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4th Paris-Corrèze - 2.3

France, September 24-26, 2004

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Stage 1 - September 24: Contres - Saint Amand Montrond, 176.6 km

Kirsipuu wins again and promotes Gerrans

By Jean-François Quénet, in St-Amand-Montrond

Jaan Kirsipuu (Ag2r)
Photo ©: JF Quenet
Click for larger image

Jaan Kirsipuu is still a true winner. He hasn't disappeared from the scene since he won stage 1 in the Tour de France. Just like one year ago when he outsprinted Baden Cooke, he took stage 1 of Paris-Corrèze again on the same finishing line of St-Amand-Montrond. Not in a bunch sprint but solo!

Kirsipuu was a member of a 36 man breakaway that went after just 100 kilometres of racing. All the major teams were represented, but Ag2r was definitely the best one with four riders, Jean-Patrick Nazon, Christophe Oriol and Simon Gerrans being there in addition to the usual leader of the team who has decided to leave and join Crédit Agricole for the next two seasons.

Gerrans took the bonus on the line when the bunch came the first time with 20km to go. He also controlled some attacks by Jurgen van de Walle of Chocolate Jacques. "After the last climb we decided we would ride the sprint for Nazon who was feeling better than me," Kirsipuu explained. "But I had still had to follow the moves. The first one was the right one."

Benjamin Levécot of Oktos was the first to attack with 7km to go. "He was so strong that I wasn't able to do my turn," the Estonian added. "I've won because of my experience."

With 4km to go, Kirsipuu went solo and resisted to the group where his teammates were busy watching the danger. "It's going to be hard for GC but we have different options," he added. "Oriol is a good climber but I don't how his condition is now after he was sick at the Vuelta and pulled out. Our man could well be the new one, he's looking really strong."

Best young rider is Philippe Gilbert (
Photo ©: JF Quenet
Click for larger image

Kirsipuu was referring to Simon Gerrans, Ag2r's new signing from Australia who already has the Tour de la Corrèze amongst his seven wins as an amateur in France with Team U Nantes-Atlantique this year. He is now showing how quick he's able to pick the professional level. After stage 1, Gerrans is fourth on GC, just two seconds down on Philippe Gilbert from, who was already the best young rider at the Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under in January and is still very competitive at the end of the season. He is one of the hot favourites for Paris-Corrèze.

Only 35 riders are contenders for the GC. The main bunch crossed the line 48 minutes and 20 seconds behind Kirsipuu after getting lost and riding 14 extra kilometres, but was finally classified 16'54 down.


