Latest Cycling News for July 13, 2006
Edited by Jeff Jones
Pre-stage 11 quotes
By Brecht Decaluwé and Hedwig Kröner in Tarbes
Cadel Evans (Davitamon)
"Almost everything is going to happen for GC today," commented Evans
before the start in Tarbes.
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You're not going to wait for the Alps? "Depends what the other guys
do. Today is one of the biggest days of the Tour... I feel okay. We'll
see when we get on the climbs, when it starts to really get hard. That's
when you know whether you're really going strong."
Chris Horner (Davitamon)
"There’s gonna be someone who will try it on the last climb. T-Mobile
probably will set a hard pace to take the jersey back. I’d be surprised
if, for instance, Landis takes the jersey back. The winner will be a good
rider, but not a rider who’s a favourite to win the Tour de France. It
will be someone who’s a bit down on GC. Another option might be that Discovery
or T-Mobile set a blistering pace at the last climb. Landis doesn’t have
a very strong team behind him. For that reason, I don’t think they will
want to take it, knowing that Alpe d’Huez and other hard stages are still
Marc Sergeant (Davitamon)
"We will see some more animation than yesterday, Those were the warm
up fights, without much damage. Today, the decision will be postponed
for a while but on the last climb we will see who’s good, better and best.
The race will be decided at the back, not in front. In my opinion, this
Tour de France will be won through elimination."
Dirk Demol (Discovery Channel)
"Today, it will be clearer who’s good. As for yesterday, it’s again
a beautiful stage with four tough climbs featuring before the final climb.
Nevertheless, towards the last climb there’s a long valley where you can
lose lots of energy, so the race will only be decided on the final climb.
We will not be attacking, on for example the Tourmalet. Although, if we
see that a rival is suffering, then you never know but normally we will
"My pick: our best rider today might be Azevedo, as he’s our best climber.
I saw that Klöden was going well, and Landis will probably close as well."
Mikel Astarloza (AG2R)
You're not that badly placed on GC either? "That's true, but for today
I have another job. We will try defend the jersey, and afterwards I have
to be in a good position to help Christophe Moreau. We hope that he will
make it to the podium this year."
Ludwig defends tactics
By Hedwig Kröner in Tarbes
T-Mobile team manager Olaf Ludwig has defended his team's tactics yesterday,
which saw T-Mobile lose the yellow jersey to AG2R, but still ride on the
front all day. "Yes, but did we defend the jersey? No," he told Cyclingnews
in Tarbes before the start of stage 11.
At the end of the stage, the gap between the peloton and Cyril Dessel
was 7'23. "I think it is small enough," said Ludwig. "We tried to make
the other teams to ride, too, but they decided not to. So we just limited
the time difference. And we did try to have somebody in the break - the
group that left was the first one where we unfortunately weren't represented."
No legs for Mayo
Iban Mayo was one of the surprises in the first
mountain stage of the Tour, finishing 153rd at 24'24 - a long way
from his Dauphiné Libéré form that saw him in a stage in the Alps last
month. The Basque, riding near home turf in the Pyrenees, didn't have
an explanation. "I suffered a bit with a sore throat," he was quoted by
Sportwereld as saying. "The fault of the aircon in the hotel. But
that can't be called an excuse. In the beginning of the stage, I felt
good, but when it went uphill I couldn't go. Why? No idea. The only thing
left in this Tour is to hope for a recovery in the Alps. so that I can
at least do something there."
Close Encounters of the Unpleasant Kind
All you want to do is get an escape group and pick up a few mountain
points, and what happens? Not what you expect - at least that's the way
it worked out for Fabian Wegmann Wednesday. "I had finally managed to
pick up a 15 to 20 second lead with some other riders when suddenly there
are Basque protesters in the street. I thought I wasn't seeing right.
They held me fast, literally, there was no way to get through. Unbelievable!
And the police didn't do anything. Suddenly the field was there and flew
right by. That doesn't particularly help your morale," writes the Gerolsteiner
rider on his homepage, www.fabianwegmann.de.
Jens Voigt's encounter was on Tuesday, and fortunately didn't end up
as bad as it could have been. As he describes it on www.sport1.de,
"In the middle of the stage, a wave went through the field. Everybody
moved with it, like a swarm of fish. I was all the way on the outside
and was happy, that nothing happened. But then it went BANG and I made
a big jump forwards! When I turned around to look, I saw that a photographer's
motorcycle had rammed me. They hadn't paid attention! Fortunately, I didn't
crash. But the best part was, they just drove on past me without a word
and didn't even excuse themselves. I notice who it was, but when I got
to the finish line, the driver was no longer there."
He tracked the driver down on Wednesday, though. "I found the motorcycle
driver before the start today! I told him, 'Hey, buddy, you drove into
me yesterday! You could at least have excused yourself or made some kind
of gesture.' He answered, 'yeah, you're right.'"
Moto crash in stage 10
A Dutch-piloted race motorbike crashed out of the Tour's 10th stage
between Cambo-les-Bains and Pau, according to ANP. The accident
happened on the descent of the Col de Soudet, when driver Bram Hengeveld
and NOS reported Gio Lippens slipped out on a corner. Lippens suffered
abrasions to his arm and leg, while Hengeveld had to be taken to hospital
for a deeper wound in his toe. Lippens was able to work on Thursday from
a car, but will be back on a moto on Friday, driven by Guido van Calster.
3 Molinos Resort for July and August
By Antonio J. Salmerón
According to El Faro de Murcia, the 3 Molinos Resort team says
it will continue its sponsorship until the end of the season - just as
Kaiku will do - despite rumours to the contrary. The team has announced
its line ups for the races in July and August, with Santos González and
Mikel Artetxe leading Molinos Resort in Villafranca de Ordizia, on July
25. They will accompanied by the youngest 3 Molinos Resort rider, Jose
Antonio Bańos, in addition to Isidro Cerrato, Domínguez, Rafael Casero,
Jesus Buendía and Pedro Castillo. The Otxoa Memorial will be the next
appointment for 3 Molinos Resort, on July 30.
3 Molinos Resort will take part in the Tour of Portuguese in August,
between the 5th and the 15th. From the 6th to the 10th, the squad will
participate in the Vuelta a Burgos and in the Spanish classic Subida a
Urkiola, on August 13. The Tour of Britain is also on the program, and
that race takes place between August 29 and September 3.
"Our presence in all these races has as its main objective to continue
to add triumphs in this year in which we debut in the professional continental
category," the team stated.
Dario Cioni leads Liquigas in China
31-year-old Dario Cioni will captain the Liquigas team in the Tour of
Qinghai Lake in China, from July 15 to 23. Cioni will be together with
Alberto Curtolo, Mauro Da Dalto, Francesco Failli, Nicola Loda, Marco
Milesi and Marco Righetto. Team manager: Dario Mariuzzo.
Grischa Niermann of Rabobank was just as happy to skip the Tour de France
this year, because he was waiting for something to happen at home. It
finally happened Wednesday morning at 10.28 - son Luca was born. He weighs
3540 grams and is 53 cm long. Mom, baby, Dad, and older brother Finn are
all doing well and are delighted.
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