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11th Tour Down Under - ProT

Adelaide, South Australia, Australia, January 18-25, 2009

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Stage 5 - January 24: Snapper Point - Willunga, 148 km

Complete live report

15:52 CST   
Mmm, all that cheese and wine was just fine as we went to the Barossa Valley for Stage 4. Join Cyclingnews again on Saturday for Stage 5 of the Tour Down Under. This will be the big one which likely decides the race - so let see who can and can't cut the mustard on the penultimate day.

Tune in for the Tour Down Under live daily around 11:00 local Australia time (CDT), 1:30 European time (CEST)/ 19:30 (USA East).

10:59 CST   
Welcome back for Stage 5 of the Tour Down Under. I hope our wine and cheese tasting group aren’t battling hangovers this morning, as today we’re in for one heck of a ride.

11:02 CST   
It’s 148 kilometres in length, it’s going to be fast and it’s certainly going to be brutal. Depending on how it plays out, today’s stage could well hand us a winner for this year’s Tour Down Under.

11:02 CST   
With that said, there’s several riders in with a chance on today’s stage and a close finish could see the race’s 11th edition decided on time bonuses on the final stage. It’s probably unlikely, but there’s a big question over just who will be able to conquer Willunga Hill not once but two times.

11:02 CST   
The peloton has rolled out from today's start line. Let the race begin!

11:03 CST   
Already there's been an attacked, Jack Bobridge (UniSA) is away.

11:03 CST   
Bobridge has been joined by Robbie McEwen (Katusha).

11:04 CST   
Bernhard Eisel (Team Columbia - High Road) and Mickaël Buffaz (Cofidis) have bridged to the leaders, Robbie McEwen (Katusha) and Jack Bobridge (UniSA).

11:04 CST   
William Walker (Fuji-Servetto) has withdrawn from the race and not started today's penultimate stage.

11:05 CST   
Lampre and Euskaltel - Euskadi are giving chase.

11:06 CST   
The peloton is chasing hard to bring back the riders - they're obviously not wanting these riders to get away.

11:06 CST    3.5km/144.5km to go
The race has been brought back together 3.5 kilometres into the race.

11:07 CST   
Perrig Quemeneur (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Pablo Urtasun (Euskaltel - Euskadi) and Jack Bobridge (UniSA) have now attacked. Nicki Sørensen (Team Saxo Bank) is trying to cross to the trio.

11:07 CST   
You should know the drill by now people, but just so we’re clear, I welcome your predictions, feedback, abuse and monetary offers to commentator@cyclingnews.com.

11:08 CST   
Nicki Sørensen (Team Saxo Bank) has caught the three leaders to form a group of four, but a chase group of 10 riders is within reach.

11:08 CST   
Looks like this move isn't going to be it either, with the peloton working hard to close it down. Anyone else sensing a busy day ahead?

11:09 CST   
You will be pleased to hear there’s no neutral zone today. So yes, Lance Armstrong (Astana) can attack from the get go today.

11:10 CST   
Pablo Urtasun (Euskaltel - Euskadi), Stef Clement (Rabobank), Mathew Hayman (Rabobank), Perrig Quemeneur (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne), Tom Stubbe (Silence - Lotto), Nicki Sørensen (Team Saxo Bank), Sébastien Hinault (AG2R La Mondiale), Jack Bobridge (UniSA) and Gregory Henderson (Team Columbia - High Road) are the riders now in the lead group.

11:11 CST   
Rabobank has a strong presence in the break. The team is clearly wanting to be a part of anything that happens today, the Dutch team believes it can get Graeme Brown (Rabobank) over Willunga Hill - twice - for victory today.

11:11 CST   
The weather is playing into the hands of someone like Allan Davis (Quick Step) today. Davis isn’t just a pure sprinter, the little hard man can sure climb too, but the cool conditions today will take away the advantage that bigger engines might have had if today’s stage were struck by a heat wave.

11:12 CST   
The leading group has 400 metres on the peloton. There's three smaller chase groups in between the two main groups.

