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Tour de Georgia - 2.1

USA, April 19-24, 2005

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Stage 6 - April 24: Blairsville/Union County to Alpharetta, 201.5km

Commentary by Kristy Scrymgeour, with additional reporting from Mark Zalewski and Eddie Monnier

Complete live report

12:24 EDT   
Welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of the final stage of the 2005 Dodge Tour de Georgia. Its another cold and windy day out there today at the start line and at the finish. Today riders start in a town called Blairsville which is about 2000ft in elevation in Appalachian country, and go through rolling terrain and the Piney Woods of western Georgia gradually dropping 1000ft in elevation for a flat finish towards Alpharetta.

On the start line its 42 degrees and most of the riders have been hiding in their team buses/cars until just before the start to stay warm. They are starting to emerge now to sign on and line up. There is still a fair crowd up here in the land of NASCAR fans, to watch the riders roll out. Before the real start, the riders will complete a 6.5km parade lap before hitting the 0km mark at the start line again at Meeks Park.

12:32 EDT   
The riders have now rolled off for their parade lap and in about eight minutes the race proper should start. No hang on, their are not starting just yet. There is a delay.

12:36 EDT   
Most of the riders are pretty tired today after two tough days, made epic by not only the terrain, but the weather. An amazing ride by young Tom Danielson yesterday puts him in yellow today, so Discovery are out there to control the race somewhat and protect the lead today.

12:39 EDT   
They will not have to do it alone though as another team out there has a jersey to protect and that is Health Net and the sprint jersey. Sprint leader Greg Henderson and his teammate Gord Fraser were kind enough to let our reporter Mark Zalewski into their team bus this morning to warm up. Silly Mark didn't being any warm clothes did he!

Gord said that their main aim today is to keep the sprint jersey. There are two sprints today. One at 137km and the other at 162km. This will mean that they have to chase down potential threats up until then or hope for a breakaway that contains no riders in contention of the sprint jersey. Fraser comments that they are hoping for the latter.

12:46 EDT   
We also spoke to young Trent Lowe today whose amazing ride into 7th place in yesterdays stage allowed him to stay on top in the battle for the U23 jersey between him and Saul Raisin. He said "I feel like I've got a hang over today," he laughed. "You know how you feel after going out a few nights in a row, well I feel like that but without having gone out. My only job today is to stay with Saul."

12:57 EDT   
Apart from protecting leaders jerseys and sprint jerseys, it will be a battle today between other teams who would really like a stage win on this last day. There will no doubt be many attacks by the domestic US times who would love to get their name on the board and of course there are many Euro teams who would also love a result here. We still have Andrea Tafi (Prodir - Saunier Duval) yet to get a stage win and he specifically told Cyclingnews on the first day that his aim was to get that stage win before he retires.

12:59 EDT   
The race did not actually roll out on time today. They were delayed, I think due to some cars on the course that they needed to move. They have now just reached the 0km mark for the official start and they are now rolling out of town with Discovery on the front.

13:05 EDT   
Over in Europe of course. Liège-Bastogne-Liège has just finished and it was a very exciting race. Don't worry, I'm not going to give anything away for those of you who want to watch it later, or of course read the full live report by Jeff Jones on Cyclingnews!

13:07 EDT   
The pace is pretty steady out on the road in Georgia. All the riders are rugged up to stay warm on another very cold day. A bit different to last years conditions. They will have a few hills to climb soon which will help to warm them up as well.

13:12 EDT    8km/193.5km to go
Just rolling along out there at the moment at the beginning of another long day in the saddle. The whole Discovery team is on the front with the whole Prodir team tucked in behind them followed by the Health Net team.

13:14 EDT   
I think one of the teams to watch for a stage win today will be LPR. Their sprinter Danilo Napolitano won eight races last year in Europe as an Espoir and has already won five races this year with LPR. Perhaps the uphill nature of the finish line today might not be his preferred finishing style, but he is certainly one to watch.

13:16 EDT   
The finish of todays race consists of six laps of a 5.9km (3.65mile) loop. The riders will have a chance to get used to the finish line after 6 laps of course. The last 2-300 meters to the finish is uphill with about a 4% grade. It will be an exciting finish.

