When the team time trial returned to the Tour schedule last year, someone wrote of the Nantes-St. Nazaire stage: "We no longer count the big ships that never returned to port, sunk along the way by relays too strong, or not strong enough!" The ONCE team -- clear winners last year (in 70km, they beat U.S. Postal by 46 seconds, Telekom by 1:26, Crédit Agricole by 1:32 and Rabobank by 2:12) -- finished the Tour de France utterly exhausted, while their Spanish rivals, Kelme, Festina and Banesto, came back into the picture and took the first three places in the final team classification. How can
Stage 6 starts in the center of Commercy, which the Tour is discovering for the first time. A rolling start occurs five minutes later, followed by the Void-Vacon hill at the 10th kilometer, and a long trek across the Meuse, Meurthe-et-Moselle and Vosges regions. Certainly, the stage is set, but we know nothing of the strength and the standings of the principal players. Because on this day after the team time trial, like the day after a party, it’s time to take stock -- the optimists find the bottle half-full, the pessimists judge it to be half-empty. Reading the general classification is
Nothing has changed on the face of the Tour, and the questions that arose yesterday still arise today: Who is in command, who has lost time, who wants to hold on and who wants to do it over? In other words, what remains of the team time trial -- which was presented as the Tour’s first big showdown? Without the ability to foresee the placings, we can still make the following statement: This new stage is short (162.5km); it plays out on terrain that begins to show some elevation, since it connects the Col du Kreuzweg at kilometer 48, the Col de Fouchy at kilometer 67, the Haut-de-Ribeauvillé
Lance Armstrong became only the second American to win the Tour of Switzerland, 14 years after Andy Hampsten took the second of his consecutive victories. In Thursday's final stage, Armstrong finished safely in the main pack, some three minutes behind a five-man break that resulted in a stage win for Oskar Camenzind of Lampre-Daikin. Camenzind was defending champion of the Swiss tour, but this year played a support role to teammate Gillberto Simoni, who finshed second overall, 1:02 behind Armstrong. To win the 176km stage 10, out and back from Lausanne, Camenzind escaped with Frenchmen
Would they already need to take a breather? In any case, on paper, the 222.5km between Colmar and Pontarlier evoke what we call the "stages of transition" — in other words, stages that should just exist to move the race between the more important stages, and so not be a threat to the team leaders. In some way, St. Omer–Boulogne-sur-Mer, Calais–Antwerp, Huy–Verdun, Commercy–Strasbourg, Pontarlier–Aix-les-Bains, Pau–Lavaur and Brive–Montluçon also fall into that category this year. It remains, though, that once on the road, maps tend to merge; the history of cycling doesn’t place less
While Lance Armstrong rode in for the final victory at the Tour of Switzerland on Thursday, one of his possible Tour de France rivals won the Tour of Catalonia in Spain on the final day of the race. ONCE’s Joseba Beloki, third in last year’s Tour de France, won the last-stage time trial to capture the Catalonia title in Alt de la Rabassa, Spain, on Thursday, beating out teammate Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano and Coast’s Fernando Escartin for the overall victory. Beloki was the only rider to crack the 34 minute barrier on the 13.9km uphill time trial on the Col de Rabassa, with a time of 33:47,
We finally notice it once it enters its second week: this Tour de France is not like the others, and even if it does not claim, with its 3462km, to be the shortest in history (the first editions, almost a century ago, were less than 2500km), it nevertheless equates to a rather low average stage distance. Therefore, since the team time trial, the succession of fairly short stages, multiplying the number of stops, creates the impression that we are postponing, day by day, the head-on collision with the race’s core. A second reading would lead us to believe that the organizers are controlling
Results from urine and blood samples provided by Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and the rest of his US Postal team at last year's Tour de France will not be released for "at least another month", prosecutors in Paris announced Thursday. The decision means that any remaining suspicion surrounding the American team will have to be allayed until after this year's 88th Tour de France which starts in Dunkirk on July 7 and ends in Paris on July 29. "The results from tests made on the urine and blood samples provided by the US Postal team in last year's Tour de France are not
Return to the mountainsSince this morning, they are no longer the same, and since we must write what they have become in less than a night, we will portray them as tense, nervous, irritable, distrustful and even elusive, which a psychologist would translate into a simple formula: The racers are scared! Yes, from the first to the last, from the smallest to the biggest, from Jacky Durand who still keeps his good mood, to those who have proven themselves in the mountains -- Lance Armstrong, Jan Ullrich, Roberto Heras and Francesco Casagrande -- all are apprehensive of this day that brings to
George Hincapie is no stranger to the Tour de France. The popular American racer rode his first Tour in 1996 with Motorola when he was just 23, and he has been a fixture at the July race ever since. In his first year, Hincapie had a bad crash and didn’t finish, but he has made steady progress in each of the following years. In 1998, the spring classics specialist had one of his best Tours from an individual standpoint, narrowly missing a chance to wear the leader’s yellow jersey after featuring in a winning breakaway on stage 3. The next two years, however, weren’t about individual goals.
