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Nozal hangs on as Valverde steals a stage

By Andrew Hood • Published

By Andrew Hood

The speedy Valverde storms past the two breakaways

The speedy Valverde storms past the two breakaways

Photo: AFP

Heras attacked, shadowed by Cardenas, who refused to work

Heras attacked, shadowed by Cardenas, who refused to work

Photo: Graham Watson

The 8.3km final hump to La Pandera to cap the 172km 15th stage of the Vuelta a España proved too short for Roberto Heras (U.S. Postal) and too steep for Isidro Nozal (ONCE), but just right for Alejandro Valverde (Kelme).

Heras attacked as promised, but couldn’t make up the time he needed to against Nozal on the steepest climb of the Vuelta. The young race leader forfeited some time to his rival – 1 minute, 11 seconds – but retained a comfortable 4:02 margin over Heras.

“We’re still pretty happy with how things went,” said Johan Bruyneel, U.S. Postal’s sport director. “The team controlled the stage, Roberto attacked and did the best he could. In a climb that’s not so long you cannot expect to take more than one minute or so.”

As for Valverde, he took the stage victory when he shot past Heras and Felix Cardenas (Labarca 2) with 300 yards to go to win his second summit finish of this Vuelta.

“I felt good during all the climb, but I never expected to win,” said Valverde, who won in 4 hours, 20 minutes, 39 seconds (39.6 kph). “When I saw that I could catch Heras and Cardenas, I gave it everything. I owe this victory to my teammate Oscar Sevilla, who made a great job today.”

Nozal seemed relieved to have dodged a bullet. Heras dropped Nozal on a steep section with 15-percent grades about 4km from the finish and left the ONCE protégé stranded without teammates until Marcos Serrano and Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano helped tow him up the final sections.

“I was okay with two attacks, but when the third attack came, I saw I couldn’t go and I went at my own rhythm. Marcos was there and then Igor arrived,” said Nozal, who finished 15th at 1:13 back. “We had thought we would lose about one minute, so that’s okay.”

La Pandera: Hunting ground for Heras

As far as U.S. Postal is concerned, the stage turned out as well as the team could have realistically expected. A four-man break – German Nieto (Relax), Cesar Garcia Calvo (Labarca 2), Carlos Barroso (Milaneza) and Carlos Torrent (Paternina) – chugged away and held out until the entry into Jaén, the glittering whitewashed city at the base of the La Pandera climb.

Postal did enough work to keep the quartet dangling between three and four minutes all the way across the rolling approach to Jaén, home to popular U.S. Postal rider Manuel Beltrán.

When the race neared Jaén, the team mopped up the break and set the stage for the final showdown on La Pandera, just as Bruyneel had scripted.

“The team was doing great work from the start. We took control of the race. Our goal to try to bring the peloton together to the base of the La Pandera with as many riders trying to win,” Bruyneel said. “If five, six guys get away, the stage is over and it’s easier for the leader to control the stage. The team did a great job to get those guys under control.”

Heras came into the stage with the odds stacked against him. While very steep, La Pandera is only 8.3km, and Heras was looking at a 5:13 gap to Nozal. Barring a major meltdown, the Posties expected Nozal would be strong enough to hang on until the final few kilometers – and that’s just what happened.

After plowing through Jaén, Erik Zabel (Telekom) played his card at the day’s third intermediate sprint, shooting ahead of the peloton to snatch the points and regain the points jersey from Alessandro Petacchi (Fassa Bortolo).

Heading up the category-2 Alto de los Villares with 24km to go, Kelme hammered the pace to soften up the peloton. Roberto Laiseka (Euskeltel) was among several riders trying to get away, but Kelme and Postal worked together to keep a lid on things until La Pandera.

Laiseka was swooped up just after the initial 14-percent ramps that open La Pandera climb. Cardenas, in the mountain-points jersey, made an attack with 7km to go while Beltran kept a solid pace at the front of the lead group, now down to about 20 riders.

