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71st Tour de Suisse - PT

Switzerland, June 16-24, 2007

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Stage 9 - June 24: Bern - Bern TT, 33.7km

Live commentary by Bjorn Haake

Live coverage starts: 15:30 CEST
Estimated finish: 17:15 CES

Complete live report

15:08 CEST   
Cyclingnews welcomes you to the live coverage from the ninth and final stage of the 2007 Tour de Suisse. It is a time trial around Bern and one person will be extra motivated: Fabian Cancellara, who was raised in this area. Of course it helps out that he's decent in time trials, having won the Worlds last year. He also won the first stage in Olten, a 3.8 kilometre race that would be called a prologue in most other stage races.

With five riders within around 30 seconds of each other this should make for an interesting day for the overall title as well.

15:26 CEST   
Since Fabian Cancellara was not well placed in the overall, he has started early. He has just finished and has crushed the time of teammate Stuart O'Grady, beating him by almost three minutes! Cancellara's time is 41'46.

15:29 CEST   
Stefan Schumacher from Gerolsteiner started strongly. With 10 kilometres to go he is only 26 seconds behind Cancellara's time.

15:38 CEST   
Australia's Matthew White is currently in fifth position. He is only two seconds behind Leif Hoste.

15:41 CEST   
There are a good 30 more riders to start. Jens Voigt with 12'50 and Beat Zberg with 12'35 have just passed the first time check.

15:44 CEST   
Erik Zabel has finished the race in 48'03

15:49 CEST   
It is another beautiful day in Switzerland. How do they do that? The riders have great conditions out on the road.

15:53 CEST   
The Swedish time trial champion Larsson is out on the road. It is slightly downhill and he is blasting down.

15:58 CEST   
The course is not easy, there are a few uphills where the riders are struggling up slowly. Gusev of Discovery Channel just has an experience with a Swiss hill.

15:58 CEST   
Gusev has a 12'17 at the first time check at km 8.3. Not bad.

15:59 CEST   
Thomas Lövkvist (Swe) Française Des Jeux passes his two-minute man.

16:01 CEST   
Lövkvist looks very comfortable on his bike. He is doing a good time trial.

16:02 CEST   
The top hasn't changed. It is still Cancellara with a time that will be hard to beat.

16:02 CEST   
Beat Zberg manages to get 5th right now.

16:04 CEST   
Andreas Klöden has just pulverized the first intermediate time!

16:05 CEST   
After 8.3 kilometres, he is 10 seconds faster than Cancellara!!! Will there be an unexpected outcome or did he start too fast?

16:05 CEST   
Klöden is now on the flat Swiss roads and he is flying!

16:06 CEST   
At km 22, at the last time check, three riders are approaching at the same time. Do they know they are riding an individual time trial?

16:07 CEST   
Marchante is now on a small secondary road.

16:08 CEST   
Of course, in an individual time trial drafting is not allowed and the riders have to stay a certain amount behind and to the side of other riders.

16:10 CEST   
Schleck is now starting. He predicted that Cancellara will win the time trail "for sure". And he hasn't given up on the overall, either. He is 33 seconds behind Efimkin in 5th place.

16:11 CEST   
Damiano Cunego is out on the road. He is labouring hard, and maybe a little too hard. Andreas Klöden looks smoother.

16:13 CEST   
Carrara from Unibet.com is starting. He is fourth and has given the team some reason to smile, which they didn't have too often this year, being excluded from all major tours despite being automatically qualified by UCI standards.

16:14 CEST   
And now Karpets is on the start ramp. He is third overall.

16:15 CEST   
Gusev is now on this secondary road that looks more like a farm road. There is probably more traffic with all the team cars than all of last week together.

16:16 CEST   
And the spectators are out and enjoy a nice Sunday afternoon.

Gusev has the third best time at km 22! He is 47 seconds slower than Cancellara.

16:18 CEST   
Kirchen has now started, too. He is a bit hard to recognize in his T-Mobile colours as we have been accustomed to see him in his Champion of Luxembourg jersey. But in the TT they can't wear those if they didn't win the national TT title.

16:18 CEST   
And the last rider is starting, Vladimir Efimkin.

16:19 CEST   
Next Sunday many countries will have their national Championships and then there will be a major reshuffle anyway.

16:21 CEST   
Klöden at the second split. He is now behind Cancellara

16:22 CEST   
Kirchen doesn't seem to be too comfortable. He is sliding back on his saddle.

16:23 CEST   
Schleck at the first split. 14th with a 12'30. That may not be enough for passing the four in front in the overall.

16:26 CEST   
Karpets approaches first split

16:26 CEST   
Looking good, only a second behind Cancellara.

16:27 CEST   
Kirchen is now on the uphill before the first split at km 8.3 He is out of the saddle. Now he switches from the left side of the road to the right, so he can take the inside of the slight right-hand bend.

