Recently on Cyclingnews.com

Mont Ventoux
Photo ©: Sirotti

8th Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under - 2.HC

Australia, January 17-22, 2006

Main Page    Results & report      Stage Details      Previous Stage  

Stage 5 - Sunday, January 22: Adelaide City Council Circuit, 81km

Commentary by Jeff Jones, with additional reporting from Les Clarke

Live report

Live coverage starts: 13:35 ACDT
Estimated finish: 15:30 ACDT

13:09 CST   
Welcome to our live coverage of the fifth and final stage of the Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under, an 18 lap (81 km) circuit race around King William Rd and Montefiore Hill. It's the traditional closing stage to this race, and is typically dominated by the sprinters. The likes of Robbie McEwen, Allan Davis, Thor Hushovd, Mark Renshaw, Jaan Kirsipuu, Simone Cadamuro, and Dmitri de Fauw will be looking to show themselves today.

The race for the general classification isn't over yet, even though Simon Gerrans enjoys a seven second lead coming into the last stage. To overhaul him, second placed Luis Sanchez would have to win a fair chunk of the total of 12 bonus seconds on offer today - a big ask for a non sprinter. There are two intermediate sprints on laps 8 and 12, each worth 3, 2, 1 seconds for top three. The final sprint is worth 6, 4, 2 seconds. So you can do the sums on that. A Sanchez breakaway without Gerrans is highly unlikely, too, and Robbie McEwen, although a better sprinter, is at 18 seconds down on GC and likely won't challenge.

It could be interesting for the points competition, with Russell Van Hout (UniSA) and Daniel Becke (Milram) tied on 18 points, and a number of other riders capable of taking that jersey today. Allan Davis, perhaps?

In the mountains competition, Cadel Evans leads Samuel Dumoulin by 4 points, with Van Hout and Gene Bates 16 points behind Evans. But there are two KOM sprints today, on laps 10 and 15 on Montefiore Hill, and each are worth a very generous 16 points for a win. So it's quite possible that Evans could lose the jersey, although he's won it twice in the past already so he knows what to do.

The main factor today (again) will be the heat and the wind, with suffocating NW winds continue to blow across Adelaide before a cooler change is expected this afternoon. That may come during the race, but it may not. It's currently nudging 40 degrees in downtown Adelaide, up from about 35 at 7:00am this morning and 38 at 2:30am last night. I can personally verify these figures, at the expense of some sleep.

13:36 CST   
The countdown finishes and they're off and racing in the final stage, to a huge cheer from the big crowd gathered by the sides of King William Road. 18 laps to go...

13:38 CST   
We spoke to race leader Simon Gerrans before the start, and the Ag2r rider was looking confident. "I'm absolutely rapt to be in the lead, and I hope to hold onto the lead today," he said. "The team is really pleased with how we've gone this week, but they're happy it's the last stage today. They're rapt to have me in the lead and it's definitely a win for the team, a fantastic way to start the year."

Does this change your status within the team? "It definitely puts me in a higher position in the team and for races like this, I will definitely be in a high position."

13:44 CST   
Race favourite Robbie McEwen was looking a little better than he did after yesterday's stage. "The climb itself was OK, but in the last few k's I had a bit of heat stress at the finish," he recalled.

"Yeah I'm going to have a go today. But I'll try not to expend too much energy. Maybe it'll be a sprint today but we'll see how it goes."

Would an evening crit be better, given the temperatures? "Look, it could be 40 degrees in the evening, so it doesn't make too much difference."

McEwen is currently in third overall, and even has an outside chance of picking up second. Does this give him confidence in his stage racing ability? "I've finished second here before and I really need a stage race that isn't too hilly, without time trials - all on time bonuses!" McEwen has won the Etoile des Bessèges and Circuit Franco-Belge in the past.

13:47 CST    8km/73km to go
The riders have completed the first lap, with the field very strung out as it does the U-turn at the top of King William Rd. There's already an early break with four UniSA riders in it!

Carlos Barredo and Jose Joaquin Rojas (Liberty Seguros), Hilton Clarke (Navigators Insurance), Mathew Hayman, Paul Crake, Sean Sullivan, Chris Jongewaard (Uni SA - Australia) and Matthew Rex (United Water - Australia U/23) are the men in front, with 20 seconds on the peloton.

13:49 CST   
UniSA is going for the teams classification, which is something they should win comfortably over Liberty Seguros. But having four riders in a break doesn't hurt.

Matt Hayman told us this morning that, "The teams classification is something that's worth riding for. We set ourselves up on the first day and couldn't really give it away. It actually worked out to be an advantage to have a couple of guys in the breaks on each day so we could take this classification.

Sean Sullivan added, "This week we've had a solid group of guys in decent shape. And we've been sharing the workload really well. We've achieved far more than we'd hoped for and it's a good start to the season."

The plan today: "Russ is leading the points classification so we'll concentrate on that. The Lotto boys will be looking for a bunch sprint for Robbie, but we'll have to see how it goes on the course that is really windy today.

