92nd Tour de France - GT
France, July 2-24, 2005
Results & report
Stage 12 - Thursday, July 14: Briançon - Digne-les-Bains, 187 km
Commentary by Jeff Jones, with additional reporting from Anthony Tan and
Live coverage starts: 11:50 CEST
Estimated finish: 16:30 CEST
Stage 12 profile
Welcome back to Sunny France for
Cyclingnews' live coverage of the 12th stage of Le Tour. Today we're starting
in Sunny Briançon in the Alps, and will pilot the CN blimp in a southerly direction
via the Route Napoléon until we reach Digne-les-Bains after 187 km. Along the
way we hope to spot some riders.
Today's stage happens to be on July
14, or Quatorze Juillet, France's national holiday. So we can expect
a few fireworks from the French riders, who will try to outdo each other to
win, thereby allowing a Spaniard to seize the opportunity, capitalising on any
intra-French rivalry, and attacking alone to take a glorious victory in Digne-les-Bains
(even though Laurent Jalabert proved that theory wrong anyway).
rider who won't be going for the win today is Tom Boonen (Quick.Step). The green
jersey won't start today's stage as a result of injuries sustained in a crash
on the descent from Courchevel yesterday. That means Thor Hushovd is the new
leader of the green jersey competition.
Former maillot jaune Jens
Voigt (CSC) and Kevin Hulsmans (Quick.Step) are also non starters, after they
were eliminated on time yesterday.
The intermediate sprints today
are quite early in the piece, at La Roche-De-Rame (km 17.5) and Embrun (km 44.5),
so we can expect Credit Agricole and maybe Davitamon-Lotto to keep things together
so that Thor and Robbie can go for more points, while Stuart O'Grady will be
looking at getting into a break to mop up the points.
Côte des Demoiselles-coiffées (Cat. 3, 61km, 1067m, 4.6km at
Col Saint-Jean (Cat. 2, 88km, 1332m, 13.2km at 4%)
Col de Labouret
(Cat. 4, 115.5km, 1240m, 2.2km climb at 3.2%)
Col du Corobin (Cat. 2, 156km,
1230m, 12.4km, 4.5%)
Col de l'Orme (Cat. 4, 177km, 734m, 2.7km at 3.9%)
12:01 CEST 2km/185km to go
The stage started
with a 3.4 km neutral section before the flag was dropped at 11:57. Stéphane
Augé (Cofidis) attacked immediately.
12:07 CEST 6km/181km to go
Augé's attack didn't
last long, and Erik Dekker (Rabobank) is the next to try. The wily Dutchman
came back after 5 km.
12:13 CEST 12km/175km to go
Brad McGee (FDJ)
is on the move, and has a 20 second lead over the bunch after 12 km. His Tour
plans have been shot to pieces over the last few days as he is nearly an hour
down on the general classification. So obviously he wants to try for a stage
12:22 CEST 19km/168km to go
Brad McGee is caught
after km 18.5. The Australian rider did take the sprint points at La Roche-De-Rame
ahead of compatriot Robbie McEwen (Davitamon-Lotto) and de facto green jersey
wearer Thor Hushovd (C.A).
Although Hushovd is generally a slower
sprinter than McEwen, he still has a fairly big lead in the green competition.
The Norwegian has 130 points, ahead of O'Grady on 109 points and McEwen on 100.
McEwen's relegation in the first week has cost him dearly for this classification,
which he has a love-hate relationship with.
12:28 CEST 25km/162km to go
The bunch is staying
together for the time being, despite several more attempts by riders to break
away. It has been a quick start, with around 25 km covered in the first half
12:32 CEST 28km/159km to go
The next attack comes
from Thomas Voeckler (Bouygues), Vlad Karpets (Illes Balears) and Kurt-Asle
Arvesen (CSC). It goes nowhere.
12:42 CEST 36km/151km to go
The next sprint is
coming up in 8 km in Embrun, and it's looking like the sprinters' teams are
keeping the peloton together until then. The pace is still very fast.