The last three years have presented American Tour de France hopeful Bobby Julich with a long and rocky road. As a member of the French outfit Cofidis in 1998, Julich surprised nearly everyone with a third-place finish, but crashes and illness have taken their toll on the man from Colorado ever since. At last year’s Tour, Julich was a glum figure, out of the headlines until Jeroen Blijlevens decided to punch him on the Champs Elysées. But if memories of that, and the year before when Julich crashed out of the Tour in the stage 8 time trial, were on his mind this past March, it didn’t show.
Telekom’s Erik Zabel won the ninth stage of the Tour of Switzerland on Wednesday, 166.8km between Sion and Lausanne, Switzerland. Zabel beat out Gerolsteiner’s Saulius Ruskis and Domo-Farm Frites’ Robbie McEwen in the mass field sprint finish. U.S. Postal Service’s Lance Armstrong retained the leader’s yellow jersey with only one stage to go. Zabel profitted from the work of the Saeco, Domo and Cofidis teams who chased down lone escapee Bert Grabsch (Phonak) before the finish. Grabsch had escaped along with Rolf Huser (Coast) in the town of Martigny, but the German dropped Huser on the one
Twenty-five-year-old Ernie Lechuga picked out a true classic for his first big win since coming back from testicular cancer last year. The DeFeet-LeMond rider added his name to the long list of top riders who have won the Nevada City Classic when he beat out Jelly Belly’s Damon Kluck in the Northern California race, June 24. "So many famous people have won this race, and I’m hoping one day I’ll be one of those famous riders," said Lechuga, whose co-sponsor Greg LeMond is one of those former winners. Lechuga was well on his way three years ago, as one of the top under-23 riders in the U.S.,
Italian Daniele de Paoli (Mercatone Uno) took a solo win at the seventh stage of the Tour of Catalonia, 1:20 ahead of Spaniards Fernando Escartin (Coast) and Joseba Beloki (ONCE). Beloki’s ONCE teammate Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano retained the leader’s white jersey. On the queen stage of the tour, passing over four passes in the Pyrenees before the finish atop Els Cortals de Encancamp, de Paoli escaped just 29km into the stage along with Andreas Kloden (Telekom), Santiagor Botero (Kelme-Costa Blanca), Roberto Laiseka (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Pavel Tonkov (Mercury-Viatel) and Daniel Clavero
Several of the major players in the sprints changed teams this year, something that is sure to shake up the dynamics of the Tour’s field sprint finishes. But five-time green jersey winner Erik Zabel hasn’t gone anywhere, and it’s this German rocket who tops our list of the Tour’s best sprinters. 1. Erik Zabel (G), 31, Telekom Until last year, Zabel had won four straight green points jerseys, but hadn’t won a Tour stage since 1998. Perhaps the arrival of leadout man Gianmatteo Fagnini -- formerly Mario Cipollini’s right-hand man -- made the difference: Zabel won the second-to-last stage last
Ivan Gotti (Alessio) took the win at stage 6 of the Tour of Catalonia while Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano (ONCE) took over the race leader’s jersey from teammate Marcos Serrano after the hot, mountainous 184km stage between Les Borges Blaques and Boi Taull in Spain. Gotti was part of a dozen-rider break that escaped 42km into the race. The break would gain up to four minutes as it headed toward the final climb at Boi Taull, with grades of 12 percent. There, Gotti and Spaniard Aitor Kintana (Jazztel) would attack, while behind, the rest of the break began to get caught by the remnants of the
Two-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong put himself in a commanding position Tuesday as he won the eighth stage of the Tour of Switzerland, a 25.5km uphill time trial to Crans-Montana. The 29-year-old American, who will be bidding for a third successive Tour de France triumph next month, took the overall leader's yellow jersey off Italian Wladimir Belli (Fassa Bortolo), who could finish in only the fifth fastest time. Armstrong now leads Giro d’Italia champion Gilberto Simoni, second on the stage, by 1:02 overall. Simoni was 1:25 back of Armstrong on the stage, followed by Tyler