With just over 4km to go, Heras attacked and dropped Nozal. Heras quickly bridged up to Cardenas, but the Colombian refused to help Heras set the pace. According to Bruyneel, Heras told Cardenas he was more interested in gaining time than winning the stage, but the Colombian wouldn’t work.

“I’m glad Cardenas didn’t win,” Bruyneel said. “We talked about this scenario before the stage, that if there was another rider up the road, we wouldn’t worry about winning the stage. Roberto told Cardenas this, but Cardenas refused to work with him. He had no interests behind him. The easiest thing for him to do to win the stage was to work together with Roberto.”

Nozal was languishing at about a minute behind Heras, first Serrano, then Galdeano caught up to their young charge. They formed a group of nine riders who worked their way up the final steep sections, and Nozal’s worries were largely over.

“If I would have tried to keep the rhythm of all these attacks, maybe I would have lost everything,” Nozal said. “The wisest thing was to ride at my own rhythm. I don’t consider myself a climber and Heras is one of the world’s best climbers, so today was a very good stage for me.”

While Cardenas was glued to Heras’s wheel, Kelme’s Valverde and Oscar Sevilla were steadily making up ground. They inched within 11 seconds in the final kilometer, and the faster sprinter Valverde bolted down a short descent before the final climb to surprise Heras and Cardenas.

Valverde swooped past the pair and easily held off Cardenas to grab an exciting victory.

“We would have liked to have Oscar win, but Alejandro had the espiritu asesino (the killer instinct) today,” said Kelme’s sport director, Vicente Belda.

Sierra Nevada on tap

The mood at ONCE is upbeat after surviving La Pandera with minimal losses. Up next following Monday’s rest day is Tuesday’s 162km 16th stage, concluding with the 30km climb to Sierra Nevada, a long grind with an average grade of 5.7 percent.

Galdeano admits he might lose his grip on second-place, but he insists the most important thing is to keep Nozal in the golden jersey all the way to Madrid.

“Nozal had a so-so day and we only lost 1:10, so it’s been a very good day for the team,” said Galdeano, who came through 14th at 1:13 back. “We are optimistic now and it’s been a good day for us. I may have to sacrifice my second-place position because Heras will keep attacking and I will have to stay and help Nozal. But the most important thing is that the team wins the Vuelta. Of course, I would like to keep my second place, but in these moments you have to think about the team.”

Nozal is feeling more confident as well, knowing he can count on his ONCE teammates on the Sierra Nevada climb that isn’t nearly as steep as La Pandera.

Postal, in the meantime, is keeping on its best game face. Bruyneel said the team will keep attacking, just in case the untested Nozal cracks under the pressure of the leader’s jersey.

“We’ll just have to wait and see at Sierra Nevada. It’s not really an ideal climb to make up the difference because it’s not steep like Pandera or Angliru,” Bruyneel said. “We still have the climbing time trial at Abantos (stage 20), so we’ll keep attacking until the end.”

***

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Results

Preliminary Stage Results
Overall Below
1. Alejandro Valverde (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 4:20:39