12:49 CEST 40km/147km to go
(T-Mobile), Alberto Contador (Liberty) and Juan Antonio Flecha (Fassa Bortolo)
are trying to break the rhythm of the sprinters teams and have a small gap after
40 km, with just 4 km to go to the next sprint.
12:50 CEST 44km/143km to go
The lead group is
now: Giuseppe Guerini (T-Mobile Team), Christophe Brandt (Davitamon-Lotto),
Juan Antonio Flecha (Fassa Bortolo), Alberto Contador (Liberty Seguros-Würth),
Sylvain Chavanel (Cofidis, Le Credit Par Telephone), Patrik Sinkewitz (Quick.Step),
Laurent Lefèvre and Thomas Voeckler (Bouygues Telecom), and Sandy Casar (Française
Des Jeux). It has 18 seconds.
12:52 CEST 45km/142km to go
The nine attacked
after 37 km, and despite the efforts of Liquigas to bring them back, it was
to no avail and they passed the sprint in Embrun with a 25 second gap to the
12:55 CEST 48km/139km to go
The results of the
sprint in Embrun: 1. Sylvain Chavanel (Cofidis), 2. Contador (Liberty Seguros),
3. Laurent Lefevre (Bouygues Telecom). That's not going to affect the green
jersey competition much.
12:57 CEST 51km/136km to go
Guerini is the best
placed rider in this break of nine, starting the day in 24th at 12'19 from Armstrong.
Therefore, it may be allowed to go. The latest gap: 39 seconds.
13:03 CEST 53km/134km to go
The nine man break
is working hard to stay clear as it rides past the beautifully scenic Lac de
Serre-Poncon, pursued hard by the Liquigas team.
The riders covered
50.5 km in the first hour.
13:08 CEST 58km/129km to go
The break has been
caught now after 58 km, as they start the Côte des Demoiselles-coiffées. Several
riders counter attack - is that Flecha again?
It is Flecha with Sandy Casar on
his wheel, riding hard up this Cat. 3 climb.
13:10 CEST 59km/128km to go
Nicolas Fritsch (Saunier
Duval) climbs off his bike and abandons, his number being pulled off by an official.
Flecha and Casar are caught by the
Discovery led peloton, where Egoi Martinez counter attacks.
13:12 CEST 60km/127km to go
Manuel Beltran (Discovery
Channel) has crashed. He gets up, gingerly, and gets on his bike again.
Martinez is joined by Michael Boogerd, about 10 seconds ahead of the peloton.
Beltran is helped by the Discovery
Channel car, but is hurting fairly badly.
Up front, Fedrigo has caught
the two leaders, along with Garzelli and McGee. They near the top of the climb.
13:15 CEST 61km/126km to go
Boogerd drives to
the top of the climb, trying to keep this break going. He gets the points ahead
of Fedrigo, Garzelli, and Martinez. McGee is next over, then the peloton comes
up in bits.
Beltran is being seen to by the race doctor.
13:18 CEST 63km/124km to go
Beltran is back with
the Discovery car, which is trying to give him mechanical assistance. His radio
is dangling below his seat.
(Les Demoiselles-coiffées are a spectacular
rock formation. Very sharp)
The break is caught now.
13:19 CEST 65km/122km to go
Seb Joly lifts the
pace a bit, but it's hard to get a gap.
Meanwhile, at the back of
the peloton, the injured Manuel Beltran is trying to chase on. No teammates
to help him though.
13:22 CEST 67km/120km to go
Beltran gets a bidon
of water and tips half of it over his head. He's not coming back to the peloton
any time soon. He's now being looked after by the medical van.
front, the peloton is racing hard through Le Sauze-du-Lac, before plunging back
down to the beautiful turquoise coloured Lac de Serre-Poncon.
Garate and Vicioso open up a small
gap on the descent.
Beltran has another chat to the medi-van,
and looks to be getting Nicolas Jalabert (Phonak) for company. The pair are
several minutes behind the peloton though.
