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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

91st Ronde van Vlaanderen - PT

Belgium, April 8, 2007

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Ballan blasts Hoste for monumental win

By Gregor Brown and Brecht Decaluwé in Meerbeke

Ballan can't believe
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

Italian Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-Fondital) proved he belongs with the best in the Belgian Classics by winning the 91st Ronde van Vlaanderen. The 27 year-old attacked an elite field, including 2006 winner Tom Boonen (Quickstep-Innergetic), on the Muur of Geraardsbergen and was immediately joined by Belgian Leif Hoste (Predictor-Lotto), who he later out-sprinted on the line in Meerbeke.

The duo went full-gas and fairly traded pulls over the final 16 kilometres from the Muur. Ballan was forced to lead over the final kilometre, where the two went increasing slower while the chase closed in at only a few seconds. At 150 metres, Hoste opened up his sprint on Ballan's left, thinking he had enough to hold it to the line. But the 1.90m tall rider that usually leads out for Daniele Bennati kept on his rival's wheel, finally coming around in the last ten metres to steal glory.

Hoste finished second for the second year running while Ballan scored the first Italian win since Andrea Tafi in 2002. "The last kilometre was crazy," said the rider from Castelfranco Veneto after the finish. "I still don't believe that I did it!

"I did the attack on the Muur and did a huge pull all the way to the end; it went great. This course was really suited for me.

"Then, in the last kilometre, Hoste forced me to lead-out. I did not think that he would ever come around me. When he did pass me I just hooked on and... [huge smile - ed.] After the crash in GP Chiasso I have been building now I am able to be so strong. I will go into Paris-Roubaix with calmness." Liquigas' Luca Paolini finished third, just ahead of CSC's Karsten Kroon, while pre-race favourite Tom Boonen and his QuickStep team completely lost out on the winning move.

Leif Hoste
Photo ©: Brecht Decaluwé
(Click for larger image)

Hoste came so close to his first victory in Flanders but the finish was just a couple of metres too far for the Belgian. Right after he finished the he sat down and swore up a storm, louder and louder. "F***, verdomme, I feel so bad right now, not only for me but for the whole team," he explained. "They were doing an excellent job all day long.

"Many people were laughing with us but we were probably the strongest team in the race," Hoste continued. The Belgian wasn't mentioned too much as favourite for the race as he performed bad in the races leading up to Flanders. "I wasn't hiding or anything and there wasn't anything wrong with my form. I crashed twice - being injured on the same spot - in a short space of time, and it's no wonder I was faced with such a hard time."

How it unfolded

The early breakaway
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

It was a wonderful day at the start in Brugge for the 91st Ronde van Vlaanderen. The riders and directeurs sportifs were commenting on the weather, and how it had been years since it had been so warm for De Ronde, near 18°C.

The riders faced 259 kilometres of riding before the finish in Meerbeke; winding their way south, towards Kortrijk, before heading east and onto the pavé and Hellingen ('climbs'). The second half of the race presented the riders with 18 climbs in 125 kilometres.

Right away there were attacks and it took only until kilometre 29 for the first move to form. A group of seven riders moved free, consisting of José Vicente Garcia (Caisse d'Epargne), Enrico Franzoi (Lampre-Fondital), David Boucher (Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner), Maarten Tjallingii (Skil-Shimano), Laurent Mangel (Ag2r Prévoyance), Aleksandr Kuschynski (Liquigas) and Evert Verbist (Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen).

Oleg Tinkov's boys of Team Tinkoff were particularly active and trying to join the move before it gained too much distance. Mikhail Ignatiev and Nikolai Trusov both gave a go but could not get on. The Belgian Champion, Niko Eeckhout (Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen), also shot off the front but it was too late because the move had been formed. It lacked key teams Predictor, Quickstep and Rabobank but nonetheless it moved forward without too much difficulty.

