69th Tour de Suisse - PT
Switzerland, June 11-19, 2005
Main Page Results
& report Stage
Stage 6 - June 16: Bürglen UR - Arosa, 158.7 km
Commentary by Jeff Jones, with additional reporting from Anthony Tan
Complete live report
Live coverage starts: 15:00 CEST
Estimated finish: 17:30 CEST
Welcome to Cyclingnews for our live
coverage of the sixth stage of the Tour de Suisse. Today we're heading into
the high mountains, with 159 km between Bürglen UR and Arosa on the menu. There
are only two categorised climbs today, but they're biggies: the hors categorie
Oberalp Pass (2046m) after 44 km, the Cat. 3 climb to Flims (km 103), and the
Cat. 1 climb up to Arosa (1700m), which comes just a couple of kilometres from
Today's intermediate time/bonus sprints are clustered
together: at Domat/Ems (km 120), and between Chur and Maladers (km 129). There's
also a Würth sprint (no bonus seconds) at Chur (km 128).
stage is the next important test for race leader Jan Ullrich, who showed he
has the necessary form in the time trial, but now wants to prove himself in
the mountains. As do his rivals.
15:12 CEST 73.7km/85km to go
The story so far...
146 riders started in Bürglen, with Oscar Freire (Rabobank) and Michael Blaudzun
(Team CSC) not signing on. Freire is still suffering from a saddle sore problem,
and needs time to let it heal properly. He's not doing the Tour.
The first attack came after 8 km with Thorwald Veneberg (Rabobank), Niki Aebersold
(Phonak), Linus Gerdemann (CSC), Matej Mugleri (Liquigas), Markus Zberg (Gerolsteiner),
David Loosli (Lampre), Freddy Bichot (FDJ) and Pablo Lastras (Illes Balears).
They stayed 30 seconds ahead of the T-Mobile led peloton.
(Gerolsteiner) got across, as did Kolobnev (Rabobank), and Elmiger (Phonak),
and there were 17 riders ahead of the peloton after 18 km. Leonardo Bertagnolli
(Cofidis) abandoned after 20 km, followed by Tobias Steinhauser (T-Mobile) and
Cedric Herve (CA). The group came back with T-Mobile still chasing, but Niki
Aebersold (Phonak) und David Loosli tried again after 21 km. Aebersold couldn't
hang on and Loosli was joined by Iban Mayo Diez and Roberto Laiseka (Euskaltel),
Jose Luis Arrieta (Illes Balears), Daniel Atienza (Cofidis), and Daniel Schnider
(Phonak), and this group of six got to the top of the Oberalp Pass with a 2'38
lead over the peloton. Laiseka was first over, followed by Loosli and Arrieta.
On the descent, the gap has opened out to 3'05.
15:15 CEST 76.7km/82km to go
The leaders have
flown on the descent, keeping their gap at 3'00 or so. T-Mobile is controlling
the tempo behind, but groups of riders have already started to go off the back
and form a "sprinters bus".
Juan Carlos Dominguez (Saunier) has
Jesus Hernandez (Liberty Seguros)
had tried to get across to the leaders on the climb, but failed. He's now back
in the peloton.
15:29 CEST 93.7km/65km to go
The gap has steadily
increased up to 3'40 as these six riders fly towards the final climbs of the
day. Daniel Schnider started the day at 15th at 2'17 and is thus the virtual
leader of the Tour de Suisse. Mayo is also well placed at 22nd, 2'54 behind
15:41 CEST 99.7km/59km to go
The gap remains
steady as the front six get close to the Cat. 3 climb at Flims (km 103). The
sprinters bus is now 5 minutes behind the peloton, which is in turn 3'40 behind
15:46 CEST 101.7km/57km to go
The T-Mobile team
has started to turn the screws a bit, and the gap falls to 3'01. Schnider is
still the virtual leader, but by only 44 seconds.