11:13 CST   
Forecasted weather conditions for today is a high of 26 degrees Celsius – one of the coolest days of this year’s tour – with an 18 kilometre/hour wind blowing West/South-West. The cloud cover floating around this morning has kept the temperature down at 19 degrees Celsius, while humidity is around 49%. Cloud has currently cleared and it’s blue skies, all around me…

11:14 CST   
The leading group has 22 seconds on the peloton now, while seven riders are floating in between hoping to get in the group.

11:16 CST   
The seven riders have caught the leading group, but the peloton still isn't happy to let anyone go. It's rapidly drawing the group back in and looks certain to catch it any moment now.

11:18 CST    13km/135km to go
The group has been brought back and the peloton is all together at kilometre 13. Not for long, I suspect.

11:19 CST   
Stef Clement (Rabobank) and Maciej Bodnar (Liquigas) are the next to attack.

11:19 CST   
Ops, that move is over now too.

11:20 CST   
Jack Bobridge (UniSA) is keen on being the one to get away today. He's now attacked.

11:21 CST   
Jack Bobridge (UniSA) has been joined by Matthieu Sprick (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Travis Meyer (UniSA), Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre - N.G.C) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne).

11:21 CST   
The group has amassed a lead of 10 seconds so far.

11:22 CST   
Inspired by Willunga’s long history in growing almonds, and the fact people have referred to me as it over recent days (actually, the word used was moronic, but it’s close enough), today we’re going with a nutty theme. Besides, we could see a few hard nuts cracked on today’s course.

11:24 CST   
It was looking like no joy for these guys too, as their gap dropped to 80 metres, but the peloton seems to have changed its mind. The group is out to 200 metres now. The peloton might have decided not to bust a nut chasing these guys down.

11:25 CST   
Alexandr Pliuschin (AG2R La Mondiale) is chasing down the lead group. Looks like Martin Elminger has decided he needs a man up front.

11:25 CST   
The gap has drifted out every so slightly, to 17 seconds.

11:26 CST   
Josu Agirre Aseginolaza (Euskaltel - Euskadi) also wants to roll up front, he's gone off the front of the peloton too.

11:26 CST   
Last year’s trek around this course was very different to what we will see today, for a number of reasons. The first is the much hyped second lap of Willunga Hill. We know pretty well how brutal this climb can be when the riders do a lap of it, and also what type of rider we can expect to survive, but the addition of a second lap this year has changed the game significantly.

11:26 CST   
The other difference is weather. Last year Andre Greipel had Adam Hansen time trialing the final section of the race, which blew the field apart in incredibly hot conditions. As we’ve already mentioned, there won’t be that same element of heat for today’s stage, but there has been tougher racing on this year’s stages and it will come down to just who was able to recover best yesterday after Thursday’s tough stage.

11:27 CST   
Josu Agirre Aseginolaza (Euskaltel - Euskadi) and Alexandr Pliuschin (AG2R La Mondiale) have been caught by the peloton, but the gap to the lead group has gone out to 24 seconds.

11:31 CST   
We've already got predictions on today's winner - one person things Jack Bobridge (UniSA) is the man for today. It's a big call this far out.

11:32 CST    22km/126km to go
The leading group's margin has grown to 40 seconds at kilometre 22. The riders are just finishing their first of five visits to Willunga's Main Road, with this section being used in both of today's loops.

11:34 CST   
Okay all, it's time to crack open a few nutty stories. Tell me what the nuttiest thing you've done is (doesn't necessarily have to involve nuts)? You know the address, send them over.

11:35 CST   
Quick Step is controlling the peloton's pace at the moment. The team will be keen to keep the break's gap down below three minutes, I would think, in the hope of brining race leader Allan Davis to the first climb in a strong position.

11:36 CST   
Gert Steegmans (Team Katusha) has pulled over for a wheel change. Steegmans went out the back of the peloton on yesterday's stage and will probably be one of the last in today too.

11:36 CST   
Steegmans is already back in the bunch. What a little speedster.

11:38 CST   
The opening 90 kilometres of today’s stage is relatively flat, with a gradual climb to 100 metres over 20 kilometres before descending and then repeating the lap one and a half times more. This lap starts down by Aldinga Beach in Snapper Point before heading to McLaren Vale, through the town of Willunga and then back towards the beach.