"Tuft by name, tough by nature," was overall winner Henk Vogels' comment about GP Cycliste de Beauce final stage winner Svein Tuft (Team Canada). While Tuft took stage 7, Vogels was able to give Mercury-Viatel its first ever win at Beauce after Saturn was unable to exert enough pressure to crack its rivals. Mercury had good reason to worry - last year they had Scott Moninger in the lead going into the final stage, only to lose it all when they succumbed to relentless attacks by other teams. This year the course seemed custom made for such a situation; 15 laps of an 11km circuit with 2.5km
Spain’s Oscar Laguna (Relax-Fuenlabrada), soloed in for victory at the fifth stage of the Tour of Catalonia on Monday, coming in 10 seconds ahead of New Zealander Julian Dean of the U.S. Postal Service. Laguna was part of an eight-man breakaway group, and the Spanish rider escaped 12km from the finish to capture the victory, while ONCE’s Marcus Serrano retained the leader’s white jersey. On the flat, 178km transitional stage from Granada to Vila Seca, the breakaway group attained a maximum lead of more than nine minutes, which made Laguna the virtual leader on the road. However, Serrano’s
Italian rider Stefano Garzelli (Mapei-Quick Step) came home alone in Naters, Switzerland, after escaping for 135km to win Monday's 156.5km seventh stage of the Tour of Switzerland from Locarno. The 27-year-old, who won the 2000 Giro d’Italia, crossed the line 4:22 ahead of compatriot and teammate Michele Bartoli (Mapei-Quick Step), while Czech Tomas Konecny (Domo-Farm Frites) was third 7:27 behind and just ahead of American George Hincapie (U.S. Postal Service). Fassa Bortolo’s Wladimir Belli retained his one second overall lead over this year's Giro champion, Gilberto Simoni
Without incident. That was my biggest goal in the HP Women's challenge this year. Certainly I had people tell me otherwise. "That's a pretty small goal," I heard, or "30th place isn't worth defending." Well, it is to me. This is my fourth consecutive try at this race. The first one saw me starved, dehydrated and hooked up to an IV on day two. The second was supposed to be revenge. It was perfect until a flat on the last day in the first kilometer of the race forced me to chase all day and lose 20 spots. That was pure heartbreak. Last year, well, that crash was famous enough that the
Scott Moninger won the sixth stage of the Grand Prix Cycliste de Beauce stage race on Saturday, moving into second overall behind his Mercury teammate Henk Vogels. Eugen Wacker (Mroz-Supradyn Witaminy) was second on the stage, half a second back, and John Lieswyn (7Up-Colorado Cyclist) was third. The sixth stage was a 15km individual time trial in the town of St Georges de Beauce, and Moninger was the favorite, having won the same stage in 2000. "I really wanted to try to move into second overall before tomorrow's final stage. It is crucial for us to have two riders in good position, so
Tour de France contender Joseba Beloki (ONCE-Eroski) won the fourth stage of the Tour of Catalonia in Spain on Sunday, while his teammate Marcos Serrano re-took the leader’s white jersey from Santos Gonzalez. Beloki finished in front of Oscar Sevilla (Kelme-Costa Blanca) and Miguel Angel Martin on stage 4, a short, nervous and hilly trip over second- and third-category climbs around Barcelona. Sevilla was the instigator of an attack on the final climb, 15km from the finish, and was followed only by Beloki. The two crested the climb with about a 30 second lead, but from that point, Beloki
The 2001 HP Women’s Challenge finished in Boise, Idaho on Sunday in a style reflective the way this race has gone over the past 12 days: the Saturn women’s team in control, especially when it counted. Finishing the day’s 55.2-mile final stage from Middleton to Boise, Saturn’s Ina-Yoko Teutenberg grabbed her second stage win of the race while teammate Lyne Bessette cruised across the line in the field having secured a nearly five-minute lead in the final general classification. The Saturn team in general and Bessette in particular had been in charge ever since the first stage of this 13-stage