2. Felix Cardenas (Col), Labarca-2 Cafe, s.t.

3. Roberto Heras (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, at 0:02

4. Oscar Sevilla (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, at 0:10

5. Miguel Martin Perdiguero (Sp), Domina Vacanze, at 0:56

6. Luis Perez (Sp), Cofidis, at 0:57

7. Michael Rasmussen (Dk), Rabobank, at 0:57

8. Manuel Beltran (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, at 0:57

9. Klaus MÖller (Dk), Milaneza – MSS, at 0:58

10. Unai Osa (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:02

11. Francisco Mancebo (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:12

12. Michele Scarponi (I), Domina Vacanze, 1:13

13. Txema Del Olmo (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 1:13

14. Igor Glez. Galdeano (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 1:13

15. Isidro Nozal (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 1:13

16. Iñigo Cuesta (Sp), Cofidis, 1:13

17. Santos Gonzalez (Sp), Domina Vacanze, 1:13

18. Aitor Osa (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:13

19. Félix Garcia Casas (Sp), Bianchi, 1:13

20. Leonardo Piepoli (I), iBanesto.com, 1:13

21. Marcos Serrano (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 1:21

22. Daniel Atienza (Sp), Cofidis, 1:50

23. Fabian Jeker (Swi), Milaneza – MSS, 1:56

24. Santiago Perez (Sp), Phonak, 2:03

25. Oscar Pereiro (Sp), Phonak, 2:03

26. Wladimir Belli (I), Lampre, 2:09

27. Juan Miguel Mercado (Sp), iBanesto.com, 2:14

28. Manuel Calvente (Sp), CSC, 2:24

29. Santiago Blanco (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:32

30. Roberto Laiseka (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 2:40

31. Iker Flores (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 2:40

32. Jorge Ferrio (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 2:59

33. Carlos Sastre (Sp), CSC, 3:41

34. Levy Leipheimer (USA), Rabobank, 3:41

35. Jose Luis Rebollo (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 3:52

36. Alberto Martinez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 3:52

37. Cristian Moreni (I), Alessio, 4:01

38. Benjamín Noval (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 4:13

39. Gonçalo Amorim (P), Milaneza – MSS, 4:38

40. Joan Horrach (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 4:38

41. David CaÑada (Sp), Quick Step-Davitamon, 4:59

42. Kyryl Pospyeyev (Ukr), Domina Vacanze, 5:03

43. David Lopez (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 5:18

44. José Luis Martinez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 5:38

45. Denis Lunghi (I), Alessio, 5:47

46. Pedro Cardoso (P), Milaneza – MSS, 6:07

47. Guido Trentin (I), Cofidis, 6:07

48. Joaquin Rodriguez (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 6:14

49. José Jufre (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 6:19

50. Carlos Garcia Quesada (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 7:10

51. Torsten Hiekmann (G), Telekom, 7:22

52. Angelo Lopeboselli (I), Cofidis, 7:47

53. Nicki Sorensen (Dk), CSC, 7:47

54. Francisco Cerezo (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 7:47

55. Simone Masciarelli (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 8:44

56. David Navas (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 8:46

57. David Etxebarria (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 8:46

58. Joaquin Lopez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 8:50

59. David Millar (GB), Cofidis, 8:59

60. Constantino Zaballa (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 9:23

61. Jurgen Van Goolen (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 10:42

62. Mario Aerts (B), Telekom, 10:42

63. Gustavo Otero (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 10:42

64. Kurt Van De Wouwer (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 10:42

65. Francisco Vila (Sp), Lampre, 10:42

66. Giovanni Lombardi (I), Domina Vacanze, 10:42

67. Renato Silva (P), Milaneza – MSS, 10:42

68. George Hincapie (USA), U.S. Postal Service, 10:42

69. Christian Werner (G), Telekom, 10:42

70. Gorka Gerrikagoitia (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 10:42

71. Patrick Sinkewitz (G), Quick Step-Davitamon, 10:42

72. Beat Zberg (Swi), Rabobank, 10:42

73. Francisco José Lara (Sp), Bianchi, 10:42

74. Pablo Lastras (Sp), iBanesto.com, 10:42

75. Juan José De Los Angeles (Sp), Fassa Bortolo, 10:42

76. Carlos Golbano (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 10:42

77. Oscar Laguna (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 10:42

78. Eladio Jimenez (Sp), iBanesto.com, 10:42

79. Angel Edo (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 10:42

80. Volodymir Gustov (Ukr), Fassa Bortolo, 10:50

81. Dario Frigo (I), Fassa Bortolo, 10:51

82. Domingo Sanchez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 11:09

