Today I had bad legs at the start. I had no good sensations until we hit the final circuit. I was in the front group with Jimmy Engoulvent and Sébastien Hinault, I asked them what we should do. They said they weren't feeling good either but on the last dirt road section, the peloton caught the escapees, I accelerated and managed to get a 100 metre gap. I hold on for the last two kilometres and that was it."

Renshaw will continue with Paris-Camembert on Tuesday. "I've been going since the Tour Down Under and I think I need a break," he said. He's still unsure about riding the Tour of Italy again this year. "And I'm on the long list for the Tour de France, but I don't know..."

Finishing 5th, Lilian Jégou of Française des Jeux retained his lead at the French cup but has missed a win opportunity again. After Chris Sutton in Cholet, Renshaw is the second Australian to win a French cup race. France don't have more winners than that.

Results - 191.7 km

1 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Crédit Agricole)                  4.46.54 (40.1 km/h)
2 Alexandre Usov (Blr) Ag2R Prevoyance                    0.01
3 Jean-Patrick Nazon (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance
4 Lloyd Mondory (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance
5 Lilian Jegou (Fra) Française Des Jeux
6 Stéphane Bonsergent (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
7 William Bonnet (Fra) Credit Agricole
8 Jean-Luc Delpech (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
9 Benoît Sinner (Fra) Agritubel
10 Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Omnibike Dynamo Moscow
11 Arnaud Labbe (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
12 Rony Martias (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
13 Sébastien Hinault (Fra) Credit Agricole
14 Ian Mcleod (RSA) Française Des Jeux
15 Jimmy Engoulvent (Fra) Credit Agricole
16 Yoann Le Boulanger (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
17 John Gadret (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance
18 Christophe Agnolutto (Fra) Agritubel
19 Renaud Dion (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance
20 Charles Guilbert (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
21 Cedric Coutouly (Fra) Agritubel
22 Gilles Canouet (Fra) Agritubel
23 Emilien Benoit Berges (Fra) Auber 93
24 Frédéric Guesdon (Fra) Française Des Jeux
25 Peter Velits (Svk) Team Konica Minolta
26 Jimmy Casper (Fra) Cofidis
27 Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Cofidis
28 Sébastien Duret (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
29 Cédric Herve (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
30 Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis
31 Tristan Valentin (Fra) Cofidis
32 Jeremy Hunt (GBr) Unibet.Com
33 John Nilsson (Swe) Auber 93
34 Franck Renier (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
35 Camille Bouquet (Fra) Unibet.Com
36 Stéphane Petilleau (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
37 Jean Mespoulede (Fra) Auber 93
38 Yohann Gene (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
39 Edgardo Simon (Arg) Selle Italia - Serramenti Diquigiovanni
40 David Lelay (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
41 Cyrille Monnerais (Fra) Française Des Jeux
42 Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis
43 Maxime Mederel (Fra) Auber 93
44 Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel) Jartazi-7Mobile
45 Saïd Haddou (Fra) Auber 93
46 Ivan Terenine (Rus) Omnibike Dynamo Moscow
47 Antoine Dalibard (Fra) Bretagne-Jean Floc'h
48 Nicolas Roche (Irl) Cofidis
49 Benjamin Johnson (Aus) Agritubel
50 Moises Aldape Chavez (Mex) Ceramica Panaria - Navigare
51 Anthony Ravard (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
52 Giovanny Baez (Col) Atom
53 Jarno Van Mingeroet (Bel) Jartazi-7Mobile
54 Fabien Patanchon (Fra) Française Des Jeux
55 Arnaud Gerard (Fra) Française Des Jeux
56 Florian Morizot (Fra) Auber 93
57 Alexander Khatuntsev (Rus) Omnibike Dynamo Moscow
58 Philippe Schnyder (Swi) Selle Italia - Serramenti Diquigiovanni
59 Nicolas Crosbie (Fra) Agritubel
60 Hans Dekkers (Ned) Agritubel
61 Milton Javier Ramos Gamez (Hon) Atom
62 Koji Fukushima (Jpn) Cycle Racing Team Vang
63 Robby Meul (Bel) Jartazi-7Mobile
64 Vytautas Kaupas (Ltu) Jartazi-7Mobile
65 Martin Velits (Svk) Team Konica Minolta
66 Ivan Seledkov (Rus) Omnibike Dynamo Moscow
67 Konstantin Ponomarev (Rus) Omnibike Dynamo Moscow

Past winners

2005 Tristan Valentin (Fra) Auber 93                   195 kms in 5.02.32
2004 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Ag2r-Prevoyance             195.2 kms in 5.02.26
2003 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Jean Delatour 188 kms in 4.42.48 2002 Baden Cooke (Aus) La Francaise des Jeux 2001 Jacky Durand (Fra) La Francaise Des Jeux 188 kms in 4.44.33 2000 Jo Planckaert (Bel) Cofidis 180 kms in 4.36.16 1999 Jean Michel Thilloy (Fra) Saint Quentin-Oktos-MBK 177.6 kms in 4.13.51 1998 Frédéric Delalande (Fra) Jean Floc'h Mantes 177.6 kms in 4.38.48 Past winners courtesy of Mario Stiehl,