|Cyclingnews TV News Tech Features Road MTB BMX Cyclo-cross Track Photos Fitness Letters Search Forum|
89th Tour de France - Grand Tour
France, July 6-28, 2002
Complete Live Report
Start time: 10:00 CEST
Interestingly, the organisers have not changed the start order (it goes on GC in reverse order). Thus the last seven starters will all be ONCE riders. Lance Armstrong will start eighth last.
Favourites for today include Armstrong, Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano (ONCE), Tyler Hamilton (CSC-Tiscali), Levi Leipheimer (Rabobank), Santiago Botero (Kelme), Joseba Beloki (ONCE), Dario Frigo (Tacconi), David Millar (Cofidis), Bobby Julich (Telekom), Raimondas Rumsas (Lampre) and Serguei Gontchar (Fassa Bortolo). Brad McGee (FDJeux.com) and Laszlo Bodrogi (Mapei) are also chances to break the top 10.
Weather report: Today is the best day of the Tour so far. Temperatures in the mid to high 20's. Wind is a light breeze from the NNE. It's an off shore breeze that will pick up as the afternoon goes on, meaning that there will be a tailwind in the last stretch.
Speaking of O'Grady, "The Freckle" hasn't had an easy road to travel this year. His operation obviously took a lot out of him and the troubles with the heart palpitations and the bad luck the team has experienced so far have made it virtually impossible to keep his sights set on the Green Jersey.
"At the start of the Tour I had a bit of hope that I would be able to wear it again; but that thought has left my mind completely now. If I can win a stage my Tour will be successful already. It goes better and better as days pass though."
Stuart finished twice 6th, once 8th and twice in 10th position last week.
Best time at the 35 km check is Thor Hushovd, who rode through in 45'49.
At 46 km, Hushovd went through in 59'51, so he's on course for quite a respectable time today.
Magnien surpasses Dekker with a time of 1'06.34, followed by Seigneur at 3 seconds and then Dekker. But Durand, who is 44 seconds up on Magnien at km 46, will go faster than these three.
ONCE's Mikel Predera, who punctured in the team time trial and is thus not very high up on GC, went through 19.5 km in 25'56, the best so far.
Pradera is still on track to beat Durand, going through 35 km in 44'42, quicker than both Bruseghin and Durand.
"With Aart Vierhouten and Verbrugghe out, it was time to change tactics. Kirsipuu will be gone soon too. Then we only have Telekom and Lotto interested in a mass-sprint, but I will be saving my team. It might sound like I'm a braggart but it is a fact that I am the fastest man in this Tour. Last year Zabel had a hard time keeping Stuart O'Grady from the Green, but this fight will be even harder. In the final sprint I hardly feel my pedals. I want the Green Jersey already this Wednesday."
"It is no surprise to me that Bradley won on Sunday. We definitely are the four best Australian riders, myself, McGee, O'Grady and Baden. I knew that McGee had his mind set on Avranches and the Cooke would play it perfectly by making the gap. It is neither a coincidence that we are all riders who have been brought up on the track, and we master speed and sprints. Us Australians, we are adventurers, men who will do anything for their job."
US Postal's Victor Hugo Peña has set the best time at the 35 km mark of 44'25, bettering Pradera's time by 17 seconds. The Colombian is an excellent tester against the clock, and won a time trial stage of the Giro d'Italia.
Ludo Dierckxsens is making a run at Durand's time, having gone through 46 km in 58'28. Obviously having a great last half.
Victor Hugo Peña is racing towards the best time of the day, having gone through 46 km in 57'36. It seems as though a fast start is not the best tactic - depending on how the legs feel of course. Dierckxsens finishes in 1'05.47, which will give him the fourth best time once Peña finishes.
Antonio Tauler (Kelme) has gone through 19.5 km in 26'01, second best time today after Pradera. Credit Agricole's Anthony Morin is also on track for a good time, as he is 29 seconds behind Pena at 46 km.
Toni Tauler has gone through 35 km in 44'08, the quickest of the day. And Mapei's Laszlo Bodrogi, who finished 10th in the prologue, has passed 19.5 km in a blistering time of 25'19. He is hoping for another top 10 ride today.