11:40 CST   
After completing their two and a half laps on this circuit, the peloton will turn left instead of right once it reaches the town of Willunga, where it will set off on the first of two laps up Willunga Hill. The climb rises 400 metres in about four kilometers and descends just as quickly on the other side. Two laps over this should break up the field, leaving the riders to power along the slightly upward finish.

11:41 CST    29km/119km to go
Our lead group - Jack Bobridge (UniSA), Matthieu Sprick (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Travis Meyer (UniSA), Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre - N.G.C) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne) - now has a 1.05 minute lead over the peloton.

11:45 CST   
A bunch of riders are catching back up with the peloton as it gets close to the beach again. Probably a good idea they went for the nature stop before getting to some of Adelaide's finest sandy beaches.

11:45 CST    32km/116km to go
The gap has expanded a little - with some help from the peloton's nature stop. It's out to 1.30 minutes now.

11:47 CST   
Like only a Kiwi could, Greg Henderson (Columbia) was using Donky Kong analogies to explain how today's race will go. The rider was in one of the (many) earlier moves but is now in the peloton.

"I think there are going to be fireworks today, heading up the climb twice," he said at the start. "It’s not rocket science – we’ve got to try and unload Alby and Stuey. It’s going to be very interesting. I can get Dodge to the bottom of the climb no worries – that’s my job, along with Rendog and Eisel, Hansen and George. We’ll keep him out of the wind all day and let them do their stuff. It’ll be on like Donkey Kong!"

11:48 CST   
He was attacking earlier this week, but Mathieu Perget (Caisse d'Epargne) has stopped for a new rear wheel now.

11:48 CST   
The gap from the lead group back to the peloton is now at two minutes.

11:50 CST   
Local boy Stuart O’Grady (Saxo Bank) told Cyclingnews yesterday that he believes race leader Allan Davis (Quick Step) will be difficult to beat today. Of course, O’Grady himself sits just 15 seconds adrift and is in spectacular form, meaning that the Australian – with a little help from team steam engine Jens Voight – could bring home his third victory.

11:52 CST   
Mathieu Perget (Caisse d'Epargne) is back in the peloton. We can't help but wonder if we'll be seeing more of Caisse d'Epargne later today. They've not done much to date, and they've be nuts to pass up on the chance today.

The Caisse d'Epargne boys were out late last night...out on the Hilton Hotel steps. Sitting there's not really what I'd call a big Friday night in Adelaide, but each to their own.

11:53 CST   
We have two sprints on today’s course. The start line in Aldinga Beach is the site of both sprints, at kilometre 40.3 - just four kilometres away - and 80.6.

11:55 CST   
Jack Bobridge (UniSA) was keen to get amongst it today...and he has. The youngster spoke to us before the start. "I’d love to get myself in a move today," he said. "I haven’t been in the early break this week – I’ve tried plenty of days but unfortunately I’ve missed it. A few of the other boys have got in there for us. I’d love to make it this morning, and like you said, it’s whether I can pick the right one.

"I don’t think they’re going to let too many riders go, and the conditions don’t look too bad, but I think it’s always going to come back for that hill," he added. "Unless you’ve got eight minutes going into the climb, you’re never going to stay away."

11:56 CST   
Quick Step still has control of the peloton as it nears the sprint point. The Belgian squad is holding the gap steady at 2 minutes.

11:58 CST   
While I await your nutty stories, let me share one of mine. Traffic was so bad coming out of Angaston yesterday that race director Mike Turtur couldn't make it back in time for his A Current Affair television slot.

With their back up against the wall and nobody of any significants back at the Hilton Hotel (having the Cyclingnews.com blimp comes in handy at times), they asked yours truly to sub in for Mike. The network, however, wasn't so keen...turns out I have a face for live coverages!

12:00 CST   
Results from the first sprint are in, which means the race is about to turn away from the beach and head inland again.

Sprint #1 results

1 Travis Meyer (UniSA)
2 Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne)
3 Jack Bobridge (UniSA)

12:04 CST    44km/104km to go
The situation is holding steady at the moment, but Quick Step's boys are working hard to keep it that way. The gap is still 2.05 minutes 44 kilometres into the race, but like I said, Quick Step is driving hard to keep it that way.