Russia's Sergeui Ivanov, of the Fassa Bortolo team, won a sprint finish to take Sunday's 174km sixth stage of the Tour of Switzerland, which started and finished in Mendrisio, Switzerland. Ivanov came from behind to cross the line in 4:00:27, just ahead of Kazakhstan's Alexandre Vinokourov (Telekom), France's Laurent Jalabert (CSC-World Online) and Switzerland's Alexandre Moos (KIA-Swiss) in the sprint to the line. Ivanov’s Italian teammate Wladimir Belli, who finished in 11th position at five seconds behind the leaders, retained the overall leader's yellow jersey with a one-second advantage
World champion Romans Vainsteins (Domo-Farm Frites) won the third stage of the Tour of Catalonia in a sprint finish at the end of a 148.6km day between Blanes and L’Hospitalet de Llobregat on Saturday, while ONCE’s Santos Gonzalez took the leader’s white jersey from teammate Marcos Serrano. Finishing 22nd on the stage, Gonzalez was credited with the same overall time as Serrano at the end of the day, but took the race lead by virtue of his standing in the overall points classification. Meanwhile, Spaniards Roberto Heras (U.S. Postal Service) and José Maria Jimenez (iBanesto.com) were caught
“Everyone said that the Dutchies were supposed to win the criterium,” Marielle van Scheppingen said after the 12th stage of the HP Women’s Challenge, “so we felt some pressure to do it… and we did.” Scheppingen (Dutch National) was part of a winning break of six that formed about two-thirds of the way into the 34.7-mile State House Criterium, a fixture at the 18-year-old women’s stage race through Idaho. Race leader Lyne Bessette (Saturn) was an early factor in the success of the small group. Not only did the 26-year-old Canadian in the blue race leader’s jersey power the group for two laps,
Australian Henk Vogels (Mercury-Viatel) kept his yellow jersey for another day at the Grand Prix Cycliste de Beauce, despite finishing five minutes and three seconds behind stage 5 winner Philippe Koehler of Mapei-Quick Step. Koehler barely managed to hold off Canadian national champion Czeslaw Lukaszewicz (Team Canada) in a two-man mountain top finish to take the stage; his first win as a professional racer. The 170km fifth stage is considered the most difficult of the seven-stage, 959km race. The stage culminates with a 5.5km climb to the Mont Megantic observatory, atop the highest paved
Russian veteran Dmitri Konyshev of the Fassa Bortolo team came home alone after the 220.6km fifth stage of the Tour of Switzerland on Saturday. The 35-year-old veteran came in 1:57 ahead of Italians Gilberto Simoni (Lampre-Daikin) and Wladimir Belli (Fassa Bortolo) and Spain's Manuel Beltran (Mapei-Quick Step) following the run from Widnau to St. Gothard. Belli, Konyshev's teammate, took the overall race leader's yellow jersey but is just one second clear of Tour of Italy winner Simoni. Two-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong of the United States finished seventh at 2:34 behind to
The list of potential winners for the Grand Prix Cycliste de Beauce has been reduced to 21 riders from the 118 who started stage 4 Thursday morning. The reason? Only 21 riders were in the break that finished over 33 minutes ahead of the peloton, a margin so great that the entire field was within a couple of minutes of missing the time cut. David McKenzie (Ficonseils-RCC Conseils Assurance) gave his team its first win of the season by outsprinting Artour Babaitsev (Team Nurnberger) and Eric Wohlberg (Saturn), but every one of the breakaway members is virtually assured of finishing in the
Telekom’s Alexandre Vinokourov won the 144km fourth stage of the Tour of Switzerland from Baar to Wildhaus on Friday, moving into second place overall and closing to within 14 seconds of race leader Gianluca Bortolami (Tacconi Sport-Vini Caldirola). The winner of the Tour of Germany, Vinokourov soloed in nine seconds ahead of Giro d’Italia winner Gilberto Simoni (Lampre-Daikin) and France’s Laurent Jalabert (CSC-World Online). The 144km stage finished with a 13km, second-category climb into Wildhaus, and that’s where things blew apart. After a 115km breakaway by Christian Heule (Post Swiss)