13:27 CEST 72km/115km to go
Garate and Vicioso
have company. Pellizotti, Casar, Arrieta, Halgand, Steinhauser, Moncoutié are
there, with the peloton now at 38 seconds.
13:27 CEST 72km/115km to go
Garate and Vicioso
have company. Pellizotti, Casar, Arrieta, Halgand, Schreck, Giunti, and Moncoutié
are there, with the peloton now at 38 seconds. O'Grady and Hushovd are chasing
13:32 CEST 75km/112km to go
The lead group: Stephan
Schreck (T-Mobile Team), Giovanni Lombardi (Team CSC), José Luis Arrieta (Illes
Balears-Caisse d'Epargne), Axel Merckx (Davitamon-Lotto), Massimo Giunti (Fassa
Bortolo), Juan Manuel Garate (Saunier Duval-Prodir), Angel Vicioso (Liberty
Seguros-Würth), Patrice Halgand (Credit Agricole), Franco Pellizotti (Liquigas-Bianchi),
David Moncoutié (Cofidis, Le Credit Par Telephone), Sandy Casar (Française Des
Jeux). Casar is the best placed on GC, at 17'29 in 31st.
at 25 seconds: Thor Hushovd (Credit Agricole), Stuart O'Grady (Cofidis).
The peloton is now at 1'40.
13:35 CEST 78km/109km to go
O'Grady and Hushovd
are chasing hard to try to catch the 11 breakaways - now at 16 seconds as they
start to climb again. The peloton is at 2'00, perhaps waiting for Beltran and
13:38 CEST 79km/108km to go
Hushovd and O'Grady
are now on the back of the break after a hard chase. They had two teammates
up there, who would have tried to slow thing down in front.
are now on the Cat. 2 Col Saint-Jean, a 13.2km climb at 4%.
13:42 CEST 81km/106km to go
Iban Mayo has dropped
off the back of the peloton, and is doing water carrying duties now. Klöden
is there too. They are climbing up above the lake again, and Discovery is setting
a pretty steady tempo. Armstrong looks quite chirpy today, as he should.
The 13 man break is now 3'25 ahead
of the peloton, and could go all the way today. There are 11 teams represented
up front, and not much incentive to chase.
Lots of action happening
at the rear of the peloton.
Beltran has abandoned as a result
of his crash earlier. That's a rare DNF for the Discovery team, which has had
an incredible record of nearly always finishing all nine riders in Paris.
13:50 CEST 85km/102km to go
The front group has
some interesting names in it, even though they're not dangerous for the GC.
Riders like Thor Hushovd, Stuart O'Grady, Angel Vicioso, and Axel Merckx are
all specialists at winning races from medium sized breakaways like this. Garate,
Halgand, and Moncoutié are all pretty handy too, especially on the climbs.
Benjamin Noval has now assumed the position on the front of the bunch.
13:58 CEST 88km/99km to go
Unai Etxebarria (Euskaltel)
is getting attention from the race doctor now, but he's back with the peloton.
Garate rides ahead of the break to take the points on the Col Saint-Jean ahead
of Casar and O'Grady.
DNF = Did
GC = general classification
Bidon = water bottle
14:01 CEST 91km/96km to go
Patrik Sinkewitz (Quick.Step)
is now getting attention from the race doctor on his left knee, which is bleeding
The gap to the break is up to 3'41.
If this break goes all the way to
the finish, then it could snuff out any remaining ambitions of Robbie McEwen
and the green jersey, because O'Grady and Hushovd are in the break. McEwen is
at the back of the bunch, chatting to Luis Sanchez, who he would know from the
Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under.
14:07 CEST 97km/90km to go
Musettes = feed bags
Newspapers = for keeping warm on the descents once
stuffed down the front of the jersey
Speaking of musettes, the leaders
are in the feedzone at Selonnet now with 4'10 on the peloton.
The average speed in the second hour
was 37.3 km/h, which puts the average after two hours at 43.9 km/h.