83. Carlos Torrent (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 12:01

84. José Gutierrez (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 12:15

85. Rafael Casero (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 12:30

86. Christian Pepoli (I), Saeco, 12:30

87. Antonio Tauler (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 12:32

88. Alessandro Bertolini (I), Alessio, 12:32

89. Mariano Piccoli (I), Lampre, 14:39

90. Erik Zabel (G), Telekom, 14:39

91. Juan Manuel Garate (Sp), Lampre, 14:39

92. Bingen Fernandez (Sp), Cofidis, 14:39

93. Bert Grabsch (G), Phonak, 14:39

94. José Luis Rubiera (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, 14:39

95. Bobby Julich (USA), Telekom, 14:39

96. Pietro Zucconi (Swi), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 14:39

97. Nacor Burgos (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 14:39

98. Stephan Schreck (G), Telekom, 14:39

99. Gorka Gonzalez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 14:39

100. Sven Montgomery (Swi), Fassa Bortolo, 14:39

101. Bram Tankink (Nl), Quick Step-Davitamon, 14:39

102. Iñaki Isasi (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 14:39

103. Pedro Horrillo (Sp), Quick Step-Davitamon, 14:39

104. David Latasa (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 14:39

105. Gorka Arrizabalaga (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 14:39

106. Serguei Ivanov (Rus), Fassa Bortolo, 14:45

107. Filippo Simeoni (I), Domina Vacanze, 16:06

108. Juan Fuentes (Sp), Saeco, 18:17

109. David De La Fuente (Sp), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 18:29

110. Francisco Cabello (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 18:36

111. José Luis Arrieta (Sp), iBanesto.com, 18:36

112. Dmitri Fofonov (Kaz), Cofidis, 18:36

113. Mikel Pradera (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 18:36

114. Angel Vicioso (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 18:36

115. Jan Boven (Nl), Rabobank, 18:36

116. Unai Etxebarria (Vz), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 18:39

117. Michael Barry (CAN), U.S. Postal Service, 19:26

118. Floyd Landis (USA), U.S. Postal Service, 19:28

119. Stefano Casagranda (I), Alessio, 19:51

120. Karsten Kroon (Nl), Rabobank, 20:16

121. Addy Engels (Nl), Rabobank, 20:44

122. Fabrizio Guidi (I), Bianchi, 20:51

123. Paulo Barroso (P), Milaneza – MSS, 23:29

124. Igor Pugaci (MDA), Saeco, 23:29

125. José Garcia Acosta (Sp), iBanesto.com, 23:29

126. Jesus Maria Manzano (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 23:29

127. Steven De Jongh (Nl), Rabobank, 23:29

128. Pedro Diaz Lobato (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 23:29

129. Ronald Mutsaars (Nl), Rabobank, 23:29

130. Gonzalo Bayarri (Sp), Phonak, 23:29

131. Simone Bertoletti (I), Lampre, 23:29

132. Gianpaolo Mondini (I), Domina Vacanze, 23:29

133. Patrick Calcagni (Swi), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 23:29

134. Michael Sandstod (Dk), CSC, 23:29

135. Tom Boonen (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 23:29

136. Thomas Bruun (Dk), CSC, 23:29

137. Giampaolo Cheula (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 23:29

138. Gianluca Sironi (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 23:29

139. Benoit Joachim (Lux), U.S. Postal Service, 23:29

140. Jörg Jaksche (G), ONCE – Eroski, 23:29

141. Niki Aebersold (Swi), Phonak, 23:29

142. Aitor Garmendia (Sp), Bianchi, 23:35

143. Raphael Schweda (G), Bianchi, 23:35

144. Ivan Herrero (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 23:35

145. Bekim Christensen (Dk), CSC, 23:35

146. Cesar Garcia Calvo (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 23:35

147. Mathew Hayman (Aus), Rabobank, 23:35

148. Thorsten Rund (G), Bianchi, 24:47

149. Daniele Righi (I), Lampre, 24:47

150. Steffan Wesemann (G), Telekom, 27:43

151. Guido Trenti (USA), Fassa Bortolo, 27:43

152. Matteo Tosatto (I), Fassa Bortolo, 27:43

153. Max Van Heeswijk (Nl), U.S. Postal Service, 27:43

154. Jan Hruska (Cz), ONCE – Eroski, 27:43

155. Alessandro Petacchi (I), Fassa Bortolo, 27:43

156. Francisco Gutierrez (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 27:43

157. Fred Rodriguez (USA), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 27:43

158. Alberto Vinale (I), Alessio, 27:43

159. Angelo Furlan (I), Alessio, 27:43

160. Peter Luttenberger (A), CSC, 27:43

161. Matthew White (Aus), U.S. Postal Service, 27:43

162. Germán Nieto (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 27:43

163. José Maestre (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 27:43

164. Alexandre Usov (Blr), Phonak, 27:43

165. Rubens Bertogliati (Swi), Lampre, 27:50

Overall
1. Isidro Nozal (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 50:01:40