Domo-Farm Frites’ Max Van Heeswijk won the second stage of the Tour of Catalonia in Spain, a 173.5km day ending in a sprint finish in Blanes on Friday. ONCE’s Marcos Serrano retained the race leader’s jersey. Van Heeswijk beat out Telekom’s Danilo Hondo, winner of two stages at this year’s Giro d’Italia, with Sven Teutenberg (Festina) in third, and the rest of the peloton, including Serrano, just behind. Friday’s transitional stage saw a long breakaway from Fabio Roscioli (Jazztel), who attacked just after the start and gained almost 10 minutes on the peloton, with Simone Masciarelli
Saturn's Lyne Bessette further tightened her grip on the overall lead at the HP Women's Challenge in Idaho as she finished on top in Friday's 13.3-mile Emmett to Firebird time trial, gaining nearly a full minute on (G),'s Judith Arndt, the woman in second place overall. Bessette covered the course in 23:13, beating Office Depot's Jeannie Longo by 24 seconds and AutoTrader.com's Katrina Berger by 35. Arndt, who started in second-to-last position, two minutes ahead of Bessette finished fourth, covering the course in 24:07. After a short climb out of Emmett on "Freeze Out Hill," riders faced
Henk Vogels (Mercury) has been to Canada exactly twice: The first time was in 1994 when, as a member of the Australian team, he won gold at the Commonwealth Games in Victoria, BC, in the team time trial. The second is his current trip to the GP Cycliste de Beauce, where he won Wednesday’s third stage and took the overall lead in the race. Obviously, Canada agrees with him…. The third stage, at 190km, was the longest of the race. A single loop around the town of Lac Etchemin, it promised long rolling climbs of 7-8 percent, and strong winds. With less than a minute separating the first 35
Italian Gianluca Bortolami (Tacconi Sport-Vini Caldirola) took the overall race lead at the Tour of Switzerland after scoring the stage win in a two-up finishing sprint with breakaway companion Peter Wrolich (Gerolsteiner). Bortolami’s win came on the third stage of the Swiss race, 162.7km from Reinach to Baar. Australian Robbie McEwen (Domo-Farm Frites) won the field sprint for third, 2:53 behind Bortolami. Bortolami and Wrolich escaped at the 70km mark, from a group of six that also included Laurent Jalabert (CSC-World Online), and at one point extended their advantage to 9:19 over the
The ONCE team of Joseba Beloki and Jorg Jaksche took command on day 1 of the Tour of Catalonia on Thursday, winning the stage 1 team time trial and putting Spaniard Marcos Serrano into the leader’s white jersey. Beloki and Jaksche put themselves into good position for the overall, as their ONCE team finished the difficult 20.5km stage around Sabadell 47 seconds ahead of the Festina team of Angel Casero and 53 seconds ahead of Kelme and Oscar Sevilla. Among the other favorites, iBanesto.com’s Jose-Maria Jimenez lost 58 seconds, Telekom’s Andreas Kloden 1:08, and the Crédit Agricole squad of
Ina Teutenberg flew into the finish of the 10th stage of the HP Women's Challenge Thursday at the head of this 12-day stage race's first full field sprint, adding yet another win to a race that has been almost completely dominated by her Saturn team. Saturn, which has pretty much controlled the race since the start more than a week ago, continues to protect Lyne Bessette’s very substantial 3:20 overall lead over second-place Judith Arndt (German national). It was nearly 100 degrees and almost 100 miles at the HP Women's Challenge on Thursday. And while the long trip from Twin Falls to
There is no more fitting way to end a race against the clock than on a drag racing track, where you can see the seconds ticking off as you take a lap. Though certainly not the fastest vehicles on the Firebird Raceway outside Boise, the usual speedsters turned in the quickest runs of the day. I hate time trailing…more than anything in the world. I love climbing though, and this course held a little more water for me as it turned up the famous "Freeze-Out Hill", known more for its inclusion in the final stage into Boise. I thought of it as my only hope. I thought it would be good for