14:15 CEST 101km/86km to go
O'Grady does a strong
turn in the break to keep the pace up, as the gap is now 4'43. He wants to ensure
that it stays away to the finish so he can challenge for the stage win (most
of all) and maybe the green, although Hushovd has a 21 point advantage there.
According to Belgian TV, quoting
Discovery team leader Johan Bruyneel, Beltran apparently fell on his head and
blacked out. He wasn't allowed to continue by the race doctor.
14:19 CEST 103km/84km to go
In the break, Axel
Merckx is not going to be happy, as Davitamon-Lotto have now started to chase
the breakaway. That means McEwen is interested in the green again, so he wants
to bring Hushovd and O'Grady back.
The peloton strings out through
14:23 CEST 106km/81km to go
Aerts, Vansevenant, and Brandt doing the chasing in the peloton, as the 13 riders
lose about 20 seconds of their lead. But in front, Merckx is still rolling through.
He might be told to stop doing that soon.
Furlan is suffering off the back
of the peloton. He has had a pretty tough Tour.
14:25 CEST 107km/80km to go
Casar has attacked
the break, maybe trying to up the tempo a bit and maybe get rid of O'Grady and
14:29 CEST 109km/78km to go
Casar keeps looking
back, seeing if he can get a few riders for company, but it looks like the whole
break is chasing him. The peloton is at 4'07, slowly getting closer.
Casar is caught.
McEwen is now getting some mechanical attention,
with the Davitamon-Lotto team mechanic.
Furlan abandons, looking
a little down. But there's nothing you can do when the tank is empty. The official
rips his numbers off.
14:35 CEST 115km/72km to go
The leaders are now
on the third climb of the day, the Col de Labouret (Cat. 4, 2.2km climb at 3.2%).
Davitamon-Lotto have knocked 30 seconds
off the lead of the break, but no more than that. It's still 4'10 as the 13
leaders near the top of the climb.
14:37 CEST 116km/71km to go
Garate, Merckx, and
Arrieta take the points for on the Labouret in that order, and the break is
now flying on the descent.
Jan Ullrich stops for a bit and gets
going again in the 53x12, it looks like. Why? Because he can.
14:45 CEST 120km/67km to go
The peloton crosses
the top of the Labouret, still led by the Four Davitamon-Lottos of the Apocalypse,
In front, O'Grady does another big turn. They're riding
through a densely wooded national park now, and there aren't two many people
out in this particular part of the world.
14:49 CEST 127km/60km to go
Mathieu Sprick (Bouygues
Telecom) is sporting some ripped shorts as a result of a crash. Also, Alejandro
Valverde is having problems with his knee.
14:55 CEST 132km/55km to go
The break is cooperating
well, knowing that the chase is pretty determined behind them. The gap is coming
down a little, and is just under 4'00.
They're riding through the
Reserve Geologique De Haute-Provence.
Hushovd isn't actually wearing the
green jersey today, perhaps because Boonen announced only just before the start
that he wasn't going on. Contrast that to Lance Armstrong not wanting to wear
the yellow the day after Zabriskie crashed. The Tour organisers made him wear
it, although he didn't appear at the start in it.
Our Behind the Blue Curtain reporter
Chris Brewer checks in from the finish: "The final category 2 climb is really
going to get the peloton's
attention. Starting rather sedately with the
'12.5 km Sommet' banner, the rode kicks up in twisty little curves for about
2km but nothing terrible. Then it goes downhill into a very non-Cat 2 little
town and the riders will be thinking 'How bad could this be?' They soon find
out as they exit the town and there is a vicious right-left switchback and a
wall of road ahead of them for at least 2 kms before it flattens out a bit.
The riders get a little respite but then it kicks back up soon enough to the
summit. Add in that it is very hot on the climb and this effort should decimate
whatever is left on the front of the race and decide who will contend for the
stage win - or gain/lose time on GC.