15:49 CEST 104.7km/54km to go
There's a bit of
a sprint for the mountain sprint at Flims, as Loosli and Laiseka take first
and second, with Schnider third. That means Laiseka, who won the HC climb earlier,
is the virtual mountains leader. Ivan Mayo hasn't been at his brilliant best
on the climbs today (he was last over the Overalp Pass) but he is clearly getting
15:53 CEST 108.7km/50km to go
The leaders continue
their effort in front of the peloton, which is now led by Gerolsteiner, T-Mobile,
and Francaise des Jeux. They're sitting on 70 km/h on the way down to Trin.
15:57 CEST 111.7km/47km to go
himself out on a small descent and gets a bit of a gap over the peloton, but
he just uses it to stretch his legs and back. The gap is now under 3 minutes,
2'50 to be exact.
15:59 CEST 112.7km/46km to go
Quick.Step is also
working, with Tom Boonen and Cristian Moreni putting themselves at the service
of Rogers. Eisel is working for Francaise des Jeux, Aldag and Ivanov for T-Mobile,
and Wrolich for Gerolsteiner. It's now 2'30 and falling fast!
The six leaders (David Loosli (Lampre),
Iban Mayo Diez and Roberto Laiseka (Euskaltel), Jose Luis Arrieta (Illes Balears),
Daniel Atienza (Cofidis), and Daniel Schnider (Phonak)) are now just 2'23 ahead
of the flying peloton as they hit 73 km/h on the second half of the descent
It's another beautiful day today - the sun is out, blue
skies, cows in the paddock. It's all good.
16:03 CEST 116.7km/42km to go
Mayo gets a bottle
for Laiseka, who is probably climbing better today. They won't have too much
of a lead once they hit the final climb. Schnider is just about out of the virtual
yellow, as the gap is 2'18.
16:07 CEST 118.7km/40km to go
The leaders pass
the sprint at Domat/Ems with Arrieta and Schnider having a bit of a battle for
it. Looks like Arrieta might have got it. Atienza was third.
is now well out of the virtual yellow now, as the gap is 1'52. How much is a
virtual yellow worth? Probably less than a verbal contract.
16:12 CEST 122.7km/36km to go
The leaders, one
of which (Loosli) who has been away since 8 km, are now on the verge of being
swallowed by the peloton. The gap is 1'20 and it looks like they won't have
much at all before the final climb. Moreni is still working hard, with Ivanov
and Aldag in the peloton.
16:14 CEST 123.7km/35km to go
Mayo looks a bit
knackered as he sits on the back of the break, getting a bit of help from the
Illes Balears car. 1'04 now, as Eisel does another strong turn in the peloton.
Speaking of T-Mobile, Erik Zabel
isn't in their official list for the Tour de France. It looks like it'll be
all for Jan this year (even though Zabel could be fairly handy in the mountains).
16:16 CEST 125.7km/33km to go
The leaders are
still working well together, but Mayo is looking back a lot.
Steinhauser's abandon today was because
of bronchitis. It's a pity for Ullrich, as Steinhauser is his good friend and
he also happens to have the same bike size.
16:19 CEST 127.7km/31km to go
The leaders ride
through Chur, turning left and right, then come up to the Würth sprint, which
is taken by Schnider from Arrieta and Mayo. They only have 38 seconds on the
16:21 CEST 128.7km/30km to go
The road starts
to climb and Schnider puts the power down, not enough to drop anyone, but enough
to make them hurt. It won't matter, as the bunch is coming up fast. They hit
another sprint, this one for bonus seconds, and Mayo sits up. He's had enough
for the day.
Schnider leads out and takes the sprint from Laiseka
The climb starts immediately, with
some light cobbles and a narrow road. The five remaining leaders have just 22
seconds. Schnider opts for the footpath as he goes with Arrieta. The other three
16:23 CEST 129.7km/29km to go
The average grade
of the climb is only 4.1%, but it's for 26.7 km! The steepest part is 14.6%,
and even now it's fairly steep at 10%.
Jan himself is leading the
peloton at 18 seconds. 17. 16.
Arrieta is alone in front. 15 seconds.