12:05 CST   
Anyone wanting a closer look at what the riders are facing today, you can check it out here. http://www.cyclingnews.com/road/2009/jan09/TDU09/?id=stages/TDU095

12:06 CST   
Brad's question 'Just wondering if the peloton "may contain traces of nuts"?' has inspired me to do a poll.

Lets vote on the nuttiest cyclist of all time? Give me names, and justification/s for the nomination.

12:08 CST   
It's a good thing the sun has come out today - there's tens of thousands of people lining today's course. It's visibly more people than in previous years - with the entire circuit lined with people.

12:10 CST   
Quick Step is still the work horse in today's peloton. The team will need to be careful it can still get Allan Davis over Willunga twice after doing all this work, and isn't setting up one of its rivals to take the spoils.

12:10 CST   
Allan Davis (Quick Step) was excited on the start line when we spoke to him. "We’re pumped up, ready go, although we’ll just try to stay relaxed and keep the moves down, the heart rate down – hopefully we’ll be in a good spot before the first climb up Willunga, and see what happens after that."

12:12 CST    50km/98km to go
The break - Jack Bobridge (UniSA), Matthieu Sprick (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Travis Meyer (UniSA), Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre - N.G.C) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne) - has extended its lead to 2.30 minutes at kilometre 50.

12:18 CST   
Meylina may be freezing up in Canada, but she's got an interesting prediction for today "Lance and Sweet Baby Jesus will attack shortly."

Someone was telling me that Johan Bruyneel was looking much more confident today than in days gone. Perhaps LANCE ARMSTRONG (for dramatic impact) will have a crack at today's stage!

Wouldn't that cause a stir...

12:19 CST   
The day’s King of the Mountains will be contested in the obvious spot on Willunga Hill. They come at kilometre 106.3 and 128.8 respectively.

12:19 CST   
While your votes for nutty cyclists continue to roll in, I’ve already run one poll today, although this time it was in the media room this morning. The consensus is that Luis Leon Sanchez (Caisse d’Epargne) and Michael Rogers (Columbia) are the men to watch today, although whether they can take the time they need to win overall remains to be seen.

12:23 CST   
Matt Lloyd (Silence-Lotto) has been active on the climbs in recent days. The cool-cat is hoping to let his legs do the talking again later today. "I think it’s the last opportunity to try and create something and make it happen. I’m looking forward to the two climbs, and we’ll have to try and make things happen again.

"I think in the past we’ve seen bigger teams happy to ride and the sprinters know that they’ll get across on the long descent, and if the two laps do unfold at a really high pace then it will break the field up and we’ll try and get some groups away," he said. "That may provide the likelihood for something more positive to happen."

12:24 CST    58km/90km to go
Nothing's changed out on the course as the riders head back down Willunga's Main Rd for the second time. Quick Step is driving, the break has a 2.30 minute lead. As they say, big wheels keep on turnin'.

12:30 CST   
Seems I was wrong about Gert Steegmans (Katusha), he won't be the last home today. He's just abandoned the race...thanks for coming Gert!

12:31 CST   
George Hincapie (Team Columbia - High Road) is having a wheel swap at the moment, while his team-mate Bernhard Eisel has told an Australian news agency that this year's Tour is too hard...go figure.

12:32 CST   
Nicholas has given us a "bold" suggestion for the stage outcome, but I think he's close to the money. "Jensie lights it up, up Willunga with Stuey in tow. Dodger and Lance prominent too. O'Grady wins stage."

12:33 CST   
George is back on board. Hincapie has re-joined the peloton after a wheel swap.

12:36 CST   
Okay so far you've voted Djamolidine Abdoujaparov as the nuttiest bike racer of all time thus far. Tristan said it's for "his erratic sprinting style, massive crashes and total fearlessness, the guy must have been insane. And he has a name to match."

To those who voted for Lance as the least nuttiest (not that we were even running a poll on that!), I think that's a bit harsh. The guy has, after all, raised $400 million for cancer.

12:37 CST    68km/80km to go
The break's gap has slipped out a little further as the race reaches kilometre 68. Jack Bobridge (UniSA), Matthieu Sprick (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Travis Meyer (UniSA), Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre - N.G.C) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne) have a 2.50 minute lead as they reach the beach for the final time.