The seven men worked their way south and by Gavere they had built up a lead of 13 minutes, the maximum they would see for the day. Behind, the peloton was allowing the escape to get its advantage, saving some energy for the latter half of the day. There was slight problem for Belgian favourite, Tom Boonen, he took a spill in Kortrijk but then quickly rejoined; he was reported with a sore right wrist.

Not much room for error
Photo ©: AFP
(Click for larger image)

By the first of 18 climbs, Molenberg, the seven men were down to 9'30" over the peloton. The chase was not being driven by any team in particular, but they were slowly closing the gap. Over the next three climbs, the Wolvenberg, Kluisberg and Knokteberg, the gap was further whittled away. The seven men, although working in harmony, now only had 6'42" in hand as they started the 1260 metre climb up Knokteberg. Spaniard Vicente Garcia led the way up the smooth, non-cobbled climb.

Behind, at kilometre 165, a crash involved Matti Breschel (Team CSC). The Dane rider was rolling around on the pavement for some time and had to abandon. This crash was followed by another when Renaud Dion (Ag2r Prévoyance) took a spill on the right had side of the road. There was yet another crash, involving Fabian Wegmann (Gerolsteiner), Manuele Mori (Saunier Duval-Prodir), Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas) and Erik Zabel (Milram), but the race continued its march towards the Oude Kwaremont and left the German holding his left collarbone.

At this point, 80 kilometres to go, there was a noticeable building of speed in the peloton. T-Mobile, with help from Quickstep, was revving up the pace and had the whole group in one long line. The move put Marcus Burghardt in prime position to unload on the Oude Kwaremont.

The 23 year-old fired up the 2200 metre climb (averaging 4% gradient with 1600m of cobbles). His teammates setup his move and by the left-hand turn at the top the difference was made. Burghardt showed his form in recent races was no fluke and the weaker riders were being shot out the back.

The pace kept rising over the Paterberg, 20.3% maximum gradient and 360m long, and on to climb number seven, the Kortekeer. By the Kortekeer, the difference to the seven leaders was down to 3'58". This climb was the replacement for the near-by Koppenberg, which was deemed too dangerous due to the gaps between the cobbles.

The fact that Belgian's number one team, Quickstep, had missed putting a man in the day's escape was starting to become troublesome. The blue-men were moving to the front to start an offensive. After Steenbeekdries, 530m long and a dangerous descent, Sébastien Rosseler (Quickstep-Innergetic) pushed towards the Taaienberg for Boonen. The 2005 World Champ was finally coming forward to show himself. While Lorenzo Bernucci (T-Mobile) took a spill leading to the climb, compatriot Paolo Bettini was moving up.

Paolo Bettini
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

The World Champ came to the front and did a huge pull for his Quickstep teammate; the orders must have been for him to work as a super-domestique to Boonen. Meanwhile, Quickstep's Peter Van Petegem was hurting and drifting off the back. The move by Bettini and Rosseler did not succeed in an escape but it helped eliminate further men.

Running towards the Eikenberg, Luca Paolini (Liquigas) lost it on a right hand bend. He was quick to get back up but his bike needed mechanical help, forcing him and a waiting teammate into a long chase.

Kevin Hulsmans (Quickstep-Innergetic) and Johan Van Summeren (Predictor-Lotto) darted off the front on the Eikenberg (61 km to go). The duo, representing Belgian's super-squads, spent about five kilometres away before being pulled back; a further attempt by the teams to put their men up the road and to ease the pressure, but the pressure only increased.

CSC's Fabian Cancellara starting hammering shortly after the Berendries and he forced the favourites to react. He split the field on an undulating cobbled section and winner of Three Days of De Panne stage three, Gert Steegmans (Quickstep-Innergetic) was sent to follow. The Belgian joined the Swiss man for a ride, as they closed the gap to the leaders ahead.

The duo joined the front men and quickly Cancellara went to the business-end and started driving the new escape, minus Vicente Garcia, who had been dropped in the warfare. The move proved Cancellara to be strong but he lacked the right mix of men to make it to the finish clear of the chase.