Atienza claws his way back to Arrieta
on this very steep part of the Arosa climb. Schnider, Loosli, and Laiseka are
following at 5 seconds, then the bunch at another 12.
Glomser (Lampre) attacks the peloton
in pursuit of the five leaders. He wasn't looking too good yesterday, but might
be better today. Voigt comes up to him, then the peloton, led by Guerini and
16:27 CEST 130.7km/28km to go
Plenty of riders
are being shelled out of the peloton now, as it heads through a few tunnels.
It looks like Laiseka and co. are coming back, while Arrieta and Atienza still
have 15 seconds.
Glomser and Voigt are caught.
16:28 CEST 130.7km/28km to go
Chris Horner (Saunier)
attacks next, with Voigt chasing him down and the rest of the peloton thinning
out in pursuit. The gap to Atienza, who has now passed Arrieta, is 19 seconds.
Laiseka and Schnider are caught.
16:30 CEST 131.7km/27km to go
Horner gets company
from Gonzalez Rios (Illes Balears), with Vincenzo Nibali (Fassa Bortolo) trying
to get up to them. They trail Atienza by about 10 seconds.
Now we have four leaders: Daniel
Atienza (Cofidis), Chris Horner (Saunier Duval), Gonzalez Rios (Illes Balears),
and Vincenzo Nibali (Fassa Bortolo). There's still 27 km to go though. The peloton
is at 24 seconds.
16:32 CEST 132.7km/26km to go
Ullrich and Guerini
are riding at the front of the peloton, just behind a Phonak rider.
Atienza is dropped as Nibali forces the tempo in front. It's quite steep here.
Yep, Atienza is gone.
16:34 CEST 132.7km/26km to go
The peloton is
now about 25 riders strong, with Ullrich and Guerini following the Phonak rider.
Rogers and McGee are up there too. McGee was only 2 seconds behind Ullrich at
the start of the day, so he might try to get that back today. If he can.
16:35 CEST 133.7km/25km to go
Horner now does
a turn in the front group, which has 26 seconds. They're working well together.
Gussev (CSC) is suffering, and has been shelled from the peloton.
Koldo Gil and Jesus Hernandez (Liberty
Seguros) are bringing up the rear of the Ullrich group, which is not doing much
except losing time to the leaders. It's 35 seconds now.
16:37 CEST 134.7km/24km to go
the leaders! That's early, but he's obviously feeling good. He's got a really
laid back position on the bike, but he's using his long thighs to good advantage
on this climb. Horner and Gonzalez Rios can't follow the Italian.
Nibali now has 48 seconds as he powers
away at 28 km/h. He reaches a tunnel - now 50 seconds! The Ullrich group had
better wake up.
16:42 CEST 136.7km/22km to go
Some names in the
Ullrich group: Ullrich, Guerini, Rogers, McGee, B. Zberg, Valjavec, Moos, Schnider,
Voigt, Schleck, Kirchen, Frigo, Jeker, Piepoli, Evans, Totschnig, Atienza, Bellotti,
Perez, Barry, Sinkewitz, Montgomery, Loosli, Arrieta, Osa, I Flores, Aitor Gonzalez,
Horner and Gonzalez Rios are 13 seconds behind Nibali,
while the yellow jersey sits at 1'07!
Nibali started the day at 3'17, so
if he continues like this, he'll get close to yellow.
Gonzalez Rios have pegged the Italian back to 7 seconds on a flatter part of
the climb. Peloton at 1'14.
16:44 CEST 137.7km/21km to go
(Quick.Step) attacks! He's had enough of this tempo, but he's coming back now.
The group stretches...
Gussev is making his way back as
Rogers is caught. Guerini is now on the front.
16:45 CEST 138.7km/20km to go
Guerini looks reasonably
comfy as he sets the pace with Ullrich and McGee in tow.
increased his lead to 9 seconds and 1'20 over the Ullrich group. Nice riding
by the young Italian.