12:41 CST   
I must give an honourable mention to Dave Zabriskie in the nuttiest rider category. Seems his compatriots hold him in high regard when it comes to the nutometer.

12:42 CST   
We’ve had several people interested in how Robbie McEwen is feeling in recent days. I ran into his physio Jens in the lift this morning who said he’s feeling fine – the only thing that stopped him from finishing higher yesterday was being knocked by someone, which caused his foot to come out of the cleat. Jens tells me he expects McEwen will be amongst it tomorrow.

12:44 CST   
Things were rolling along smoothly, but there's been a crash in the peloton.

12:45 CST   
It seems Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank) - third on general classification - may have been involved in it.

12:45 CST    74km/74km to go
The time gap has gone out a little more, to three minutes, as the peloton re-groups from the accident.

12:46 CST   
All riders involved in the crash are back on the road. They're making their way back through the convoy now and should re-join the peloton shortly. Alexandre Usov (Cofidis) was a little slow to get going, but we understand he has continued.

12:47 CST   
Pablo Lastras Garcia (Caisse d'Epargne) has made his way back into the peloton after the crash. Saxo Bank has time trial Stuart O'Grady back into the peloton too.

12:48 CST   
Mickaël Chérel (Française Des Jeux) has also re-joined the peloton after the accident.

12:49 CST   
Alexandre Usov (Cofidis) and Scott Davis (UniSA), brother of race leader Allan, are still chasing the peloton after the accident.

12:51 CST   
Euskaltel - Euskadi has taken to the front of the peloton to assist Quick Step with the chase.

12:52 CST   
Of course when asked what’s going to happen today, cycling commentator Paul Sherwin offered a different slant on things. “I’m going to drive to Willunga and have a pie,” he said.

12:54 CST    80.6km/67.4km to go
The second sprint has been run and won - by the same people as the first - meaning the race has finished its second lap of the first circuit. It will now do half a lap back to Main Rd in Willunga, where is starts the finishing circuit. Lets get ready to race.

Sprint #2 results

1 Travis Meyer (UniSA)
2 Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne)
3 Jack Bobridge (UniSA)

12:55 CST    81km/67km to go
With the ride to the base of Willunga Hill just 20 kilometres, the break is starting to be reeled in by the peloton. It now has a 2.50 minute lead.

12:56 CST   
Alexandre Usov (Cofidis) has made it back to the peloton after the earlier crash.

12:59 CST   
Scott Davis (UniSA) has also made it back to the peloton, meaning everyone in the crash earlier has made it back into the group.

13:01 CST   
Jens Voigt (Saxo Bank) also spoke to Cyclingnews.com this morning. "Stu and I have know each other for many years, and we know each other’s abilities – sometimes we can communicate without words. I just look at him and I know, ‘Ok, we can go a little bit faster…’ or I look at him and go, ‘Ohhh, no, he’s on the limit…’ We can look after him – he’s our main man, it’s his home country and home crowd, so we’ll sure try and keep him on the podium. Maybe move up one or two spots, but we really ought to try not to let the guys from behind come up and pass around.

"It’s going to be like a little tricky to balance – it’s going to be a little bit of jiggling the many factors in the game to be in control of all of them. We’re still relaxed, and we’ll talk today – there are no silly tactics. Stuey just needs to be on a good day and we’ll survive it."

13:02 CST   
I also ran into Matthew Wilson (UniSA) in the lift this morning. Matty is looking incredibly lean at the moment (and he was already a skinny guy) and could give the ProTour riders a shake on the climb.

13:04 CST   
The race is on its way to the first climb, so lets weed out the weaker nuts and pick ourselves a final selection. No, that's not a metaphor for the race, I want to know your favour nut for the title 'Hard-nut of nuts'?

Brazilian, cashews, peanut, almonds...you tell me, who gets the coverted title.

13:06 CST    88km/60km to go
Ohh, it's getting close now. The break-away's margin has dropped to 2.38 minutes and the tension is starting to grow. It's time to crack this race open like a peanut.

13:06 CST   
It's still Euskaltel - Euskadi and Quick Step doing all the work up front.

13:13 CST    94km/54km to go
The gap is coming back in a controlled fashion. It's still got a 2.15 minutes gap at kilometre 94.