13:50 CST    9km/72km to go
Luca Paolini (Liquigas) has made his way across to the break, which now has 15 seconds on the main field. Guess who are on the front? Ag2r. It's not a bad idea to let this break go to soak up the bonus seconds.

13:57 CST    13.5km/67.5km to go
The breakaway splits on the third lap, but comes back together as Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole) and an SA.com rider try to bridge up. It's tough out there, with the wind and the heat.

14:06 CST    18km/63km to go
The fourth lap causes some damage to the break, as Bodrogi (CA - not Renshaw), Sean Sullivan (Uni SA - Australia) and Luca Paolini (Liquigas) split off the front. They are joined by Hayman and Barredo, to form a group of five.

At the end of lap five, this group is 50 seconds ahead of the peloton, and the rest of the early break is in between.

14:10 CST    22.5km/58.5km to go
The front group is the following riders: Carlos Barredo (Liberty Seguros), Luca Paolini (Liquigas), Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole), Mathew Hayman, Sean Sullivan (Uni SA - Australia).

The second group on the road has been absorbed by the Ag2r controlled peloton, which is 36 seconds behind the leaders.

14:11 CST   
It increases to 42 seconds - impressive work by the front guys.

14:13 CST   
They're working well together in the break as Hayman pounds away doing some big turns. He and Barredo were in the break the other day to Yankalilla, and were the real drivers.

Ag2r is quite happy with this situation.

14:14 CST   
Liberty's Alby Davis was looking forward to today's finale, which is another opportunity for him to get a stage win. Luis Sanchez basically conceded defeat yesterday: "It would be very hard for him to get the win now," said Davis. "Gerrans would have to have a lot of bad luck to lose the lead, and I can't see that happening."

How do you see Sanchez performing this season? "He's another year older and he's even stronger this year. I think he's in for a big year."

And yourself? "That's the idea, to have a good year, especially coming into March with Milan San Remo. I'm very happy with my performance this week and hopefully this good form can continue."

14:19 CST    27km/54km to go
Sergey Lagutin (Navigators) has pulled the pin after lap 6. He suffered a lot yesterday in the heat.

The break is still ahead, commanding a 40 second lead over the peloton.

14:21 CST   
With the first mountain sprint coming on lap 10, we can look at the chances of Matt Hayman. He has six points on the KOM GC, so if he wins both mountain sprints, then he could take the jersey from Evans. Unlikely. He's the only one that can threaten the Davitamon-Lotto rider.

14:24 CST    31.5km/49.5km to go
The end of the seventh lap sees the break consolidate its lead at 45 seconds. The next lap will be for sprint points.

The breakaways are riding a steady tempo now, not using too much energy. It's still very windy and hot and plenty of water is needed.

Davitamon-Lotto are providing some assistance to Ag2r in the chase.

14:27 CST    36km/45km to go
Sean Sullivan (Uni SA - Australia) takes out the first sprint, ahead of his teammate Mathew Hayman (Uni SA - Australia) and Luca Paolini (Liquigas). In two laps is the first mountain hill sprint.

14:30 CST    40.5km/40.5km to go
It's cooling down a little as the southerly change starts to hit Adelaide. That's a welcome relief for everyone. The wind is still strong, but the crowds are a little down.

There is no cow.

14:33 CST   
The gap comes down to 33 seconds as we hit the halfway point of the race, end of lap 9.

14:34 CST    42km/39km to go
The break is now on lap 10, where they will contest the first mountain sprint.

14:35 CST   
Henk Vogels (Davitamon-Lotto) has abandoned on the 10th lap. That's one of Robbie McEwen's key leadout men gone.

14:39 CST   
None of these riders in the break remotely threatens Simon Gerrans. Sean Sullivan is the best placed, at 15'54 down on GC.

14:40 CST    45km/36km to go
The five leaders up their advantage to 46 seconds at the completion of lap 10. We'll give you the KOM results as soon as we get 'em.

14:49 CST    50km/31km to go
11 laps down now, and this break of five (Carlos Barredo (Liberty Seguros), Luca Paolini (Liquigas), Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole), Mathew Hayman, Sean Sullivan (Uni SA - Australia)) continues to animate the race. But Davitamon-Lotto and Ag2r are keeping a close eye on things and it's 49 seconds.

Luca Paolini (Liquigas) won the KOM sprint ahead of Mathew Hayman (Uni SA - Australia) and Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole). That's put paid to Hayman's
chances of claiming the mountains jersey.

14:52 CST    54km/27km to go
The second sprint at the end of lap 12 sees Luca Paolini again in front, with Carlos Barredo (Liberty Seguros) and Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole) in second and third. That's essentially put paid to Sanchez' chances of winning the overall, unless he can attack.

14:54 CST   
Barredo's chances of getting the sprints jersey from Russ Van Hout have also ended. He needed to win both sprints, but the UniSA riders worked to ensure that he didn't. Interesting race within a race there.

14:56 CST    58.5km/22.5km to go
Sullivan is dropped from the break as Josh Wilson (United Water) abandons from the peloton. There have been a few withdrawals today, after yesterday's seven DNFs.