Images by Jean-Francois Quenet/


1 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) AG2r Prévoyance                                     
2 Robert Förster (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                   0.02
3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel)                                       
4 Ivan Terenin (Rus) Russian National Team                                
5 Bastiaan Giling (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                   
6 Zbigniew Piatek (Pol) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf                  
7 Jukka Vastaranta (Fin) Rabobank TT III                                  
8 Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Russian National Team                             
9 Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone                  
10 Christophe Brandt (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                     
11 Koen De Kort (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                     
12 Sylvain Calzati (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                        
13 Frédéric Gabriel (Fra)                         
14 Hans De Clercq (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                        
15 Franck Renier (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                             
16 David Boucher (Fra) Oktos-Saint Quentin                                
17 Sébastien Joly (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                   
18 Jens Renders (Bel)                             
19 Jurgen Van De Walle (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf             
20 Marek Rutkiewicz (Pol) Action ATI                                      
21 Maryan Hary (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                               
22 Pavel Brutt (Rus) Lokomotiv                                            
23 Christophe Moreau (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                
24 Christophe Oriol (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                                 
25 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Ag2R Prevoyance                                    
26 Krzysztof Krzywy (Pol) Action ATI                                      
27 Nicolas Fritsch (Fra)                                       
28 Ben Day (Aus)                                  
29 Andrey Pchelkin (Rus) Russian National Team                            
30 Jean-Patrick Nazon (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                               
31 Benjamin Levecot (Fra) Oktos-Saint Quentin                             
32 Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                    0.07
33 Thomas Ziegler (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                  0.25
34 Nikolay Trousov (Rus) Lokomotiv                                    5.20
35 Leon Van Bon (Ned) Lotto-Domo                                          
36 Sergeï Krushevskiy (Uzb) Oktos-Saint Quentin                      13.32
37 Giovann Bernaudeau (Fra) Brioches La Boulangere                   15.58
38 Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                16.54
39 Gert Steegmans (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                        
40 Bartosz Huzarski (Pol) Action ATI                                      
41 Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Lotto-Domo                                       
42 Marcin Osinski (Pol) Action ATI                                        
43 David Breard (Fra) Auber 93                                            
44 Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Lokomotiv                                       
45 Guillaume Auger (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                        
46 Rémy Pauriol (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance                                     
47 Pierre Bourquenoud (Swi) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                     
48 Maxim Gourov (Kaz) Oktos-Saint Quentin                                 
49 Michael Blanchy (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf                 
50 Christophe Rinero (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                      
51 Adam Wadecki (Pol) Action ATI                                          
52 Kristof Trouve (Bel)                           
53 Glenn d'Hollander (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                     
54 Wim Vansevenant (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                       
55 Michel Van Haecke (Bel)                        
56 Bernhard Kohl (Aut) Rabobank TT III                                    
57 Anton Mindlin (Rus) Lokomotiv                                          
58 Sebastian Lang (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                      
59 Andrey Mizurov (Kaz) Oktos                                             
60 Volker Ordowski (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                     
61 Serguei Klimov (Rus) Lokomotiv                                         
62 Matthias Russ (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                       
63 Dennis Kraft (Ger) Action ATI                                          
64 Sergey Lazarev (Rus) Russian National Team                             
65 Bradley Mcgee (Aus)                                         
66 René Haselbacher (Aut) Gerolsteiner                                    
67 Jeremy Yates (NZl) Crédit Agricole                                     
68 Maxim Averin (Rus) Lokomotiv                                           
69 Renaud Dion (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                            
70 Laurent Brochard (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                                 
71 Frédéric Bessy (Fra) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone                  
72 Koos Moerenhout (Ned) Lotto-Domo                                       
73 Sergey Poluhin (Rus) Russian National Team                             
74 Sandy Casar (Fra)                                           
75 John Nilsson (Swe) Auber 93                                            
76 Nicolas Vogondy (Fra)                                       
77 Saulius Ruskys (Ltu) Oktos-Saint Quentin                               
78 Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Crédit Agricole                              
79 Marcus Fothen (Ger) Gerolsteiner                                       
80 Léonardo Duque (Col) Chocolade Jacques Wincor-Nixdorf                  
81 Lénaïc Olivier (Fra) Auber 93                                          
82 Christophe Edaleine (Fra) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone             
83 Patrice Halgand (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                  
84 Nicolas Reynaud (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                        
85 Mauricio Alberto Ardila Cano (Col) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf    
86 Ashley Humbert (Aus)                                        
87 Freddy Bichot (Fra)                                         
88 David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone                 
89 Anthony Geslin (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                            
90 Loïc Lamouller (Fra) Auber 93                                          
91 Eric Leblacher (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                   
92 Walter Beneteau (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                           
93 Yannick Talabardon (Fra) Auber 93                                      
94 Denys Kostyuk (Ukr) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf                   
95 Nicolas Portal (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance                                   
96 Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra)                                     
97 Matthieu Sprick (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                           
98 Alexander Serov (Rus) Lokomotiv                                        
99 Stéphane Barthe (Fra) Oktos                                            
100 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                         
101 Nicolas Dulac (Fra) R.A.G.T. Semences-MG Rover                        
102 Maxim Karpatchev (Rus) Russian National Team                          
103 Laurent Paumier (Fra) Auber 93                                        
104 Gert Vanderaerden (Bel)                       
105 Kurt Van De Wouwer (Bel)                      
106 Damien Monier (Fra) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone                  
107 Florent Brard (Fra) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf                  
108 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Crédit Agricole                             
109 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère                            
110 Peter Wuyts (Bel)                             
111 Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, le credit par Telephone                  
112 Christophe Riblon (Fra) Ag2R Prevoyance                               
113 Eric Berthou (Fra) R.A.G.T Semences-MG Rover                          
114 Niels Brouzes (Fra) Auber 93                                          
115 Mathieu Cricquelion (Bel) Chocolade Jacques Wincor-Nixdorf            
116 Michiel Elijzen (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                 
117 Damien Nazon (Fra) Crédit Agricole                                    
118 Mark De Maar (Ned) Rabobank TT III                                    

General classification after stage 1

1 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) Ag2r-Prevoyance
4 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Ag2r-Prevoyance