Stuart O'Grady (Team CSC), Hulsmans, Van Summeren, Michael Boogerd (Rabobank), Leif Hoste (Predictor-Lotto), Daniele Bennati (Lampre-Fondital), Steegmans were part of a smaller move, which was chased by Bettini, Karsten Kroon (Team CSC) and Philippe Gilbert (Française Des Jeux). But the moves all merged before the start of the Muur of Geraardsbergen, leaving 17 kilometres to go.

The final podium
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

The front group went over the train tracks and it was immediately on the Muur, heading towards Moerbeke. The climb is nasty, with 475m of pavé and a maximum gradient of 19.8%, and was the perfect place for Ballan to stretch his legs. His teammate, Bennati, pushed forward with Boonen before Ballan rode clear.

2006 winner Boonen faded and left only Leif Hoste (Predictor-Lotto) to bridge up to Ballan. By the top, the two were flying on their way to victory. Kroon and Tomas Vaitkus (Discovery Channel) moved free to begin a chase but could not close on the two, who stayed about 15" ahead until the finish.

The Italian and Belgian traded equal pulls over the closing 10 kilometres. In the final 1500 metres there was a slight game of cat-n-mouse before Hoste opened the sprint that Ballan finished off.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Fotoreporter Sirotti

Images by Brecht Decaluwé/Cyclingnews.com

Images by Luc Claessen/www.ctm-images.com

Images by AFP


1 Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                          6.10.15 (41.97 km/h)
2 Leif Hoste (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                                        
3 Luca Paolini (Ita) Liquigas                                         0.05
4 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team CSC                                            
5 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Discovery Channel                                  
6 Tomas Vaitkus (Ltu) Discovery Channel                               0.13
7 Nick Nuyens (Bel) Cofidis                                               
8 Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana                                           
9 Michael Boogerd (Ned) Rabobank                                          
10 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team CSC                                      0.35
11 Jesús Del Nero (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir                              
12 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                                  
13 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) T-Mobile                                        
14 Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Liquigas                                         
15 Gregory Rast (Swi) Astana                                              
16 Steffen Wesemann (Swi) Wiesenhof-Felt                                  
17 Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Cofidis                                        
18 Cristian Moreni (Ita) Cofidis                                          
19 Daniele Bennati (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                                  
20 Björn Leukemans (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                              0.42
21 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Quickstep-Innergetic                           0.48
22 Gorik Gardeyn (Bel) Unibet.com                                     1.32
23 Andy Cappelle (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                       
24 Salvatore Commesso (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems                        
25 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Française Des Jeux                              
26 Frédéric Amorison (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                   
27 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Milram                                           
28 Maarten Den Bakker (Ned) Skil-Shimano                                  
29 Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Unibet.com                                          
30 Aart Vierhouten (Ned) Skil-Shimano                                     
31 Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Milram                                            
32 Bas Giling (Ned) Wiesenhof-Felt                                        
33 Martin Elmiger (Swi) Ag2r Prévoyance                                   
34 Anthony Geslin (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                  
35 Leon Van Bon (Ned) Rabobank                                            
36 Ralf Grabsch (Ger) Milram                                              
37 Enrico Franzoi (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                                   
38 Volodymyr Bileka (Ukr) Discovery Channel                               
39 Bert Roesems (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                                     
40 Markel Irizar (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                  
41 Matthew Wilson (Aus) Unibet.com                                        
42 Filip Meirhaeghe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                    
43 Stijn Devolder (Bel) Discovery Channel                                 
44 Koen De Kort (Ned) Astana                                              
45 Marcus Ljungqvist (Swe) Team CSC                                       
46 Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas                                    
47 Raivis Belohvosciks (Lat) Saunier Duval-Prodir                         
48 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Unibet.com                                       
49 Oscar Freire (Spa) Rabobank                                            
50 Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                       
51 Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                               
52 Juan Antonio Flecha (Spa) Rabobank                                     
53 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team CSC                                       
54 Jörg Ludewig (Ger) Wiesenhof-Felt                                      