13:19 EDT   
Last year Gord Fraser was the victor of the final stage in Alpharetta and perhaps if he's feeling well enough at the end, Health Net might go for the stage win, but as Gord did say this morning, their main aim is to keep Henderson in the sprint jersey.

13:21 EDT   
After yesterdays stage the top ten riders in GC are:
1 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 21.54.44
2 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner 0.04
3 Floyd Landis (USA) Phonak Hearing Systems 0.09
4 Bobby Julich (USA) Team CSC 1.10
5 Lance Armstrong (USA) Discovery Channel 1.41
6 David Zabriskie (USA) Team CSC 3.04
7 Marco Pinotti (Ita) Prodir - Saunier Duval 3.11
8 Nathan O'Neill (Aus) Navigators Insurance 3.14
9 Michael Blaudzun (Den) Team CSC 3.51
10 José Azevedo (Por) Discovery Channel 3.58

Yesterday was an amazing race for Danielson. Of course everybody knew he had the talent, but yesterday he proved that he could pull of a result under pressure.

13:31 EDT    16km/185.5km to go
The field has pretty much stopped now at mile ten for a "nature break" and things are just starting to get moving again as we reach the highest point of the day and enter Fannin County.

13:34 EDT    19km/182.5km to go
Discovery is back on the front now as the race heads down a descent. The road is very smooth and perfect, having been recently repaved. The cows are out on the side of the road, looking up occasional at the array of colours, as men with shaved legs go by in lycra! Must be a new sight for them I would say.

13:46 EDT   
The situation remains the same in the race. I'm guessing that we will have a few attacks in the not too distant future, however its a long way to go out their and a lot of tired souls. It may well be that we'll have to wait for the second half of the race before we see any action at all.

13:52 EDT    32km/169.5km to go
Still all together and they have averaged 23miles/hour (36km/h) so far. They are rolling through beautiful valleys and I would say the riders are happy they are rolling through the valleys and not over the hills. The race is following a river and people are out on the side of the road again.

13:53 EDT   
Its still cold, the temperature currently reading 45 degrees. Thats about 7 degrees for all those non Americans reading this report. But the sun is out.

14:04 EDT   
Meanwhile in the town of Alpharetta where the race finishes today, the crowds are starting to gather. Its cold and windy, but as I said, the sun is out and I believe we will get a huge crowd for the finish of this last stage, remembering that it will be the last chance for many people to see Lance in action in the USA.

14:05 EDT   
A little history on Alpharetta that I grabbed from the town website, which is called www.awesomealpharetta.com!
"From the North Georgia Mountains to the Chattahoochee River along a Cherokee Indian trail, a tiny village named New Prospect Camp Ground was formed. This village, made up of tents, a log school, and arbor became a trading post where Indians and white settlers exchanged their goods. The surrounding countryside provided excellent farming land, especially for cotton. On December 11, 1857, the town was chartered and became the county seat of Milton County. The town was renamed Alpharetta from the Greek words "alpha" meaning first and "retta" meaning town. In 1932, Milton County was merged into Fulton County."

14:09 EDT    44.8km/156.7km to go
Discovery still manning the front of the peloton. The paced picked up for a while to 27m/h but it is back down now and the average is still 23m/h.

14:12 EDT   
Credit Agricole are up near the front. They might have a few digs later on in the race and try to get Saul Raisin up the road in pursuit of the young riders jersey. Raisin also had a great ride yesterday, finishing 13th in the stage and is only 31 seconds behind Trent Lowe in the U23 classification.

14:17 EDT    50km/151.5km to go
Fifty kilomters into the race now as we head over some rolling hills. The wind is strong and it is pretty much a direct crosswind, but there are a lot of trees around to protect the bunch a little bit. Discovery is still on the front and the pace is picking up a little bit and the field is more strung out now.

14:19 EDT   
Another one bites the dust for Colavita as Derek Wilkonson abandons the race now. The peloton is down to 82 riders for the last stage.

14:20 EDT   
At the start line today in Blairsville, the home town of famous NASCAR driver Bill Elliot (also known as Million Dollar Billy), Elliot was actually out near the start with his NASCAR for the fans to get a look.