13:16 CST   
Caisse d'Epargne director Neil Stephens told us his thoughts on today. "Rojas is the sort of guy who doesn’t get up the hill great; he’s not a climber as such, but he’s pretty tough – a bit like Allan or Stuart. Luis isn’t more like your Michael Rogers or George Hincapie. I suppose the strength in our team is that the block itself is pretty good, without having anyone that’s really brilliant. Luis is the strongest guy we’ve got, although unfortunately with bonus seconds he’s down on GC… but we’ve just got to play with the cards we’ve got.

"We’re not one of the clear favourites, and like I said we’ve lost bonus seconds – we’re about 20 seconds down – so we’ve just got to see what happens with the other teams and maybe profiteer a little bit from what they do."

13:18 CST    96km/52km to go
The peloton has taken another 10 seconds out of the break. The race is entering the early slopes of this afternoon's climb now, before it really kicks up in about four kilometres time.

13:23 CST    101km/47km to go
The gap is back to two minutes as the lead group passes under the finish banner. It's time to turn towards Willunga Hill, here we go.

13:24 CST   
Before the race plays out too much, my fellow nuts, I need prediction. We might be a mixed bag, but we need to decide how this is going to go.

Let me know people.

13:25 CST   
There's a massive crowd on Willunga Hill. It's standing room only at the best of times, but this year it's pulled a huge attendance.

13:27 CST   
Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank) told me on the pool deck yesterday (on H.M.A.S. Hilton Lift) that several teams haven't played their cards. Well, Columbia is playing its.

The American squad has taken over work at the head of the peloton as it reaches Willunga Hill.

13:28 CST    103km/45km to go
The gap between the peloton and leaders Jack Bobridge (UniSA), Matthieu Sprick (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Travis Meyer (UniSA), Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre - N.G.C) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne) has dropped to 1.40 minutes as they start climbing.

13:30 CST   
Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha) has attacked the lead group and gone off the front, but Jack Bobridge (UniSA) isn't going to let him go alone and has followed the move.

13:30 CST   
The rest of the lead group is being hunted down by the peloton.

13:34 CST   
The peloton has split in two now, the front chase group includes: Michael Rogers (Team Columbia - High Road), Adam Hansen (Team Columbia - High Road), Jonas Ljungblad (Silence - Lotto), Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto), Tom Stubbe (Silence - Lotto), Jesus Hernandez (Astana), Jussi Veikkanen (Française Des Jeux), Jérémy Roy (Française Des Jeux), Wesley Sulzberger (Française Des Jeux), Matthew Wilson (UniSA), Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Caisse d'Epargne), Mathieu Perget (Caisse d'Epargne), Javier Megías Leal (Fuji-Servetto) and Rein Taaramae (Cofidis).

13:36 CST   
Rabobank's Graeme Brown is struggling on the climb. Brown had hoped to be a contender for the overall win today.

13:37 CST   
Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha) and Jack Bobridge (UniSA) have a 400 metre gap on the chase group, which now includes race leader Allan Davis (Quick Step).

13:40 CST   
The green jersey group - including Graeme Brown (Rabobank) - is closing on the group in front which includes Allan Davis (Quick Step).

13:40 CST   
The two groups have come together, creating a peloton of about 50 riders. Brown has done well to hold it together up the hill.

13:41 CST   
Behind another group of 10 riders are chasing the peloton, trying to get back in the race.

13:43 CST   
Brown was able to get back into the race with the help of his Rabobank teammates, three of which were driving their group up Willunga Hill.

13:44 CST    115km/33km to go
The race leaders Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha) and Jack Bobridge (UniSA) have a 49 second gap on the main group containing Allan Davis (Quick Step) and Graeme Brown (Rabobank).

13:46 CST   
Well we're backing an American for today's win it seems, my fellow nuttys. Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Slipstream) is the consensus over Michael Rogers (Columbia).

13:47 CST   
Luis Leon Sanchez (Caisse d'Epargne) has had to swap a wheel at a crucial time in the race.

13:48 CST   
The group of 10 riders hanging behind the main chase group has now caught it, forming a group of about 70 riders.

13:50 CST   
Glenn d'Hollander (Silence - Lotto) has attacked the chase group and gained a small advantage.