2. Igor Glez. Galdeano (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 3:03

3. Roberto Heras (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, 4:02

4. Manuel Beltran (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, 5:23

5. Alejandro Valverde (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 6:37

6. Francisco Mancebo (Sp), iBanesto.com, 7:11

7. Michael Rasmussen (Dk), Rabobank, 8:28

8. Luis Perez (Sp), Cofidis, 8:33

9. Unai Osa (Sp), iBanesto.com, 9:59

10. Santos Gonzalez (Sp), Domina Vacanze, 10:59

11. Felix Cardenas (Col), Labarca-2 Cafe, 11:23

12. Michele Scarponi (I), Domina Vacanze, 11:48

13. Marcos Serrano (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 13:36

14. Oscar Sevilla (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 13:45

15. Félix Garcia Casas (Sp), Bianchi, 15:20

16. Txema Del Olmo (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 16:32

17. Iker Flores (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 17:36

18. Oscar Pereiro (Sp), Phonak, 18:22

19. Dario Frigo (I), Fassa Bortolo, 18:28

20. Guido Trentin (I), Cofidis, 25:47

21. José Jufre (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 33:30

22. Iñigo Cuesta (Sp), Cofidis, 40:40

23. Manuel Calvente (Sp), CSC, 47:08

24. Leonardo Piepoli (I), iBanesto.com, 47:30

25. Gonçalo Amorim (P), Milaneza – MSS, 49:11

26. Aitor Osa (Sp), iBanesto.com, 49:35

27. Joaquin Rodriguez (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 51:39

28. Carlos Sastre (Sp), CSC, 55:34

29. Christian Werner (G), Telekom, 56:25

30. Constantino Zaballa (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 58:04

31. José Gutierrez (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 58:07

32. Joan Horrach (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 1:00:06

33. Alberto Martinez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 1:00:52

34. David Etxebarria (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 1:02:07

35. Pedro Cardoso (P), Milaneza – MSS, 1:03:59

36. Eladio Jimenez (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:07:16

37. Kyryl Pospyeyev (Ukr), Domina Vacanze, 1:07:20

38. Gorka Gonzalez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 1:08:05

39. Klaus MÖller (Dk), Milaneza – MSS, 1:08:29

40. Jurgen Van Goolen (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 1:08:51

41. Daniel Atienza (Sp), Cofidis, 1:09:19

42. Miguel Martin Perdiguero (Sp), Domina Vacanze, 1:11:48

43. Wladimir Belli (I), Lampre, 1:16:06

44. Carlos Torrent (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:18:21

45. David Latasa (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 1:23:14

46. Denis Lunghi (I), Alessio, 1:28:24

47. Pablo Lastras (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:29:50

48. Juan Manuel Garate (Sp), Lampre, 1:30:25

49. Jorge Ferrio (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:31:55

50. Renato Silva (P), Milaneza – MSS, 1:33:18

51. Cristian Moreni (I), Alessio, 1:33:44

52. Gorka Gerrikagoitia (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 1:33:47

53. Francisco Vila (Sp), Lampre, 1:33:52

54. Unai Etxebarria (Vz), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 1:34:01