14:23 EDT   
Down in Alpharetta at the moment, the temperature is 52 degrees. With the wind chill factor its about 47 degrees, with the wind blowing at 29km/h (18m/h).

14:28 EDT   
With the riders now past the 50km mark, feeding is allowed from the cars. Soon the riders will have another relatively small climb as they hit the Dawson county line at the 67km mark. From there it is basically downhill with rollers along the way.

14:35 EDT    59km/142.5km to go
The race has recently left the Chattahoochee National Forest, which was really quite beautiful and they are now out in the open, currently passing an apple orchard. With the sun shining, being out of the shade of the forest will help warm things up for the riders.

14:37 EDT   
We are on a pretty main road now with Discovery still on the front and the average speed still the same at 37km/h (23.4m/h). There are no time bonuses in todays stage, so we won't see any action in the sprints for GC riders trying to move up.

14:40 EDT   
Apparently NASCAR driver Bill Elliot's hometown is Dawsonville, not Blairsville. Dawsonville is actually a town not far off the road where the riders are passing right now.

14:48 EDT    67km/134.5km to go
We have a pretty big drop down as we go downhill and drop about 500m at the Dawson County line. Discovery still at the front setting the pace.

14:50 EDT   
After losing his leaders jersey yesterday by nine seconds on that horribly steep part of the climb up to Brasstown Bald yesterday, Floyd Landis was in good spirits on the start line today. He rugged up in his thermal jacket for the race, but looking good.

14:53 EDT   
A few emails from readers to give us a more current nickname for Bill Elliot. According to Lamar Mauney who riders for the Land Rover/Siemens Home Appliances Devo Cycling Team: "It is actually "Awesome Bill from Dawsonville"...."Million Dollar Bill" is a bit dated - I think that came from 1998, the year Winston offered a million dollar bonus for anyone that could win the three super-speedway races that year.

14:57 EDT   
Back to commentary about Cycling! I would say it is quite an honour for Danielson to be in a position where Lance Armstrong is now working for him. It was great teamwork on the mountain yesterday with Lance attacking on Brasstown Bald setting up the move for Danielson and later sitting on the wheel of Landis in the final kilometers forcing Landis to have to chase to protect his lead. Again today Lance, although sitting in fifth position will be working for Danielson to protect the yellow jersey. Discovery also took over the lead in the Teams Classification yesterday from CSC, and will hope to also keep that lead, but of course Danielson's yellow jersey is the most important thing.

15:02 EDT   
The peloton is now traveling at 13m/h (20.8km/h) as they go up a small climb. Discovery still lead.

15:06 EDT   
As well as the yellow jersey and the teams classification, Discovery also have the Mountain jersey with Jose Rubiera. Of course if you were paying attention, Rubiera claimed the Mountain jersey during his long breakaway on stage 4 and also got points on one of yesterdays climbs with the help of Ekimov. He leads the mountain classification by 16 points from Sven Krauss (Gerolsteiner) and is on no danger of losing it as their are no mountain sprints in todays stage.

15:12 EDT   
I really haven't said all that much about Gerolsteiner this week, but of course they have had a very successful week. With the stage win by Peter Wrolich on day two and Levi's impressive performance up Brasstown Bald yesterday, I'm pretty sure the team would be very happy with their tour so far.

15:18 EDT   
A few readers have been asking whether Lance will go for the Sprint jersey today, seeing that he is second in the sprint classification at the moment, only four points behind Henderson. In my opinion, and I could be wrong, I don't believe Lance will go for it. It will be important for Danielson to have his whole team protecting him today, especially in the circuits at the end where he will need to be safe and he'll also need to finish in the front group without losing any time.

15:23 EDT    91km/110.5km to go
We are about an hour and 20 minutes from reaching Alpharetta at the moment. I would say the crowds on the finishing circuit number about 10,000 at the moment and of course more coming. Out on the road its status quo. Rubiera just took at turn on the front and basically it Discovery in Tour de France mode today with the whole team lined up at the front, but this time with Tommy D in yellow.

15:27 EDT   
Only a few kilometers from the feed zone now, so riders will be getting ready to have their lunch. Its sloooowly getting a little warmer in Alpharetta, now at 55 degrees. At least the riders will be happy that the sun is out and there is no chance of rain, or snow for that matter.