114 riders are now on the course. A pair to watch shortly will be Brad McGee (FDJ.com), starting at 13:43 and aiming for a top 10. Right behind him is yesterday's attack monster Raivis Belohvosciks (Lampre), who is normally a good time trialist but yesterday's efforts may have taken it out of him. We'll see.
A weather update from out on the parcours, where there are a lot of people out enjoying the sunshine. The first two thirds of the parcours is in the countyside and is pretty flat. The wind is from the NNE and it's an off shore breeze. There is a light headwind at first, but this is negligible because the start is in the town. The it's out into the countryside, where there is a light crosswind from the right hand side. Finally the riders hit the beach front, with a 10 km/h tailwind from their left quarter. This will pick up in the afternoon.
Hungarian time trial champion Laszlo Bodrogi has set the benchmark for today, finishing the 52 km course in 1'02.43. He is looking good for at least a top 10 finish, possibly a top 5.
Meanwhile, Bodrogi's teammate Pedro Horillo has finished in 1'05.03, 5th best time today.
Raivis Belohvosciks (Lampre) is past 35 kilometres, but has not set any records yet. Bradley McGee goes through 35 km in 44'08, fifth best time. Telekom's Bobby Julich follows him in 44'28, 9th best time.
Sandy Casar (FDJ) finishes in 1'05.49, 12th best time.
Richard Virenque (Domo) starts with a clear aim to ride fast today.
Marc Wauters (Rabobank) comes through 35 km in 43'41, third best time so far.
Laurent Dufaux (Alessio) has not done himself any favours today, losing four minutes to Bodrogi as he finishes in 1'06.45.
Andrei Kivilev (4th in the Tour last year) is on his way, chasing Santiago Botero (Kelme) who is one of the big favourites for today.
Brad McGee finishes in 1'05.02, a respectable time that is 5th best so far. Not good enough for an eventual top 10 though.
The riders are starting at three minute intervals now.
Francisco Mancebo (iBanesto) is about start.
Lance Armstrong, who starts at 15:49, is warming up with the rest of the Postal camp, as well as Luke and Kristin Armstrong.
Rumsas has caught and passed his two minute man, Cedric Vasseur - it took him just 20 minutes.
Wauters finishes in 1'04.26, a good time and 3rd best behind Bodrogi and Frigo.
David Moncoutie (Cofidis) is about to set off. He doesn't bother with an aero helmet, but contents himself with the cheaper option of a reversed cap.
As predicted earlier, Rumsas is on a mission: He has knocked 27 seconds off Bodrogi's time at 19.5 km.
Menchov is through 35 km in 44'30, 16th quickest behind Bodrogi.
Oscar Sevilla is giving it everything but he will lose a bit of time to the specialists today. He crosses in 1'05.16, 10th fastest.
David Millar (Cofidis) has just started.
Stuart O'Grady finishes in 1'05.58.
Viatcheslav Ekimov (USPS) has just left the starting ramp. What can the Olympic champion do?
Richard Virenque has caught Benoit Joachim before 35 km. But his time of 45'19 is only good enough for 35th so far.
Botero is bettering him: 42'16, another 15 seconds faster than Rumsas. Bodrogi, the early leader, has slipped back to third.
Floyd Landis (USPS) starts. He will be followed by Nicki Sørensen (CSC), Roberto Heras (USPS) and Laurent Jalabert (CSC).
Leipheimer is past 46 km in 57'42, 8th best. Andrei Kivilev passes 35 km in 46'04 - he's already lost 4 minutes to Botero.
Roberto Heras has started at seemingly a training pace. He has a heavily bandaged left leg still, as a result of his collision with Lance Armstrong the other day.
Rumsas goes past 46 km in 55'47, just 5 seconds faster than Bodrogi who had a great finish.
Lance Armstrong has 12 minutes to go until his start, and is still warming up on the home trainer.
Michael Boogerd, who finished just under 1'07.00 was quoted on Dutch TV: "It was tough, I'm nearly dead, went very deep and gave everything I have. I can't go faster. The last 5 km was very bad with the wind. I hope to keep it between the 5 and 5.5 minutes behind the winner."
Rumsas finishes just behind Virenque and Joachim, catching them in the final kilometre. His time is just above Bodrogi's: 1:02:43.75.
Gontchar has knocked two seconds off Botero's time at 19.5 km. But as we've seen, there's a penalty for going out too hard on this course.
Tyler Hamilton (CSC) rolls off the starting ramp.