13:51 CST   
Glenn d'Hollander (Silence - Lotto) has been caught but now Vladimir Efimkin (AG2R La Mondiale) has attacked the group.

13:51 CST   
My informants tell me that Lance Armstrong (Astana) is indeed amongst the 70 riders in the chase group.

13:53 CST   
Vladimir Efimkin (AG2R La Mondiale) has been joined by Martin Müller (Team Milram), Mathew Hayman (Rabobank) and Matteo Tosatto (Quick Step) in chasing down the race leaders Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha) and Jack Bobridge (UniSA).

13:54 CST   

13:57 CST   
Seems I just pissed off half of Canada, but last time I checked Canada was in North America and therefore American isn't technically wrong for Ryder? Saved on a technicality.

13:57 CST   
I can feel the next flood of e-mails coming already.

13:58 CST   
The chase group of Vladimir Efimkin (AG2R La Mondiale), Martin Müller (Team Milram), Mathew Hayman (Rabobank) and Matteo Tosatto (Quick Step) are just 20 seconds behind Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Jack Bobridge (UniSA). The peloton is 43 seconds behind the pair.

13:59 CST   
KOM 1# results

1 Jack Bobridge (UniSA)
2 Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha)
3 Julien El Farès (Cofidis)
4 Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d'Epargne)
5 Anders Lund (Team Saxo Bank)

14:01 CST   
Okay, okay, I admit...I stuffed up. Yes, Ryder is Canadian.

I'm amazed how many Canadians corrected me on that, but didn't vote for him? Interesting.

14:01 CST   
Adam Hansen (Team Columbia - High Road) has attacked the chase group.

14:03 CST   
The riders are about to take on Willunga Hill for a second time.

14:04 CST   
David Moncoutié (Cofidis) is leading the race with Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto), Adam Hansen (Team Columbia - High Road) and Lance Armstrong (Astana) chasing.

14:04 CST   
David Moncoutié (Cofidis and Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto) are together at the head of the race while Lance Armstrong (Astana) is driving the peloton, having been caught by it.

14:06 CST   
David Moncoutié (Cofidis) has pushed ahead of Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto), while Laurent Lefèvre (Bbox Bouygues Telecom) is also chasing. Lance Armstrong (Astana) is leading a group of about 15 riders a further 200 metres behind.

14:06 CST   
Race leader Allan Davis (Quick Step) is a further 200 metres behind.

14:08 CST   
Yes Barry, we are still technically Brits. I've dug a hole, haven't I?

14:10 CST   
Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto) and David Moncoutié (Cofidis) are leading the race by 200 metres over Armstrong's group of 10 riders. Allan Davis (Quick Step) is a further 250 metres behind.

14:10 CST   
The three groups are in sight of one another as they reach the top of Willunga Hill.

14:12 CST   
The lead group now contains Michael Rogers (Team Columbia - High Road), Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto), David Moncoutié (Cofidis), Wesley Sulzberger (Française Des Jeux) and José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Caisse d'Epargne).

Lance Armstrong (Astana) group is at 10 seconds while Allan Davis (Quick Step) group is at 26 seconds.

14:13 CST   
Allan Davis (Quick Step) group has now caught Lance Armstrong's (Armstrong) group.

14:13 CST   
George Hincapie (Team Columbia - High Road), Rémy Di Grégorio (Française Des Jeux) and Mauro Santambrogio (Lampre - N.G.C) have gone off the front of the Armstrong group and are chasing the leaders.

14:15 CST   
The trio have joined the leaders now to join a lead group of eight, which has 10 seconds over the leader's jersey group.

14:15 CST   
Michael Rogers (Team Columbia - High Road), Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto) and Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Caisse d'Epargne) have attacked the leading group now.

14:18 CST   
Micahel Rogers (Columbia) has attacked the lead group as the riders make their way back down into Willunga.

14:18 CST   
Rogers is looking strong and has been backed by many. Thus far he's proving worthy of that support.

14:19 CST   
Micahel Rogers (Columbia) has been caught by the leading group of nine riders. Allan Davis (Quick Step) and Lance Armstrong (Astana) are only 50 metres behind.