15:31 EDT    95.5km/106km to go
We have just gone past the feed zone and are turning left at the Handy Corner Convenience store. I guess if the riders missed their feed they can drop in their for anything they need!

15:32 EDT   
Our Stage One winner, Robbie Hunter has abondoned the race at the feed zone. The Phonak boys has a hard couple of days on the front, defending the yellow jersey in the mountains!

15:36 EDT   
An update on young Ted King from the US National team. Ted crashed yesterday as he started a descent on Unicoi Gap and was airlifted to hospital from the top of the mountain. After initial concerns of spinal chord damage, extensive testing including a CT scan proved Ted to be clear of any major injuries. He has some road rash of course, but apart from that he is going to be just fine. They kept him in hospital overnight, but just for precautionary measures as he had hit his head.

15:38 EDT    100km/101.5km to go
It seems the Symmetrics team car has somehow found their way off-course and have called for Mavic to take care of the riders until they find their way back to the caravan. Perhaps they stopped for some chocolate at the Handy Corner Store!

15:40 EDT    101km/100.5km to go
WOW, Finally we have an attack and guess who it is!! Andrea Tafi (Saunier Duval) of course. He has 11 seonds at this point and there is no reaction from the field.

15:41 EDT   
He is certainly not going to end this tour without at least trying for his stage win!

15:43 EDT   
Out on the course, hundreds of volunteers are again out in force helping to keep this race safe for the riders. Our correspondent Mark Zalewski is from Indiana and says that he has just past a friend of his who came all the way from Indiana to volunteer at this race. So a shout out to Matt Moore and thanks to all those volunteers out there.

15:47 EDT    106.4km/95.1km to go
Danny Pate (Jelly Belly/PoolGel) has bridged to Tafi and the pair have a 15" gap on two chasers, Sven Krauss (Gerolsteiner) and Dominique Perras (Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada) with another 15" back to the bunch.

15:49 EDT    108km/93.5km to go
Perras and Krauss have now caught Tafi and Pate and so we have a group of four, 25 seconds ahead of the field. The group is working together in a paceline, very well together.

15:50 EDT   
Danny Pate is the highest on GC out of the group, but he is almost nine minutes down and not a threat to GC. Discovery are on the front of the peloton but they wouldn't be worried about this break. This would be a good situation for them and also for Health Net.

15:53 EDT    110km/91.5km to go
Just over half way into the race, the break of four now have 1'15" on the peloton.

15:56 EDT    115km/86.5km to go
The gap is increasing quite quickly with no chase from the bunch and is now at 1'40". The terrain is only slightly rolling now as we head closer to Alpharetta.

16:01 EDT   
A breakaway is non-GC contenders is always good for a team trying to protect their lead because once a break is up the road it is unlikely that other attacks will go which allows them to relax a little and just set the pace. If the break stays away, that is perfect for them because the finish in the bunch will be safer and their job of protecting Danielson, keeping him safe and also making sure he finishes right up their in the bunch is a lot easier.

16:02 EDT   
The gap is now 2'30" and rising.

16:06 EDT    120km/81.5km to go
The riders in the break are now shedding their layers as this hard work has obviously warmed them up a little. The Gerolsteiner and Jelly Belly car are up with the break, and Tafi and Perras are handing their clothes to the Mavic Neutral support team.

16:06 EDT   
Incidentally, the Symmetrics team must have figured out how to work their GPS system as they have made it back into the caravan!

16:09 EDT    123km/78.5km to go
The gap is now 3'05" and the breakaway is working very well together. Back in the bunch the Discovery guys who are doing the majority of work are Azevedo, McCartney and Rubiera, but they wouldn't be too worried about this.

16:11 EDT   
Its flat and rolling, well flat for Georgia anyway. We are only about 15km to the first Maxxis sprint of the day. Health Net would be happy for this break to stay away so that they don't have to worry about contesting the sprints to protect Henderson's lead.

16:18 EDT    127km/74.5km to go
Lance has just been back to his team car to chat with Johan Bruyneel but is now back in the field. Only about 5km from the sprint now. There is a $2500 prize bonus for this sprint and the break now has a lead of 3'15" so one of these riders in the break will take that.