55. George Hincapie (USA), U.S. Postal Service, 1:35:44

56. Benjamín Noval (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 1:37:19

57. Jose Luis Rebollo (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 1:38:53

58. David Lopez (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 1:38:58

59. Carlos Garcia Quesada (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 1:40:08

60. Volodymir Gustov (Ukr), Fassa Bortolo, 1:40:29

61. David CaÑada (Sp), Quick Step-Davitamon, 1:41:18

62. José Luis Martinez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:41:29

63. Kurt Van De Wouwer (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 1:42:23

64. Domingo Sanchez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:42:47

65. Patrick Sinkewitz (G), Quick Step-Davitamon, 1:42:52

66. Peter Luttenberger (A), CSC, 1:43:05

67. Mario Aerts (B), Telekom, 1:43:14

68. Michael Barry (CAN), U.S. Postal Service, 1:44:08

69. Juan Miguel Mercado (Sp), iBanesto.com, 1:44:11

70. Santiago Perez (Sp), Phonak, 1:44:29

71. José Luis Rubiera (Sp), U.S. Postal Service, 1:45:06

72. Benoit Joachim (Lux), U.S. Postal Service, 1:45:31

73. Levy Leipheimer (USA), Rabobank, 1:46:11

74. Floyd Landis (USA), U.S. Postal Service, 1:48:48

75. Carlos Golbano (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:49:21

76. Bingen Fernandez (Sp), Cofidis, 1:51:09

77. Rafael Casero (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:51:47

78. Bert Grabsch (G), Phonak, 1:51:53

79. Angel Edo (Sp), Milaneza – MSS, 1:52:08

80. Erik Zabel (G), Telekom, 1:52:08

81. Angel Vicioso (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 1:53:19

82. Joaquin Lopez (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 1:56:58

83. Nicki Sorensen (Dk), CSC, 1:57:21

84. Fabrizio Guidi (I), Bianchi, 1:57:36

85. Fabian Jeker (Swi), Milaneza – MSS, 1:58:03

86. Giovanni Lombardi (I), Domina Vacanze, 1:58:08

87. Francisco José Lara (Sp), Bianchi, 1:58:38

88. Torsten Hiekmann (G), Telekom, 1:59:14

89. David Navas (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:01:22

90. Tom Boonen (B), Quick Step-Davitamon, 2:02:07

91. Francisco Cerezo (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 2:02:35

92. Angelo Lopeboselli (I), Cofidis, 2:03:00

93. José Luis Arrieta (Sp), iBanesto.com, 2:03:53

94. Santiago Blanco (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:04:24

95. Mariano Piccoli (I), Lampre, 2:05:04

96. Raphael Schweda (G), Bianchi, 2:05:28

97. José Garcia Acosta (Sp), iBanesto.com, 2:05:29

98. Iñaki Isasi (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 2:07:22

99. Cesar Garcia Calvo (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 2:07:32

100. Roberto Laiseka (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 2:08:37

101. Beat Zberg (Swi), Rabobank, 2:08:49

102. Jesus Maria Manzano (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 2:09:07

103. Stephan Schreck (G), Telekom, 2:09:37

104. Gorka Arrizabalaga (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 2:10:04

105. Francisco Cabello (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 2:10:08

106. Bram Tankink (Nl), Quick Step-Davitamon, 2:12:13