David Millar has gone through 19.5 km in 25.06, fourth fastest today. His teammate Andrei Kivilev finishes in 1'07.40 - not good enough to win the Tour, but his time will come in the mountains.
Gontchar is past 35 km in 42'18, losing some time to Botero.
Leipheimer's team manager Theo de Rooij: "I think we didn't do too bad. Maybe Leipheimer expected more, but I saw the parcours and it's a little too flat for Levi. He is light, less than 70 kg and then with that wind... Up till now I'm satisfied, of course we have to make the balance later today, but I don't think we have too much damage."
Abraham Olano (ONCE) is on his way. Just three more riders to start.
Ekimov passes 35 km in 43'35, 6th best at that point and a great start.
ONCE's Jorg Jackshe has started - just Beloki and Igor Gonzalez to come.
Armstrong is in his rhythm, pedalling at 110rpm or thereabouts. He gets out of the saddle on one of the early climbs.
Zabel finishes in 1'09.30. 122nd. Moncoutie is better, finishing in 1'06.55
Floyd Landis comes past 35km in 43'56, 10th best. That's a good ride so far by him.
Tyler Hamilton has gone past 19.5 km in 5th place, 34 seconds slower than Gontchar.
Ivan Basso finishes in 1'05.01. He is followed by Millar at 1'03.08, 4th best.
Jalabert is past 35 km in 43'44, 9th fastest.
Jalabert has a flat (we note he is still riding Hamilton's bike, or one similar) and gets a bike change.
Laurent Jalabert is back to full speed again, but he is looking at a top 15 time at best today.
Igor Gonzalez is riding quite smoothly too, but in a much bigger gear than Armstrong.
Landis finishes in 1'04.39, 10th best so far. Beloki is 8th fastest at the first time check.
Jalabert has 2 km to go.
Some of the ONCE riders have Mavic neutral spares cars behind them, as it's impossible for ONCE to have cars behind all of their riders given their start time proximity. But riders like Olano and Nozal won't have the benefits of a director sportif yelling at them, and clearly it shows. Both are between 25th and 40th at the 35 km point.
Armstrong is still five seconds behind Botero (who had a great finish) at 46 km.
Armstrong sprints into the final kilometre. He finishes in 1'02.29. Botero is still the fastest.
This will be the first time trial that Armstrong has lost since he starting winning the Tour in 1999. In the past he has crushed riders like Jan Ullrich by a minute or two. It will make the race in the mountains between ONCE, Kelme and USPS, very interesting.
Nozal looks as through he's blown a gasket, as he finishes in 1'05.47. Obviously the work of the last few days has taken its toll.
Igor is fourth at 17 seconds at km 46.
Olano finishes in 1'05.22.
Beloki is in the final 2 kilometres .
Top four: Botero, Armstrong, Gontchar and Gonzalez de Galdeano. Beloki finished 10th.
The general classification will change, with Igor Gonzalez still holding the top position but Armstrong moving up to second place at 26 seconds.
1 Santiago Botero (Col) Kelme-Costa Blanca 1.02.18 (50.08 km/h) 2 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service 0.11 3 Serguei Gontchar (Ukr) Fassa Bortolo 0.18 4 Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano (Spa) ONCE-Eroski 0.19 5 Laszlo Bodrogi (Hun) Mapei-Quick Step 0.25 6 Raimondas Rumsas (Ltu) Lampre Daikin 7 David Millar (GBr) Cofidis 0.50 8 Dario Frigo (Ita) Tacconi Sport 1.34 9 Andrea Peron (Ita) CSC-Tiscali 10 Joseba Beloki (Spa) ONCE-Eroski 1.38 General classification after stage 9 1 Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano (Spa) ONCE-Eroski 33.21.23 2 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service 0.26 3 Joseba Beloki (Spa) ONCE-Eroski 1.23 4 Serguei Gontchar (Ukr) Fassa Bortolo 1.35 5 Santiago Botero (Col) Kelme-Costa Blanca 1.55 6 Andrea Peron (Ita) CSC-Tiscali 2.08 7 David Millar (GBr) Cofidis 2.11 8 Raimondas Rumsas (Ltu) Lampre Daikin 2.22 9 Tyler Hamilton (USA) CSC-Tiscali 2.30 10 José Azevedo (Por) ONCE-Eroski 2.45