14:19 CST   
The leading group has been caught by Davis and Armstrong group. It's going to be a tough run to the finish, with the race now inside eight kilometres.

14:20 CST   
There's approximately 50 riders in the leader's group now.

14:21 CST   
Jack Bobridge (UniSA) has just been announced the day's most aggressive rider.

14:22 CST   
Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank) is in the lead group, his team has moved towards the front.

14:22 CST   
The Quick Step squad has now also moved forward. The two teams are pushing the pace higher.

14:24 CST   
It's going to be a bunch sprint to the finish with all the top contenders at this rate.

14:24 CST   
The race looks like it will come down to time bonuses.

14:24 CST   
The front group is still all together. It will come down to how the sprinters legs are.

14:25 CST   
Graeme Brown (Rabobank) won't win this year's Tour Down Under, he has been dropped back to the trailing group which is 1.20 minuted behind.

14:26 CST   
Brown was doing it tough on the first lap over Willunga, but wasn't able to hold on on the second run.

14:26 CST   
Big Jens Voight (Saxo Bank) is controlling the group for O'Grady.

14:27 CST   
The whole of Saxo Bank are working for O'Grady. If he can grab a victory here, it still won't be enough to take the overall lead.

14:28 CST   
If he can't get the victory, his chances of a third Tour Down Under are lost.

14:28 CST    146km/2km to go
Team Columbia is trying to take control in the peloton.

14:29 CST   
It's hard to see how Allan Davis (Quick Step) won't win this year's event.

14:29 CST   
Euskaltel - Euskadi is trying to break it up.

14:30 CST   
Euskaltel - Euskadi isn't going to be able to do it, Quick Step is too strong.

14:30 CST   
The Belgian team is coming through with the race leader.

14:31 CST   
Davis is going to take this and boost his leading margin to 25 seconds.

14:31 CST   
Yes, he's got it, Queenslander Allan Davis (Quick Step) has won another stage of the Tour Down Under.

14:31 CST   
The victory cements Davis' lead going into tomorrow's final stage.

14:33 CST   
Martin Elmiger (Ag2R) has taken third place with Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank) again just missing the podium in fourth.

14:36 CST   
Quick Step's Allan Davis told us: "Absolutely unbelievable, I wouldn't be here without my team. It's been another amazing day with the crowds. I just can't believe how well the event has gone. Thank you."

14:41 CST   
Provisional results

1 Allan Davis (Aus) Quick Step
2 Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Team Katusha
3 Martin Elmiger (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale
4 Stuart O’Grady (Aus) Saxo Bank

14:43 CST   
Results from the second KOM didn't arrive until the sprint finish, so here they are a little delayed.

KOM #2 results

1 Matthew Lloyd (Silence - Lotto)
2 David Moncoutié (Cofidis)
3 Thomas Rohregger (Team Milram)
4 José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Caisse d'Epargne)
5 Michael Rogers (Team Columbia - High Road)

14:50 CST   
Corrected provisional results:

1 Allan Davis (Aus) Quick Step                                      3.28.33
2 José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne                            
3 Martin Elmiger (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale                                    
4 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank                                      
5 Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française Des Jeux                                      
6 Laurent Lefèvre (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom                              
7 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) Française Des Jeux                               
8 Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-Slipstream                                   
9 Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence - Lotto                                      
General Classification after Stage 5
1 Allan Davis (Aus) Quick Step 17.44.59 2 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank 0.25 3 José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne 0.30 4 Martin Elmiger (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale

14:59 CST   
Aw, nuts. Well, that's the decisive stage to Willunga ladies and gentlemen. I was hoping we'd get a few cracking around Willunga, but in the end it was a mass sprint that would decide the outcome of this year's event.

While it would have been nice to see a rider win by enough of a margin to provide a surprise victor, it's hard to be disappointed in Allan Davis' (Quick Step) success story. From guilty by association a few years back, to having his name cleared and fighting back into a top team, winning a ProTour event is the icing on the cake for Alby.

Heading into tomorrow, Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank), would need to win the race 16 seconds ahead of Davis in order to take his third title. While anything is possible, on the closed circuit race around Adelaide's streets it seems unlikely Davis can be outdone.

Tune in to see if Alby takes one for the road in tomorrow's final stage.

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