Mercury's Gord Fraser ended his longest winless streak in four years on Tuesday in convincing style, taking the second stage in the Grand Prix Cycliste de Beauce - Canada's only UCI-sanctioned stage race. Canadian Charles Dionne (7UP-Colorado Cyclist) finished third in the stage, behind Robert Foster of Team Nurnberger. Remegijus Lupeikis of Lithuania, riding for the Mroz-SupraDyn team, replaced his teammate Piotr Chmielewski in the overall leader's position by 1 second after receiving a time bonus during the stage. The 162km stage began in Charny, on the outskirts of Quebec City, and
Lance Armstrong retained his lead at the Tour of Switzerland Wednesday, after German Erik Zabel of Telekom won the opening road stage, 178km from Europa Park (Rust) to Basel. In a mass sprint finish, Zabel outsped Italian Paolo Bettini of Mapei-Quick Step and Saulius Ruskys of Team Gerolsteiner to take his 15th win of the season. Armstrong -- winner of Tuesday’s stage 1 time trial -- retained his overall lead by just three seconds, after Paris-Roubaix winner Servais Knaven of Domo-Farm Frites picked up a pair of two-second time bonus. The stage started in Rust, Germany, and passed through
Former Festina rider Richard Virenque has hit back at claims alleging he bribed Germany's former Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich to allow him to win a stage in the 1997 Tour de France, while Ullrich said Wednesday he is "sick and tired" of being implicated in "unproven" indirect claims that he took drugs and accepted bribes.The bribery claims were made by former Festina team manager Bruno Roussel, who also claimed that other offers made by Virenque to riders who could have helped him win the Tour in 1997 were laughed off.In his tell-all book "Tour of Vices," which went on sale
Editor's note: Jen Dial, riding as a teammate of Jeannie Longo on Office Depot at the HP Women's Challenge, is providing an inside-the-race look at the biggest women's stage race in America. The latest from her diary: The warm ups are getting shorter as the days get longer and hotter here at the HP Women's Challenge. It's the time in the race when everyone has had a great day and a not-so-great day. Everyone is tired, and people become easily amused and excited by things other than the bike race. As we left Twin Falls on the way to Buhl, Idaho, Trout Capital of America, we crossed a
Lyne Bessette took advantage of a small opportunity in the closing kilometers of Wednesday’s Twin Falls to Buhl stage of the HP Women’s Challenge and scored her first stage win of this 12-day tour through Idaho. Overall race leader since last week’s head-to-head time trial, Bessette has played her hand carefully while racking up an advantage of more than three minutes on second-place Judith Arndt. “It’s nice,” said Bessette, the winner of this year’s Tour de l’Aude. “Usually if I win a tour, I don’t end up winning a stage, so when I saw the opportunity, I took it.” Bessette finished seconds
Poland's Piotr Chmielewski (Mroz) took the lead after the first stage of the Grand Prix Cycliste de Beauce on Monday evening. The 7-day, 8-stage race is the only UCI sanctioned race (2.4) in Canada. The first stage followed a unique format, with each team covering a 13.3 km circuit in a team time trial formation. The race was staged around the historic Plains of Abraham in Quebec City. The fastest team then nominated a member who would wear the yellow leader's jersey for the next stage. Chmielewski's Mroz team finished 8 seconds ahead of the Saturn squad and 19 seconds in front of
Lance Armstrong began this year’s Tour of Switzerland in fine form on Tuesday, winning the 7.9km prologue time trial in the German town of Rust. Armstrong posted a time of 9:44.22 through the streets of Rust, and only Frenchman Laurent Jalabert prevented a Postal Service sweep of the podium. Jalabert was second in 9:49.36 followed by Armstrong teammates Tyler Hamilton and Viatcheslav Ekimov in third and fourth, respectively.