16:22 EDT   
The gap is holding at 3'15" now. The points on the sprint line are 5 for the winner, three for second place and one for third, but like I said, nobody in this break is a threat to the sprint jersey. Sven Krauss is the closest, but he is still 21 points behind.

16:23 EDT   
Someone has broken away from the break! The sprint is a wide open road. Its Perras who attacked to go for the $2500 and he has taken the sprint. The other three didn't really contest it and they are now all back together working to keep this break away.

16:25 EDT   
The sprint results are Perras, followed by Pate and Krauss.

16:29 EDT    142km/59.5km to go
We have another 20km before the next sprint which is actually outside the Town Hall in Alpharetta and just before we start the finishing circuits.

16:30 EDT   
The gap has come down a little as is now at three minutes.

16:34 EDT   
The LPR team has now moved to the front of the peloton to set pace. Perhaps they want that stage win for Napolitano today and are going to do the work to bring this break back.

16:37 EDT   
I just talked with Cyclingnews correspondent Eddie Monnier who is riding in the Mavic neutral support vehicle today. He said he caught up with Phonak DS, René Savary, this morning on the start line who said that of course Phonak were disappointed after yesterdays stage, being such a close finish, but overall they are happy with the Tour. Two stage wins and with Landis wearing the yellow jersey for two stages is a successful race.

16:41 EDT   
The gap is 3'10" now and some of the Navigators riders have moved to the front of the peloton to help out LPR.

16:43 EDT   
As if I have to tell you this but there are certainly some pretty dedicated Lance fans out there. I have just had an email from one such fan from Toronto, Canada who wrote:
"After Armstrong's announcement before the start of TdG, my girlfriend and I hopped in the car and made the 19+ hour drive from Toronto Ont, to see Lance ride on home turf for possibly the last time. We stayed in Dalonghea ( sp?) for a night, rode up wolf's gap and saw them there, rode down, to the 2km to finish marker, saw them climb up the last little rise, then races ourselves into town to see them finish.
What a day !!!! The we hopped back into our car and drove another 19+ hours back to Canada in time to make it to my best friends wedding!!!!!! And I would do it all again!!!!"

16:46 EDT    150km/51.5km to go
The gap is falling now as we are about 20 minutes from Alpharetta. The break is still working well together with Tafi really powering it. The gap is coming down however, and is now at 2'30" with LPR doing the work in the chase.

16:50 EDT    153km/48.5km to go
About 10km till the next sprint now and the gap has come down to two minutes and falling. LPR are really keen to turn this into a bunch sprint for their sprinter Napolitano.

16:53 EDT    158km/43.5km to go
Tafi still taking long hard pulls but the gap is coming down with 5km to go till the next sprint.

16:56 EDT   
The sprint is on a four lane wide Boulevarde. The average speed is 24.1km at this stage. Before the sprint is a small dip leading into a slight right and its a slight rise up to the sprint line.

The gap is 1'50". I'm afraid its going to be close, but I would say this break has a big chance of getting caught when we hit the circuits.

16:59 EDT    161km/40.5km to go
LPR still doing all the work back in the bunch. Health Net have been able to have an easier day so far but when this break gets caught they are going to have to start working for Henderson to keep that sprint jersey. I believe the sprint points on the finish line are 15 points for the winner.

17:01 EDT    163km/38.5km to go
Pate is really trying to power this break now along with Tafi and has taken a really strong pull just near the sprint line. Back in the bunch LPR are on the front and a couple of Health Net riders have started to move up. The gap is now 1'15".

17:02 EDT    164km/37.5km to go
The gap is falling quickly now and is at 1'05" as they race is about to hit the circuits for the first of six laps.

17:03 EDT   
The winner of the sprint was Pate, followed by Perras and Tafi. Looks like another disappointing stage win attempt for Tafi!

17:04 EDT   
The breakaway has hit the circuits now. They are still working hard but we still have 35km to go.

17:04 EDT    167km/34.5km to go
The circuit is 5.9km in length and is rolling terrain on wide open roads. Its going to be very fast!

17:07 EDT   
LPR have done the work so far, but I would say they are going to have their work cut out for them. Greg Henderson (Health Net) is very strong this year and in an attempt to keep his sprint jersey will be going to the stage win.

