Tour de France News Extra for July 19, 2004
Edited by Jeff Jones
Post-stage 14 quotes
There were 10 men in the winning break during stage
14 from Carcassonne to Nimes, but only one of them could win: Aitor
Gonzalez (Fassa Bortolo), who launched the decisive attack with 7 km to
go to the finish. Although Christophe Mengin (FDJeux.com) tried to tow
the rest up to Gonzalez, he couldn't finish off the job and the Spaniard
was gone. Mengin and Nicolas Jalabert ended up escaping their companions
to fight it out for second, with Jalabert winning the two up sprint. Pierrick
Fedrigo (CA) finished fourth at 29 seconds, meaning that the three French
riders in the break were all in the top four without coming away with
the big prize.
Nicolas Jalabert (Phonak, 2nd)
Nicolas Jalabert (Phonak)
Photo ©: Sirotti
"It wasn't for lack of trying but I rode too hard in the break. It's
a pity, because I would have liked to dedicate the victory to our leader
Tyler Hamilton who had abandoned the day before. His departure had increased
Pierrick Fédrigo (CA, 4th)
"In the final kilometres, I tried to attack, like the others in the
break. Unfortunately Nicolas Jalabert came back with guys on his wheel.
For once, the French did not work against each other: Instead we let the
Spaniards work, because they were in the majority, but we shouldn't have
because one of them got away. Unfortunately for us. Now, I hope to advantage
of the rest day."
Jan Ullrich (T-Mobile, 21st)
"This day went perfectly, especially after the break went. I will appreciate
the rest day. I am ready to confront the Alps and, if all is well, I'll
show good things."
Launch Armstrong (USPS, 39th)
"The race was very active during the first two first hours. But, as
soon as the break formed, it calmed down. We controlled it well behind
without having the least problem."
Pevenage at odds with T-Mobile
Jan Ullrich's personal mentor Rudy Pevenage is not happy with the situation
between Jan and the T-Mobile team. After Ullrich lost significant quantities
of time to Armstrong in the Pyrenees over the last three days, Pevenage
was annoyed. At the finish in Plateau de Beille, "There was no-one there
for Jan," Pevenage told DPA. "It will be hard for a miracle to
happen, Lourdes is already behind us."
Assocorridori vs. ASO
The Italian rider association (Assocorridori) together with Francesco
Moser has criticised the Tour de France organisers ASO for being "arrogant
and overbearing" after preventing Danilo Di Luca, Martin Hvastija and
Stefano Casagranda from competing in the race. The Assocorridori said
in a statement that, "With the recent position taken in the Zanini and
Padrnos cases, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has certified the
arrogance and overbearing nature of the direction of the Tour de France,
which has used illegal means against certain riders to unjustly exclude
them from the race. We would like to let Mr. Leblanc know that the athletes
will no longer accept being treated like simple tools in the service of
the business of the Tour: In future, the riders will know to take the
opportunity to protest."
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2004)