55 Andreas Klier (Ger) T-Mobile                                           
56 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Skil-Shimano                                  
57 Kim Kirchen (Lux) T-Mobile                                             
58 Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Astana                                            
59 Peter Van Petegem (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                           
60 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Crédit Agricole                                 2.57
61 Franck Renier (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                   
62 Matthew White (Aus) Discovery Channel                                  
63 Vincent Jérôme (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                  
64 Elio Aggiano (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems                              
65 Christophe Laurent (Fra) Crédit Agricole                               
66 Laurent Mangel (Fra) Ag2r Prévoyance                                   
67 Alessandro Cortinovis (Ita) Milram                                     
68 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank                                           
69 Evert Verbist (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen              
70 Imanol Erviti (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                                   
71 Francisco José Ventoso (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir                      
72 David Boucher (Fra) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                       
73 Fabio Baldato (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                                    
74 David Kopp (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                          
75 Massimiliano Mori (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                            6.50
76 Wim Vansevenant (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                                  
77 Kevin Van Impe (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                              
78 Paolo Fornaciari (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                             6.55
79 Igor Abakoumov (Bel) Astana                                            
80 Frédéric Guesdon (Fra) Française Des Jeux                              
81 Gert Steegmans (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                              
82 Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                                    
83 Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                              
84 Fabio Sacchi (Ita) Milram                                          7.10
85 William Bonnet (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                   
86 Bernhard Eisel (Aut) T-Mobile                                          
87 Olaf Pollack (Ger) Wiesenhof-Felt                                      
88 Arnaud Labbe (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                    
89 Alexandre Usov (Blr) Ag2r Prévoyance                                   
90 Baden Cooke (Aus) Unibet.com                                           
91 Ludovic Auger (Fra) Française Des Jeux                                 
92 Mauro Da Dalto (Ita) Liquigas                                          
93 Claudio Corioni (Ita) Lampre-Fondital                                  
94 Floris Goesinnen (Ned) Skil-Shimano                                9.47
95 Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas                                   10.22
96 Christophe Mengin (Fra) Française Des Jeux                             
97 Yohann Gène (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                     
98 Rony Martias (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                    
99 Sven Krauss (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                         
100 José Vicente Garcia (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                            
101 Steffen Weigold (Ger) Tinkoff Credit Systems                     12.37
102 Alan Pérez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                    
103 Pedro Horrillo (Spa) Rabobank                                         
104 Laszlo Bodrogi (Hun) Crédit Agricole                                  
105 Tom Stamsnijder (Ned) Gerolsteiner                                    
106 Wim De Vocht (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                                    
107 Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                  
108 Kevin De Weert (Bel) Cofidis                                          
109 Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quickstep-Innergetic                         
110 Sven Renders (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen              
111 Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen        
112 Allan Johansen (Den) Team CSC                                         
113 Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis                                        
114 Thierry Marichal (Bel) Française Des Jeux                             
115 Matthé Pronk (Ned) Unibet.com                                         
116 Jan Boven (Ned) Rabobank                                              
DNF Steven De Jongh (Ned) Quickstep-Innergetic                            
DNF Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                               
DNF Roy Sentjens (Bel) Predictor-Lotto                                    
DNF Markus Eichler (Ger) Unibet.com                                       
DNF Jimmy Casper (Fra) Unibet.com                                         
DNF Matti Breschel (Den) Team CSC                                         
DNF Kasper Klostergård (Den) Team CSC                                     
DNF Lars Michaelsen (Den) Team CSC                                        
DNF José Joaquín Rojas (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                             
DNF Eric Berthou (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne                                   