17:07 EDT   
LPR are still on the front as the peloton hit the circuits and Credit Agricole is up their with them followed by Discovery who will be looking after Danielson.

17:08 EDT   
The break is at 54" now as they are on the first lap of the circuit. They are at the U-turn now at the bottom of the circuit.

17:09 EDT   
Tafi is on the front of the break driving it and they can see the break on the other side of the circuit now.

17:10 EDT   
Pate rolls through now to do a turn. The gap is now 45". As the peloton passed them Tafi sat up and jokingly gave the field "the bird."

17:11 EDT   
The peloton is all strung out now and moving fast. LPR still on the front. Pate still driving the break as we near the finish line for five laps to go. The break is 50".

17:12 EDT    172km/29.5km to go
They are riding through the finish line with Tafi leading. Pate on his wheel followed by Krauss and Perras. They are not going to give this up.

17:12 EDT   
The gap is back down to 45"!

17:13 EDT   
Here comes the peloton through the finish line to see 5 laps to go. One Credit Agricole guy at the front with five LPR riders. Discovery tucked in behind led by Rubiera.

17:13 EDT   
The crowd is hude and LOUD!

17:15 EDT   
They did that last lap in 8'08" seconds. Its fast! The gap is holding at 50". Its an amazing effort by these four guys in the break.

17:17 EDT   
The gap is holding at 50 seconds till on this second lap of six finishing circuits.

17:18 EDT   
LPR still on the front with Discovery just behind them. Health Net riders Gord Fraser and Greg Henderson are just behind them and they look good.

17:19 EDT   
Perras in on the front of the break now and Pate pulling through. He has his head down and is driving it! Not long before they come through the finish line again.

17:20 EDT    178km/23.5km to go
500meters until the finish line and they will see four laps to go. Tafi is on the front again going up the hill.

17:21 EDT   
All four riders in the break are working hard together. They all want this break to hold and of course Tafi wants it more than the rest!

17:23 EDT   
The gaps coming down again now. Its at 30". Health Net have now moved up with LPR.

17:24 EDT    180km/21.5km to go
The whole Health Net squad have moved up to the front now. They really need to get Henderson set up here as they have their sprint jersey to protect. They'll also be aiming to win this stage at the same time. You'll remember that this is the stage Gord won last year on the same finishing circuit, so they know it well.

17:25 EDT   
Pate on the front of the break now. They still have 30". They will want to bring this back right at the last minute to prevent to many counter attacks.

17:26 EDT   
The crowd is at least the same size as last year, if not bigger and they are screamers! They know how to make some noise.

17:27 EDT   
Tafi pulling through now on the other side of the course. They have just rounded the U-turn and are coming back up towards the finish line. The gap is 25".

17:27 EDT   
When they come through the finish line they will see three laps to go.

17:28 EDT    182.5km/19km to go
LPR still doing a lot of work on the front. Gerolsteiner are also up there. The gap is 21"

17:29 EDT    183km/18.5km to go
Coming through the finish line now. Three laps to go. Tafi on the front of the break. Health Net on the front of the peloton.

17:30 EDT    185km/16.5km to go
Moninger on the front with LPR behind. The rest of the Health Net team moving up again as they pass the finish line. Will the break make another lap?

17:30 EDT   
This break is not going to stay away but they are doing an amazing job of staying out there.

17:31 EDT   
The gap has got to be under 20 seconds right now by the look of it. Pate attacking the front of the break now. Krauss trying to go with him!!!!

17:32 EDT   
Former U23 World Time Trial Champion Danny Pate using his time trialing talents.

17:33 EDT   
Pate has split up the this break.

17:34 EDT   
Tafi has been caught by the peloton!

17:34 EDT   
Pate is still out there and Krauss is with him!

17:35 EDT   
Pate is leading Krauss with about 1km to the finish line. When they get there they'll see two laps to go. Pate is powering. 20" is the gap.

17:36 EDT    189.8km/11.7km to go
Perras dangling in between. looks like he's going to get caught by the bunch. Pate still driving it and now has a bike length gap on Krauss. The gap is falling though. Its 12" now.