"After the summit it's a narrow
twisting descent to the much nicer roads
of the N85, and the Cat 4 climb
is barely a lump in the road compared to
the previous effort. The final
4kms to the line are a descent leading
to a 2 km flat run-in to Digne-les-Bains.
The only technical section is
a sketchy roundabout just before the 1km
kite, but then it's a straight
shot to the finish."
15:03 CEST 138km/49km to go
In the chasing peloton,
Vansummeren is a bit stuffed. I think that's the end of the Davitamon-Lotto
push for the green jersey. The pace eases in the peloton. 4'11.
15:09 CEST 142km/45km to go
The 13 leaders are
now 45 km away from the finish in Digne-les-Bains (they've just ridden through
it the first time) and now have a pretty comfy 4'23 lead. Davitamon-Lotto is
still on the front of the peloton, but not riding quite as hard. Armstrong's
team is next placed, with McEwen also up there.
15:12 CEST 144km/43km to go
The break starts
the climb of the Col du Corobin, a Cat. 2 ascent measuring 12.4km at 4.5% average
The peloton is riding through Digne-les-Bains for the first
Robert Hunter (Phonak) is out of
the race, having abandoned earlier in the stage.
A quick weather report: it's sunny
and warm, with temps in the mid to high 20's.
15:20 CEST 148km/39km to go
David Moncoutié has
a little dabble off the front of the break on the climb, but nothing doing.
The French are a bit outnumbered in the break on Quatorze Juillet, only
making up three of the 13 leaders.
Watch Lombardi too - he's good at
winning from a small break.
15:21 CEST 149km/38km to go
Merckx attacks, hard!
He gets Halgand and Vicioso for company, then Garate closes the gap. O'Grady
and Hushovd are gapped, but O'Grady manages to get back onto the back of the
15:22 CEST 150km/37km to go
Nope - O'Grady and
Hushovd are both dropped as the climbers light it up on the Col du Corobin.
Merckx now checks behind him as Moncoutié counters.
David Moncoutié, who won on the 15th
of July stage last year, has got a 10 second gap on the rest of the break as
he powers out of a hairpin in a solid gear. This is a tougher part of the climb.
Vicioso, Lombardi, O'Grady, and Hushovd are all gapped form the rest.
15:25 CEST 151km/36km to go
David Moncoutié is
now being chased by the remnants of the break, which has José Luis Arrieta (Illes
Balears-Caisse d'Epargne), Axel Merckx (Davitamon-Lotto), Massimo Giunti (Fassa
Bortolo), Juan Manuel Garate (Saunier Duval-Prodir), Patrice Halgand (Credit
Agricole), Franco Pellizotti (Liquigas-Bianchi), Sandy Casar (Française Des
Jeux) and Angel Vicioso (Liberty) in it.
Moncoutié has 20 seconds. The next
two behind the break are Giovanni Lombardi (Team CSC), and Stuart O'Grady (Cofidis),
then a gap to Stephan Schreck (T-Mobile Team), then another gap to Thor Hushovd
We can forget about the peloton's
chances today. It's Discovery who got back on the front as the climb started,
and the gap to the leader is now 5'16.
Merckx is doing most of the
chasing work behind Moncoutié. O'Grady and Lombardi are doing their best to
get back on.
15:29 CEST 151km/36km to go
Hushovd is 13th on
the road at the moment, getting some encouragement from his team car.
Moncoutié is 5 km from the summit and has 25 seconds on the Merckx group, which
is losing Vicioso, and 40 seconds on O'Grady and Lombardi.
15:31 CEST 152km/35km to go
Pellizotti and Giunti
are also dropped from the break, but Pellizotti gets back on as the climb flattens
out for a bit and even goes downhill.
15:35 CEST 155km/32km to go
Moncoutié now has
half a minute on the first group of chasers, where Merckx is doing a lot of
work and where Vicioso, Pellizotti and Giunti have got back on.
and Lombardi are another half a minute back, then Hushovd with Schreck at 1'30.
The peloton is at 6'14.