In an about-to-be-released book, former Festina team manager Bruno Roussel alleges that bribery among Tour de France rider was common practice when he was a manager. Roussel’s "Tour of vices" is due to be published on Wednesday, and the French newspaper Le Monde has been serializing the book.Roussel, who has admitted organizing doping allegedly for health reasons in his team before the Festina scandal erupted in 1998, claimed that former king of the mountains Richard Virenque had "bought" a stage victory from German rider Jan Ullrich in 1997.Roussel also said that Virenque's bribe offer
She may have been something of a surprise when she rode to a second-place finish, at U.S. road nationals in Redding, California this year, but Earthlink’s Amber Neben may have just pulled her last surprise performance. The 26-year-old mountain-bike racing immunologist is beginning to make a name for herself as a serious road racer, especially after chasing down a nearly successful break, and going to a solo win in Tuesday’s eighth stage of the HP Women’s Challenge in Idaho. Meanwhile Saturn’s Lyne Bessette maintains a tight hold on the overall lead of the Women’s Challenge, with a 3:13
Trixi Worrack of the German national team sprinted out of an elite group of leaders Monday to take the seventh stage of the 2001 HP Women’s Challenge as it finished atop a long climb up to southern Idaho’s Pomerelle ski area. The 19-year-old’s win did little to alter the overall standings of this race, with Saturn’s Lyne Bessette now leading by more than three minutes. But included in the group of top finishers was Worrack’s teammate Judith Arndt who has moved past Acca Due O’s Rasa Polikeviciute to take over second place. Worrack and Arndt were among a group of five, including Bessette,
Prime Alliance’s Jonas Carney won the Nature Valley criterium in St. Paul, Minnesota, on Sunday after a controversial finish to the 90-minute event. Carney topped Navigators’ Franky Van Haesebroucke and U.S. Postal Service’s Robbie Ventura in the downtown event, the second race in the Nature Valley Grand Prix, part of the Touchstone Energy Classic which included the U.S. elite track nationals in Blaine, Minnesota. Sunday’s event came down to a field-sprint finish, with the Navigators train leading the way on the final lap. Heading into the final turn, Carney dove to the inside, touching off
The Classique du Quebec is a one-day road race that was held Saturday as a lead-up event to the Grand Prix de Beauce, which begins Monday. The UCI ranked race was held around the island of Orleans, just outside the city of Quebec. Riders headed out from Quebec to complete two loops around the island before heading back to the city, for a total of 165 kilometers. On the second loop of the island a lead group of 14 formed, including Canadians Gord Fraser (Mercury), Dominique Perras (Team G.S. Ficonseils), Eric Wohlberg (Saturn), Czeslaw Lukaszewicz (Team Canada) and Mark Walters (Navigators),
Frenchman Christophe Moreau won the Dauphine Libere stage race, which finished in Chambery, France, on Sunday. The Frenchman took the win by a slim one-second margin over Mercury-Viatel’s Pavel Tonkov following the seventh and final stage. German Jens Voigt of the Credit Agricole team won the 125km stage between Vizille and Chambery. Voigt’s teammate, American Bobby Julich, finished third on the day, at 1:12. Moreau, fourth in last year's Tour de France, came out on top of tough seven-day race that saw five leaders. Moreau took the overall leader's blue-and-yellow jersey on Friday from