16:46 CEST 138.7km/20km to go
Nibali is using
his time trialling skills to great effect, and hammers on a flat section of
the climb, putting Ullrich's group back to 1'40! He's halfway to the yellow
16:48 CEST 139.7km/19km to go
Guerini is looking
for a bit of help in the peloton, but he has Kirchen on his wheel now, who obviously
won't work with Nibali up the road.
Rabobank's Niermann attacks now.
Horner has closed the gap to Nibali. Gonzalez Rios is at 10 seconds.
16:49 CEST 140.7km/18km to go
All hell is breaking
loose in the peloton now as Niermann, Kirchen, Voigt, and a Phonak rider get
a bit of a gap. It's not too steep here. The two leaders are up to 1'56!
Guerini is back on the front of the
peloton, reducing the gap to 1'49. Gussev is hanging onto last wheel.
16:52 CEST 141.7km/17km to go
Voigt and Elmiger
attack the bunch now, and get a decent sized gap. But Elmiger doesn't want to
16:53 CEST 142.7km/16km to go
Voigt and Elmiger
make good their escape, with the German doing most of the work. They have the
gap at 1'42 now to Nibali and Horner. Gonzalez Rios is still in between.
16:54 CEST 143.7km/15km to go
to drive as the road undulates a bit. They are at 1'39 behind the two leaders.
No sign of the rest of the peloton now.
16:56 CEST 144.7km/14km to go
between Horner and Nibali is good, as they have Voigt/Elmiger at 1'38 and the
Ullrich bunch at 1'55. That could be enough to stay away.
Gonzalez Rios is not losing too much
time though - he's third on the road at about 20 seconds.
16:59 CEST 146.7km/12km to go
The leading pair
are now 20 seconds ahead of Gonzalez Rios, 1'39 ahead of Voigt/Elmiger, and
2'01 ahead of the Guerini led peloton, where Valjavec, McGee, and Evans are
holding the next three positions. Ullrich is a bit further back, and Guerini
looks back for him.
17:00 CEST 147.7km/11km to go
Ullrich is sitting
in about 10th wheel, just behind Rogers. Guerini keeps working, but he's losing
time. 2'11 now. Another minute and Nibali will be in yellow. It's possible!
Actually, Horner will be in yellow,
as he started 8 seconds ahead of Nibali on GC (at 3'09).
17:02 CEST 148.7km/10km to go
But they need to
get that extra minute first :-)
Voigt is getting no help from Elmiger
as he hangs 30 seconds in front of the peloton but 1'43 behind the two leaders
(three if you count Gonzalez Rios).
17:04 CEST 149.7km/9km to go
Guerini is doing
all the work in the peloton, and it's just enough to stop the gap from going
up too much. The climb will get steeper towards the end, but now it's still
Gonzalez Rios is 1'01 behind the two leaders.
17:04 CEST 150.7km/8km to go
wildly. He wants Nibali to do a bit more work. The two reach 8 km to go.
Horner attacks as Nibali cramps a
bit. The American is alone now.
17:05 CEST 150.7km/8km to go
Nibali is history.
Horner should win the stage! He'll move himself up nicely on GC too, but the
yellow will probably be out of reach.
17:07 CEST 151.7km/7km to go
to go for Horner, who is en route to a big win. Nibali is not coming back, Gonzalez
Rios is still at 1'01, Voigt and Elmiger are at 1'26, and the peloton is dangling
at 2'09, with Nardello and Schreck leading now. Jeez, where did they come from?
17:09 CEST 152.7km/6km to go
The peloton has
three magenta jerseys working in front, with Ullrich back in 10th or 12th wheel.
But they're not going to get Chris Horner, who still has 2'06 over the peloton
and 1'37 on Voigt/Elmiger with 6 km to go. Now it gets hard.
17:11 CEST 153.7km/5km to go
The bunch is losing
time as it hits the final part of the climb with 5 km to go. The gap is still
2'09 and the peloton figuratively explodes.
Elmiger and Voigt are
catching Gonzalez Rios, but Horner rides 1'40 in front.