The temps have dropped about 10 degrees in the last hour, and it's quite a bearable 31 degrees now.

14:58 CST   
We spoke to William Walker this morning, and the young Victorian was pretty happy with his week, which has netted him an Australian title and a fourth overall in the JCTDU.

Walker didn't seem as concerned about the heat as some of the others: "Well, the weather doesn't make too much difference to the early season racing, but it's still good to get some racing in in the early season. I've gained some decent form recently and I hope it stays with me."

Rabobank was also a bit tentative about Walker racing the Bay Crits, but they're not too worried about him being injured here.

14:59 CST   
The gap is 13 seconds after 13 laps as the main field starts to lift the pace. This will surely end in a bunch sprint.

15:01 CST   
The break is losing its wheels as Bodrogi drops off next. That leaves just Paolini, Hayman and Barredo out in front.

15:05 CST    63km/18km to go
At the end of the 14th lap, Davitamon-Lotto has put its team on the front of the peloton and the gap is 31 seconds going into the second KOM lap.

15:07 CST    65km/16km to go
Paolini takes the second KOM sprint as well, leading Barredo and Hayman over the top. But that won't be enough to threaten Cadel Evans, who will be the mountains champion of the JCTDU.

15:09 CST   
Barredo wasn't contributing a lot to the break when they were five. Now he is.

From the man himself: Simon Gerrans is pronounced with a hard "g", not a soft one, contrary to earlier information!

15:10 CST   
Samuel Dumoulin (Ag2r - Prevoyance) took fourth in the KOM ahead of Cadel Evans (Davitamon Lotto), which means Evans does indeed take the jersey. Had he not scored any points, Dumoulin would have got him.

15:11 CST    67.5km/13.5km to go
End of the 15th lap, and Hayman, Barredo and Paolini are fighting a losing battle against the Davitamon-Lotto controlled peloton. Can they finish it off for Robbie McEwen?

15:13 CST   
During the 16th lap, the pace lifts even more as the sprinters start to jostle for position in the peloton.

15:18 CST    72km/9km to go
During the 16th lap, the pace lifts even more as the sprinters start to jostle for position in the peloton.

The breakaway has been caught though. All together with a couple of laps to travel.

15:20 CST    74km/7km to go
Ben Brooks (Navigators) and Aaron Kemps (Liberty) attack on the 17th lap. Really putting it to the peloton, but it'll be a hard task.

15:21 CST    77km/4km to go
Brooks and Kemps are caught before the bell lap. All together with one lap to travel! McEwen is in third wheel behind his mini-train, but Alby Davis is right behind the Davitamon rider.

15:23 CST    79km/2km to go
They go up Montefiore Hill for the last time and it's lined out as the sprinters fight for McEwen's wheel. Everyone knows who to mark.

15:23 CST    80km/1km to go
Robbie slips into fourth wheel as the wind up begins from a km out.

15:25 CST   
The sprint starts at the bottom of King William Road. It's a loooong slightly uphill drag.

15:26 CST    81km/0km to go
And it's Alby Davis who gets his second stage win!!!! McEwen takes second. Denied.

Simon Gerrans crosses the line with a big smile on his face as the overall winner of the Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under. Brilliant ride by him and particularly his team, who used their men to perfection.

15:33 CST   
We're still confirming third place - it may be Daniel Becke. That's going to be close for the sprints jersey.

15:41 CST   
We have third place confirmed: Simone Cadamuro (Milram). So Alby wins the final stage from Robbie and Simone. There's a nice ring to that.

15:56 CST   
Apart from Gerrans taking home the leader's jersey (Ag2r's third overall win here), Allan Davis should win the sprints jersey, Cadel Evans the mountains, and Will Walker the U23.

That wraps it up from the commentary team at the Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under, where it's been hot from start to finish. Thanks for joining us this week, and we'll have more live coming your in the near future.


1 Allan Davis (Aus) Liberty Seguros-Würth Team           1.49.47
2 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto                           
3 Simone Cadamuro (Ita) Team Milram                             
4 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Credit Agricole                            
5 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-T Interim            
6 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Liberty Seguros-Würth Team       
7 Matthew Goss (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS Cycling            
8 Simon Clarke (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS Cycling            
9 Marco Righetto (Ita) Liquigas-Bianchi                         
10 Dennis Haueisen (Ger) Team Milram                            

22 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Ag2r Prevoyance                          
Final general classification
1 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Ag2r Prevoyance                   16.36.54
2 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Liberty Seguros-Würth Team    0.07
3 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto                       0.14
4 William Walker (Aus) United Water-Australia U/23          0.46
5 Gene Bates (Aus) UniSA-Australia                          1.48
6 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Ag2r Prevoyance                     2.42

Sprints classification 

1 Allan Davis (Aus) Liberty Seguros

King of the Mountain classification 

1 Cadel Evans (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto                          

U23 rider classification 

1 William Walker (Aus) United Water-Australia U/23 

Back to top