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Clear blue water: The Levi Leipheimer diary 2005

Levi Leipheimer shot to prominence when he made the podium at the 2001 Vuelta while riding for US Postal. He spent three years at Rabobank before joining the German Gerolsteiner team for 2005, where he is one of the team's main men for stage race general classifications.

Leipheimer has twice finished in the top ten at the Tour de France, and this year will aim higher if his form allows. "We'll have to wait and see," he says. Follow Levi's progress to the Tour and beyond on Cyclingnews.

July 10, 2005

Waiting for the real race

Hey everyone,

Levi at the start
Photo ©: Luc Claessen
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Another interesting day on the bike. Ullrich crashed on the first descent because it was really windy and he was riding deep rims. That sometimes happens but he went off the road and his team waited for him. He was bleeding but I don't think it was very serious. Dave Zabriskie dropped out today, probably because of his injuries but I have not spoken to him since. Last but not least the race got a new leader, Jens Voigt.

I felt really good today. I'm waiting for the real race to begin in two days from now so I'm riding on the conservative side. Today there were a few category three climbs and a category one climb but it wasn't really aggressive. Discovery was a lot stronger today but I think they will have their work cut out for them. It's probably a relief at this point in the race to let another team defend the jersey. I still think Discovery did too much work in the first week and maybe they're paying for it now.

Odessa and Levi!
Photo ©: Sirotti
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We flew into Grenoble today after the stage. It was a good transfer and we're in a great hotel. It's a perfect situation for the rest day. We do some press tomorrow, ride, more press, hopefully lie around at some point and get massage. That's about it. I'll leave you until the day after tomorrow when I have more racing to talk about.

See you then,


July 9, 2005

A strange day

Hey everyone,

Lance Armstrong (Discovery Channel)
Photo ©: AFP
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I guess I spoke too soon yesterday. It was actually pretty hard today. I ended up in a group of 31 riders at the end and I don't really know what went on behind us.

I think the field fell apart basically. It was strange because Lance was left alone in the front group. This is not something we've seen happen to Discovery/Postal in the past six tours. He's never been alone when there are that many riders in the front.

It just goes to show what a strange day it was in the race.

At one point I had to go off the road because I was moving up on the outside and a guy didn't see me so I went into the grass and dirt. This was at the time when attacks were happening and it was so hard for me to get back up to the front.

Peter Wrolich
Photo ©: Jon Devich
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We had a tailwind today so once again our average speed was crazy fast. I have less free time today for some reason and I'm tired so this diary entry is short.

Sorry, I'll make it up to you in the days to come…

Stay tuned for more exciting racing!


2005 diary entries

Tour of Germany

Levi and Odessa
Photo ©: AFP
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Levi in the leader jersey at Tour de Suisse
Photo ©: Russell Standring
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Tour de France

Tour de Georgia

Cyclingnews interviews with Levi Leipheimer

February 2005
September 2003
May 2003
November 2002
January 2002