Elmiger now does a turn, and drops
Voigt as he catches Gonzalez Rios. But they are only 20 seconds ahead of Ullrich's
17:13 CEST 154.7km/4km to go
Gil attacks the
peloton, with Jeker in pursuit. They catch Voigt, and will catch the other two
Jeker forces the tempo with Rogers leading the bunch. Ullrich
is up there though.
Horner has 2'00 on the peloton.
17:15 CEST 155.2km/3.5km to go
Horner is still
pedalling well, but losing time now as the Ullrich group cranks it up. The American
has about 4 km to go and 1'42 lead. No sign of Nibali - not sure if he's recovered
from his cramps.
Gil attacks the Ullrich group again, and gets Piepoli
for company. He shouldn't work, with Horner up the road.
17:16 CEST 155.7km/3km to go
Aitor Gonzalez is
the next to attack, trying to get up to Piepoli and Gil. He does. Ullrich hasn't
done a hell of a lot yet, except follow. Jeker and Rogers lead him.
17:18 CEST 155.7km/3km to go
Horner has a good
1'30 on Nibali, who is not going to catch him now. 1'45 back is the group with
Gil, Aitor, and Piepoli, then the Ullrich group at another 10 seconds.
Jeker attacks the Ullrich group now
and Rogers and Schleck follow, but Ullrich has to let the gap go! And McGee
17:20 CEST 157.7km/1km to go
Piepoli looks back
and sees Jeker coming up to them, as Gil and Aitor Gonzalez keep working. Jeker
has Schleck, Rogers, and Valjavec with him. Rogers in yellow? Could happen.
No, here's Ullrich, McGee and Sinkewitz just a few seconds behind.
Horner has just 1 km to go and has
a comfy lead over Nibali. The Saunier Duval man will win the stage! Great riding!
17:22 CEST 158.7km/0km to go
Horner rides down
the finish straight, looks back, and sees that he has a good gap. He rests his
arms on the tops to get the most out of his position, checking several times
to see if Nibali has come back, but the Italian hasn't, and Horner can celebrate
a great stage win! Maybe he's booked his Tour ticket today!
Ullrich has cranked it up and Sinkewitz
and McGee are back on his wheel. He'll lose yellow.
in at 1'11, then Rogers third right behind. Ullrich's group comes in at 1'47
and it's Michael Rogers who takes yellow!
That's official now: Rogers has the
overall lead by 20 seconds, with McGee in third at 22 seconds. And Horner has
a very nice stage win.
That's all from us today - we'll be back at
the same CN-time tomorrow for stage 7. Until then.
1 Chris Horner (USA) Saunier Duval-Prodir 4.24.43
2 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 1.12
3 Michael Rogers (Aus) Quick Step 1.14
4 Frank Schleck (Lux) Team CSC
5 Koldo Gil Perez (Spa) Liberty Seguros-Würth Team
6 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) Phonak Hearing Systems
7 Leonardo Piepoli (Ita) Saunier Duval-Prodir
8 Aitor Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
9 Fabian Jeker (Swi) Saunier Duval-Prodir
10 Jan Ullrich (Ger) T-Mobile Team 1.48
11 Bradley McGee (Aus) Française Des Jeux
12 Patrick Sinkewitz (Ger) Quick Step
13 Kim Kirchen (Lux) Fassa Bortolo
General classification after stage 6
1 Michael Rogers (Aus) Quick Step 21.28.40
2 Jan Ullrich (Ger) T-Mobile Team 0.20
3 Bradley McGee (Aus) Française Des Jeux 0.22
4 Fabian Jeker (Swi) Saunier Duval-Prodir 1.11
5 Frank Schleck (Lux) Team CSC 1.27
6 Chris Horner (USA) Saunier Duval-Prodir 1.31
7 Aitor Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi 1.38
8 Tadej Valjavec (Slo) Phonak Hearing Systems 1.39
9 Koldo Gil Perez (Spa) Liberty Seguros-Würth Team 1.42
10 Beat Zberg (Swi) Gerolsteiner 1.57
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