Pellizotti and Giunti are dropped
again as the road goes up for the last 2 km of this climb. Vicioso tries to
15:38 CEST 156km/31km to go
The leader, David
Moncoutié (Cofidis) is driving towards the summit, getting cheered on by the
French fans as he tries for a Quatorze Juillet victory. He has 40 seconds.
15:40 CEST 157km/30km to go
Moncoutié is now
at the top, taking the maximum points of course.
Garate leads the
next group over at 36 seconds, with Merckx, Arrieta, Casar, Halgand, and Vicioso
the others in that group, crossing in that order.
15:42 CEST 157km/30km to go
The descent of the
Col du Corobin is narrow and technical, and Moncoutié is doing his best to hold
off the chasers. He has 38 seconds. Pellizotti is at about a minute, then Giunti
at 1'34, then O'Grady, Schreck and Lombardi at 2'05, and Hushovd at 2'15.
Merckx leads the chase on the descent,
gapping the others a bit.
Hushovd is now with O'Grady's group.
There are places on this descent
where the tarmac is already very hot, melting, and sticky... They've put people
up there with yellow flags to signal the riders where the dangerous places are.
The peloton is now at the top of
the climb, 7'42 behind the break.
Moncoutié is navigating the descent
well, holding 50 seconds on Merckx's group. The O'Grady/Hushovd group is at
15:49 CEST 166km/21km to go
Merckx is off the
front of the chase group, which has regained Pellizotti. But Merckx knows he
can't close the gap on his own and waits.
15:51 CEST 167km/20km to go
The seven man chase
group is now 22 seconds behind Moncoutié, who goes under 20 km to go.
15:52 CEST 168km/19km to go
The chasers are asking
for food/water, even though they're in the final 20 km and feeding isn't usually
allowed from the team cars.
Further back, Hushovd gets some refreshment
from his team car.
15:54 CEST 170km/17km to go
to drive the pace on his won, as the chase group is disorganised. Halgand doesn't
want to work because Hushovd is behind.
The first chase group is
at 25 seconds, then the Hushovd/O'Grady group, which has caught Giunti and also
has Lombardi and Schreck in it, is at 2'05.
Heras has a flat in the
peloton. A teammate waits for him.
Moncoutié knows he's got a good chance
because the group behind is arguing about who should work. Halgand won't, that's
clear. The group is at 0'28.
15:56 CEST 172km/15km to go
Halgand is working
now, and that might make a difference as they race under rock formations towards
Digne-les-Bains. But Moncoutié has 32 seconds!
15:58 CEST 173km/14km to go
Under 15 km to go,
the chase group comes through exactly half a minute behind David Moncoutié.
There's also one more climb today, the Cat. 4 Col de l'Orme, 2.7km at 3.9%.
16:00 CEST 174km/13km to go
Moncoutié is fighting
hard for every second, and now has 33 of them. The Hushovd/O'Grady group is
at 2'20, while the peloton is at 8'36!
16:04 CEST 176km/11km to go
Merckx is doing a
huge amount of work in the chase, but the others aren't really contributing
enough. It's not over yet as Moncoutié starts the Col de l'Orme.
Garate attacks, with Halgand and Merckx and the rest coming back.
16:05 CEST 177km/10km to go
The cooperation is
gone and Moncoutié now has 36 seconds. He's hurting as Vicioso puts in a counter
attack behind. That's fairly enterprising. Merckx closes the gap fairly comfortably.
Arrieta is in trouble.
16:07 CEST 178km/9km to go
Merckx attacks as
Moncoutié reaches the top. The gap is 28 seconds as Garate takes second place
ahead of Merckx.
Hushovd's group is now at 2'45, and the peloton
over 9 minutes back. Casar will move up a bit on GC today.
16:09 CEST 179km/8km to go
David Moncoutié is
strong today on Quatorze Juillet and has 37 seconds on the seven chasers.
They're not going to get him now.
16:10 CEST 180km/7km to go
Merckx urges the others
to work in pursuit, but they're not interested. Now Vicioso and Casar try to
attack, but the others come back, gradually.