DNF Florent Brard (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne                                  
DNF Vicente Reynes (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                                 
DNF Luis León Sánchez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                              
DNF Nicolas Portal (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne                                 
DNF Andoni Aranaga (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                
DNF Unai Uribarri (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                 
DNF Iban Mayoz (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                    
DNF Andoni Lafuente (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                               
DNF Iban Iriondo (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                                  
DNF Koldo Fernández (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi                               
DNF David Millar (GBr) Saunier Duval-Prodir                               
DNF Luciano Pagliarini (Bra) Saunier Duval-Prodir                         
DNF Ángel Gómez Gómez (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir                          
DNF Raúl Alarcón (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir                               
DNF Manuele Mori (Ita) Saunier Duval-Prodir                               
DNF Stéphane Poulhiès (Fra) Ag2r Prévoyance                               
DNF Loyd Mondory (Fra) Ag2r Prévoyance                                    
DNF Christophe Riblon (Fra) Ag2r Prévoyance                               
DNF Yuriy Krivtsov (Ukr) Ag2r Prévoyance                                  
DNF Renaud Dion (Fra) Ag2r Prévoyance                                     
DNF Mathieu Claude (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                 
DNF Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                               
DNF Michiel Elijzen (Ned) Cofidis                                         
DNF Tyler Farrar (USA) Cofidis                                            
DNF Mathieu Heijboer (Ned) Cofidis                                        
DNF Sébastien Hinault (Fra) Crédit Agricole                               
DNF Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                   
DNF Jimmy Engoulvent (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                
DNF Julian Dean (NZl) Crédit Agricole                                     
DNF Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) Française Des Jeux                           
DNF Christophe Detilloux (Bel) Française Des Jeux                         
DNF Fabien Patanchon (Fra) Française Des Jeux                             
DNF Sebastian Lang (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                     
DNF Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                     
DNF Oscar Gatto (Ita) Gerolsteiner                                        
DNF Marcel Strauss (Swi) Gerolsteiner                                     
DNF Bert Grabsch (Ger) T-Mobile                                           
DNF Servais Knaven (Ned) T-Mobile                                         
DNF Lorenzo Bernucci (Ita) T-Mobile                                       
DNF Roger Hammond (GBr) T-Mobile                                          
DNF Roberto Petito (Ita) Liquigas                                         
DNF Manuel Quinziato (Ita) Liquigas                                       
DNF Murilo Fischer (Bra) Liquigas                                         
DNF Erik Zabel (Ger) Milram                                               
DNF Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Milram                                           
DNF Volodymyr Dyudya (Ukr) Milram                                         
DNF Bram De Groot (Ned) Rabobank                                          
DNF Guennadi Mikhailov (Rus) Astana                                       
DNF Aaron Kemps (Aus) Astana                                              
DNF Benoît Joachim (Lux) Astana                                           
DNF Pavel Padrnos (Cze) Discovery Channel                                 
DNF Steve Cummings (GBr) Discovery Channel                                
DNF Antonio Cruz (USA) Discovery Channel                                  
DNF Niko Eeckhout (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen             
DNF Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen         
DNF Johan Coenen (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen              
DNF Glenn D'Hollander (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen         
DNF Kurt Hovelynck (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen            
DNF James Vanlandschoot (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                
DNF Jan Kuyckx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                         
DNF Kevin Neirynck (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Tönissteiner                     
DNF Robert Wagner (Ger) Wiesenhof-Felt                                    
DNF Daniel Musiol (Ger) Wiesenhof-Felt                                    
DNF Stefan Van Dijck (Ned) Wiesenhof-Felt                                 
DNF Felix Odebrecht (Ger) Wiesenhof-Felt                                  
DNF Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems                         
DNF Ilya Chernetsky (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems                          
DNF Nikolai Trussov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems                          
DNF Ivan Rovny (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems                               
DNF Anton Mindlin (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems                            
DNF Kenny Van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano                                   
DNF Christian Müller (Ger) Skil-Shimano                                   
DNF Christoph Meschenmoser (Ger) Skil-Shimano                             
DNF David Deroo (Fra) Skil-Shimano                                        