107. Oscar Laguna (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:13:06

108. Juan José De Los Angeles (Sp), Fassa Bortolo, 2:14:14

109. Bobby Julich (USA), Telekom, 2:15:55

110. Alessandro Bertolini (I), Alessio, 2:16:31

111. Addy Engels (Nl), Rabobank, 2:17:26

112. Serguei Ivanov (Rus), Fassa Bortolo, 2:18:04

113. Gustavo Otero (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 2:18:05

114. Antonio Tauler (Sp), Kelme – Costa Blanca, 2:18:28

115. Pedro Horrillo (Sp), Quick Step-Davitamon, 2:18:35

116. Dmitri Fofonov (Kaz), Cofidis, 2:20:37

117. Alessandro Petacchi (I), Fassa Bortolo, 2:21:45

118. Sven Montgomery (Swi), Fassa Bortolo, 2:22:04

119. Patrick Calcagni (Swi), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:23:33

120. Ivan Herrero (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 2:24:50

121. Jan Hruska (Cz), ONCE – Eroski, 2:25:03

122. Aitor Garmendia (Sp), Bianchi, 2:25:34

123. Karsten Kroon (Nl), Rabobank, 2:25:49

124. Jörg Jaksche (G), ONCE – Eroski, 2:25:49

125. Mikel Pradera (Sp), ONCE – Eroski, 2:26:10

126. Daniele Righi (I), Lampre, 2:26:52

127. Nacor Burgos (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:27:06

128. Giampaolo Cheula (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:27:54

129. Steffan Wesemann (G), Telekom, 2:28:03

130. Gianpaolo Mondini (I), Domina Vacanze, 2:28:22

131. Thorsten Rund (G), Bianchi, 2:28:31

132. Matthew White (Aus), U.S. Postal Service, 2:28:40

133. Pietro Zucconi (Swi), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:29:25

134. Fred Rodriguez (USA), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:29:54

135. Stefano Casagranda (I), Alessio, 2:30:11

136. Mathew Hayman (Aus), Rabobank, 2:30:14

137. David Millar (GB), Cofidis, 2:30:16

138. Juan Fuentes (Sp), Saeco, 2:35:02

139. Paulo Barroso (P), Milaneza – MSS, 2:35:11

140. Jan Boven (Nl), Rabobank, 2:36:39

141. Steven De Jongh (Nl), Rabobank, 2:38:32

142. Gianluca Sironi (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:38:51

143. Simone Masciarelli (I), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:38:56

144. Max Van Heeswijk (Nl), U.S. Postal Service, 2:39:23

145. Simone Bertoletti (I), Lampre, 2:40:11

146. Matteo Tosatto (I), Fassa Bortolo, 2:40:18

147. Pedro Diaz Lobato (Sp), Paternina – Costa De Almeria, 2:40:52

148. Bekim Christensen (Dk), CSC, 2:41:06

149. Alexandre Usov (Blr), Phonak, 2:41:39

150. Filippo Simeoni (I), Domina Vacanze, 2:43:17

151. Ronald Mutsaars (Nl), Rabobank, 2:44:27

152. Niki Aebersold (Swi), Phonak, 2:45:02

153. Angelo Furlan (I), Alessio, 2:46:30

154. Germán Nieto (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 2:49:50

155. Guido Trenti (USA), Fassa Bortolo, 2:50:47

156. Christian Pepoli (I), Saeco, 2:51:17

157. Michael Sandstod (Dk), CSC, 2:52:48

158. David De La Fuente (Sp), Sidermec Vini Caldirola, 2:52:55

159. Thomas Bruun (Dk), CSC, 2:53:20

160. Alberto Vinale (I), Alessio, 2:53:53

161. Gonzalo Bayarri (Sp), Phonak, 2:56:11

162. Rubens Bertogliati (Swi), Lampre, 2:57:39

163. Francisco Gutierrez (Sp), Labarca-2 Cafe, 2:58:43

164. Igor Pugaci (MDA), Saeco, 3:02:13

165. José Maestre (Sp), Colchon Relax – Fuenlabrada, 3:33:34

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