16:10 CEST 181km/6km to go
Pellizotti and Arrieta
are pretty knackered, and just want to get to the finish. Not much more is going
to come from their legs today.
16:12 CEST 183km/4km to go
Moncoutié has 29 seconds
with just under 4 km to go to the finish. He'll win the stage, and become the
first French rider to do so in this year's Tour.
16:13 CEST 184km/3km to go
It's slightly downhill
now and the chasers are closing the gap a bit, but 27 seconds is too much.
16:14 CEST 184km/3km to go
Moncoutié flies under
3 km to go as Merckx puts in another little attack that goes nowhere.
16:15 CEST 185km/2km to go
2 clicks to go for
David Moncoutié, who is on track for another Tour stage win. He won almost exactly
one year ago.
The chasing group is sorting out
who will be second today. Merckx is the strongest, but can't sprint. Vicioso
might get it.
16:16 CEST 186km/1km to go
Moncoutié is under
the 1 km to go banner as he is cheered on by the big crowds at the finish. He
takes the tricky corner and is in the straight, still with 31 seconds.
16:17 CEST 187km/0km to go
David Moncoutié (Cofidis)
rides up to the finish line in Digne-les-Bains at full gas, looking back, then
celebrating his win with 100 metres to go. Excellent ride by the French climber!!
He's delighted with it.
The sprint for second is like a track
sprint, as they all slow down to 20km/h. Then Arrieta jumps and nearly gets
it but it's Casar and Vicioso in second and third.
Schreck leads out the sprint for
9th place with Lombardi, O'Grady, and Hushovd in tow. But he goes from too far
and sits up at 700m. Then Lombardi gets to the front and slowly leads out with
O'Grady ready to jump. The Australian goes with Hushovd on his wheel, but the
Norwegian gets it and takes more green points. O'Grady 10th.
The peloton is sprinting for a few
points as a Cofidis rider - Marichal - tries to break the rhythm of the Davitamon-Lotto
train in the final kilometres. But no luck, and it's McEwen who takes the sprint
for 14th. Tombak challenged him, but nearly took himself out against a Gerolsteiner
rider. The gap is well over 10 minutes at the end, so Casar will move himself
up into the top 15-20.
That's all folks from Stage 12, which
turned out to be one for the French after all. Please tune at tomorrow at 13:20
local time (-6 hours USA east, -9 hours USA etc.). No big changes to the GC,
or the white jersey, or the polka dot jersey, but Hushovd managed to gain a
small advantage over his main rival O'Grady in the race for green.
1 David Moncoutié (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit Par Telephone 4.20.06
2 Sandy Casar (Fra) Française Des Jeux 0.57
3 Angel Vicioso (Spa) Liberty Seguros-Würth
4 Patrice Halgand (Fra) Credit Agricole
5 José Luis Arrieta (Spa) Illes Balears-Caisse d'Epargne
6 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas-Bianchi
7 Axel Merckx (Bel) Davitamon-Lotto
8 Juan Manuel Garate (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir
9 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Credit 3.15
10 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Cofidis
11 Massimo Giunti (Ita) Fassa Bortolo
12 Stephan Schreck (Ger) T-Mobile Team
13 Giovanni Lombardi (Ita) Team CSC
14 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto 10.33
General classification after stage 12
1 Lance Armstrong (USA) Discovery Channel 46.30.36
2 Michael Rasmussen (Den) Rabobank 0.38
3 Christophe Moreau (Fra) Credit Agricole 2.34
4 Ivan Basso (Ita) Team CSC 2.40
5 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Illes Balears-Caisse d'Epargne 3.16
6 Santiago Botero (Col) Phonak Hearing Systems 3.48
7 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner 3.58
8 Francisco Mancebo (Spa) Illes Balears-Caisse d'Epargne 4.00
9 Jan Ullrich (Ger) T-Mobile Team 4.02
10 Andreas Klöden (Ger) T-Mobile Team 4.16
the commentary team
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