ProTour standings

Individual ranking
1 Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team    56 pts
2 Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana                                          53
3 Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank                                    52
4 Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - Fondital                            50
5 Davide Rebellin (Ita) Gerolsteiner                                   42
6 Kim Kirchen (Lux) T-Mobile Team                                      41
7 Leif Hoste (Bel) Predictor - Lotto                                   40
8 Allan Davis (Aus) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team                 40
9 Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) Astana                                    38
10 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                        38
11 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quickstep - Innergetic                             37
12 Luca Paolini (Ita) Liquigas                                         36
13 Stefan Schumacher (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                35
14 Robbie Mcewen (Aus) Predictor - Lotto                               33
15 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team CSC                                        30
16 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) Lampre - Fondital                              30
17 Stuart O'grady (Aus) Team CSC                                       29
18 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas                                    28
19 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team             25
20 Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team            25
21 David Lopez Garcia (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                           23
22 Tomas Vaitkus (Ltu) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team              20
23 Erik Zabel (Ger) Team Milram                                        20
24 Jens Voigt (Ger) Team CSC                                           20
25 Nick Nuyens (Bel) Cofidis - Le Crédit par Téléphone                 15
26 Cadel Evans (Aus) Predictor - Lotto                                 15
27 Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana                                       10
28 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Team Milram                               10
29 Frank Schleck (Lux) Team CSC                                        10
30 Michael Boogerd (Ned) Rabobank                                       7
31 Riccardo Ricco (Ita) Saunier Duval - Prodir                          6
32 Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                           5
33 Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi                    5
34 Joaquin Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                      3
35 Daniele Bennati (Ita) Lampre - Fondital                              3
36 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team           3
37 Koldo Fernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi                            3
38 David Millar (GBr) Saunier Duval - Prodir                            3
39 Matteo Bono (Ita) Lampre - Fondital                                  3
40 Alexandr Kolobnev (Rus) Team CSC                                     3
41 Jean-Patrick Nazon (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                             3
42 Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Saunier Duval - Prodir          2
43 Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Liquigas                                     2
44 Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas                                       2
45 Mirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Team Milram                                   2
46 Sebastian Siedler (Ger) Team Milram                                  2
47 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Crédit Agricole                                   1
48 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank                                         1
49 Sven Krauss (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                       1
50 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Bouygues Telecom                                 1
51 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Quickstep - Innergetic                       1
52 Sébastien Joly (Fra) Française des Jeux                              1
53 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                                1
Team ranking
1 Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team                                   71 pts
2 Team CSC                                                             66
3 Liquigas                                                             61
4 Caisse d'Epargne                                                     53
5 Astana                                                               45
6 Lampre-Fondital                                                      45
7 Predictor-Lotto                                                      45
8 Team Milram                                                          42
9 Ag2R Prevoyance                                                      42
10 T-Mobile Team                                                       42
11 Saunier Duval - Prodir                                              40
12 Cofidis, Le Credit Par Telephone                                    39
13 Rabobank                                                            37
14 Quick Step - Innergetic                                             35
15 Credit Agricole                                                     20
16 Unibet.com                                                          19
17 Française des Jeux                                                  16
18 Bouygues Telecom                                                    16
19 Gerolsteiner                                                        16
20 Euskaltel - Euskadi                                                 15
Country ranking
1 Spain                                                               174 pts
2 Italy                                                               166
3 Germany                                                             130
4 Australia                                                           118
5 Belgium                                                              92
6 Slovenia                                                             55
7 Luxembourg                                                           51
8 Kazakhstan                                                           48
9 Netherlands                                                          37
10 Russian Federation                                                  28
11 Lithuania                                                           20
12 France                                                               6
13 Ukraine                                                              3
14 Great Britain                                                        3
15 Czech Republic                                                       2
16 Norway                                                               1