16:28 CEST   
Looks like he is way off the front runners.

16:29 CEST   
Yes, a 12'30, over half a minute behind Schumacher.

Gusev at the finish in third, with 42'51"

16:31 CEST   
Efimkin has virtually the same time as Kirchen.

16:32 CEST   
The virtual overall currently has Karpets only one second behind his teammate Efimkin. Looks like there will be a chance in the GC before the end of the day!

16:33 CEST   
Karpets is pushing a huge year.

16:33 CEST   
Larsson sprints to the finish. He just gets into the top 5 for now!

16:34 CEST   
Klöden finishes

16:34 CEST   
He beats Schumacher, but can't get to Cancellara's time. Second place for him for now.

16:38 CEST   
Efimkin looks not as smooth as some of the other time trial specialists. He is stomping on those pedals. Maybe he is also panicking a bit as there is no doubt he gets info from the times of the others.

16:39 CEST   
The Swiss afternoon sun is shining on Cunego and his aero helmet.

16:40 CEST   
Karpets is riding through a small town, oblivious to the speed limit sign. Those guys are amazingly fast.

16:40 CEST   
Fränk Schleck is now on another uphill.

16:41 CEST   
He is approaching the second a split and he is three minutes behind Cancellara in 22nd.

16:42 CEST   
Carrara is now riding up the same section. Has he gained time on Schleck already?

16:43 CEST   
And Karpets passes the spectators that have lined the small uphill next to a wheat field just before the second time check.

16:44 CEST   
He passes the check in 5th, 36 seconds behind Cancellara.

16:44 CEST   
He is now enjoying the fast descent on this narrow road out in the country side.

16:46 CEST   
As he enters the town of Gümligen he has to scramble to make the right turn at the end of the downhill. It's narrow and the curb is fast approaching.

16:47 CEST   
Kirchen comes through with the 15th time. At this point from all the overall contenders Karpets looks the most likely. He is stile pushing a big gear as he is inching closer to the finish.

16:48 CEST   
Kirchen also as managed to make the right turn. But the descent after that is also one where the riders will have to concentrate hard to not go off the road.

16:49 CEST   
Devolder is approaching the finish. He can make the top 5.

Yes, he makes it.

16:50 CEST   
The last rider, Efimkin in yellow, comes through the second split over two minutes behind Cancellara, in 33rd. Good bye, yellow.

16:50 CEST   
He is now hitting the descent.

16:50 CEST   
And has no problems with the right turn. Maybe he is going down slower than the others?

16:51 CEST   
Karpets is on a really long straight away.

16:51 CEST   
And at the end there is a sharp right. That's where all the spectators have gathered.

16:52 CEST   
Cunego does a great race. He is 15th for the moment.

16:53 CEST   
Efimkin is now also on a long straight away and runs the red light of the pedestrian crossing.

16:54 CEST   
Karpets rides underneath a giant gate and onto the cobbles. No Swiss race without some cobbles in the older parts of town.

16:55 CEST   
Schleck finishes. Almost three minutes behind. He'll be disappointed.

16:55 CEST   
Karpets is now on the final uphill. His long legs push the big gear while he is seated.

16:56 CEST   
Carrara is on the finishing straight.

16:56 CEST   
He grimaces as he pushes the last ounce of strength out of his body. 2'35 and 20th place

16:57 CEST   
And Karpets already arrives!!!

16:57 CEST   
He is 1'06" behind and gets sixth. Enough to win the overall!!!

16:59 CEST   
Kirchen now shows the efforts. It doesn't look too fluid anymore. The upper body is rocking left and right.

17:00 CEST   
But he tries everything, tongue hanging out.

17:00 CEST   
He is 2'15 behind and gets 15th for now.

17:01 CEST   
Efimkin is the last rider on the course. He is now entering the last kilometre.

17:02 CEST   
He already knows he has lost the jersey. At least it is to his teammate Karpets.

17:03 CEST   
Efimkin loses more than 3 minutes!

17:13 CEST   
Cancellara gets ready for the podium.

17:15 CEST   
Thanks for joining the Cyclingnews coverage of the 2007 Tour de Suisse. We hope you enjoyed the exciting finish to this race and don't forget to check out then full report, results and great photos later today on our website.

Next stop Tour de France! Stay tuned.

Results

1 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team CSC        41.46
2 Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana              0.20
3 Stefan Schumacher (Ger) Gerolsteiner     0.33 
4 Stijn Devolder (Bel) Discovery Channel   1.04
5 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Discovery Channel   1.05
6 Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Caisse d'Epargne  1.06

Final general classification

1 Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Caisse d'Epargne
2 Kim Kirchen (Lux) T-Mobile
3 Stijn Devolder (Bel) Discovery Channel
4 Matteo Carrara (Ita) Unibet.com
5 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-Fondital
6 Vladimir Efimkin (Rus) Caisse d'Epargne

 

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