17:37 EDT   
The gap is ten seconds as the peloton come through the finish line. Two laps to go. Pate soldiers on. Perras still dangling but getting caught right now. Pate and Krauss only have five seconds now.

17:38 EDT   
LPR on the front now and Discovery is right up there tucked in safely.

17:38 EDT   
Coming up to ten kilometers to go now, what an exciting finish.

17:39 EDT   
Grouppo Compacto. Pate and Krauss have been caught and the race is all together now. A Health Net rider on the front with LPR.

17:41 EDT   
Mainly LPR on the front with a couple of Health Net riders. Discovery just behind and the rest of the Health Net team behind them getting ready to move up.

17:41 EDT   
LPR riders are out of the saddle and driving it. Its fast and the field its strung out. When they come through this time they will have one lap to go!

17:42 EDT   
Governor Purdue is up on the stage watching the race. He previously addressed the crowd saying how exciting it was to have a bike race here is Alpharetta!

17:43 EDT   
Still altogether now. No counter attacks at this point. Its too fast. A long line at the front with LPR reall driving the pace. Their sprinter Napolitano is tucked in there ready to strut his stuff.

17:44 EDT   
He's already won five races in Europe this year, but he will have a challenge from Health Net.

17:45 EDT    194km/7.5km to go
Still single file here. The pace is very high. They have about 1.5km to the finish line for a km to go.

17:45 EDT   
Lance has floated to the back of the peloton now. There is a slight gap at the front with a Profir rider. Its Tafi again. He doesn't give up this guy!

17:46 EDT    196km/5.5km to go
One lap to go now! Tafi had about a 50m gap when he came through the finish.

17:46 EDT   
Tafi is caught. The field is single file front from head to tail. Danielson is in there looking safe!

17:48 EDT   
The pace is really high, still all together. LPR still at the front followed by Landis. Landis is now setting pace at the front.

17:49 EDT    198km/3.5km to go
They are on the other side of the circuit now. Floyd still on the front. It is way too fast for any attacks. Chris Wherry (Health Net) now on the front. Three kilomters to go!

17:49 EDT   
Wherry driving it at the front. Landis just behind him followed by Ekimov.

17:50 EDT   
CSC moving to the front now. They are at the bottom of the course turning the U-turn. They are out of the saddle up the slight rise.

17:50 EDT   
Prodir has a rider on the front now.....

17:51 EDT   
Now its a Navigators rider, followed by Phonak and CSC.

17:51 EDT    200.5km/1km to go
One km to go!

17:52 EDT   
The crowd are screaming, here comes the bunch. Its all together strung out.

17:52 EDT   
Very very fast.

17:53 EDT   
Its a huge field sprint. Wide across the road.

17:53 EDT   
Its a huge field sprint. Wide across the road.

17:53 EDT   
Its health Net. Fraser with Henderson on his wheel.

17:54 EDT   
Its Fraser, followed by Henderson followed by Phonak. I think its Clerc. Gord has done it again.

17:54 EDT   
It looked like Gord was leading out Henderson but on the line Henderson sat up to clap his teammate. They achieved two purposes, the stage win and the sprint jersey!

17:55 EDT   
It looks like Napolitano came in fourth followed by Hasselbacher. Its not confirmed yet though.

17:56 EDT   
Definitely the top three are Gord Fraser, Greg Henderson (Health Net) and Aurelien Clerc.

18:00 EDT   
Danielson finished safely in the bunch and is therefore the winner of the 2005 Dodge Tour de Georgia!

18:06 EDT   
Thanks for following our live coverage of Tour de Georgia. See y'all next time!



1 Gord Fraser (Can) Health Net/Maxxis
2 Greg Henderson (NZl) Health Net/Maxxis
3 Aurelien Clerc (Swi) Phonak
4 Danilo Napolitano (Ita) LPR
5 Rene Haselbacher (Aut) Gerolsteiner
6 Christian Muller (Ger) CSC
7 David O'Loughlin (Irl)Navigators
8 Christian Vandevelde (USA) CSC
9 Portal Sebastien (Fra) Credit Agricole
10 Vassili Davidenko (Rus) Navigators

General classification after stage 6

1 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 
2 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner            
3 Floyd Landis (USA) Phonak Hearing Systems

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