Australian Cadel Evans might have a future on the road. Volvo-Cannondale’s star of the World Cup mountain-bike circuit completed a surprising win at the Tour of Austria stage race Sunday. The 24-year-old Evans, riding for Saeco, took the lead in the fourth stage, which finished atop the Kitzbuhl Horn. The lanky Aussie made a solo attack to win that 154km stage by 25 seconds. Mapei rider Daniele Nardello won Sunday’s seventh and final stage, but Evans maintained his overall lead to take the win with a 47-second margin over Austrian Hans Peter Obwaller. Another mountain-bike racer, Italian
He did once say that "it ain't over till it's over," but the Saturn team is putting that old Yogi-ism to the test at the HP Women's Challenge. Until today, the 12-day Idaho stage race had been a two-woman contest between Saturn's Lyne Bessette and the venerable French champion Jeannie Longo, competing with a composite team, sponsored by Office Depot. But by the end of today's flat and wind-blown 80-mile stage – won by Saturn’s Petra Rossner – Longo was knocked back to tenth place overall, more than 11 minutes back and Bessette now enjoys a lead of more than two minutes over second-place Rasa
Spaniard Iban Mayo of Euskaltel-Euskadi won the sixth stage of the Dauphiné Libéré on Saturday. The 23-year-old, who scored his first major win in May at the Midi Libre, finished the 193km stage between Pontcharra and Briancon ahead of Mercruy-Viatel’s Pavel Tonkov and race leader Christophe Moureau of Festina. Moureau retains the leader’s jersey, one second ahead of Tonkov. American Jonathan Vaughters of the Credit Agricole team, winner of the stage 4 time trial, abandoned the race. Also abandoning was Scotsman David Millar of the Cofidis team. Millar had worn the leader’s jersey earlier
Luxembourg native Kim Kirchen of the Fassa Bortolo team scored a home stage win at the Tour of Luxembourg Saturday. American Fred Rodriguez of Domo-Farm Frites lost the overall lead to Dane Jorgen Bo Petersen of Team Fakta. Petersen finished the 102km stage fourth, 10 seconds behind Kirchen’s winning time of 2:11:49. Rodriguez will go into Sunday’s final stage second overall, 14 seconds behind Petersen.
Saturn's Lyne Bessette moved into the overall lead of the HP Women's Challenge as she beat race leader Jeannie Longo (Office Depot) in a short head-to-head time trial near the edge of the Sun Valley resort area Saturday morning. This style of stage is unique to the HP and a favorite of race director Jim Rabdau, pitting closely matched GC riders against one another in a side-by-side, no drafting time trial. Riders earn a five-second time bonus for beating her opponent and additional bonuses for catching riders who started 30 seconds ahead. Beginning with last place GC rider (who rode with a
The Dutch National Team’s Chantal Beltman sprinted out of a lead group of three to take a stage win at the HP Women’s Challenge Elkhorn Circuit Race Saturday. However, the big news of this fifth stage is that overall race leader Lyne Bessette (Saturn) was among that group of three that finished 1:20 ahead of the field and second-placed Jeannie Longo (Office Depot). Bessette had just moved into the leader’s jersey Saturday morning in a head-to-head time trial against Longo. As the 18-lap, 28.8-mile stage began on Saturday evening, Bessette enjoyed just a small 12-second advantage over the
Saturn's Frank McCormack was the winner of the Nature Valley Grand Prix Road Race on Saturday in Plainview, Minnesota. McCormack beat out two Navigators riders, Kirk O’Bee and Glen Mitchel, who took second and third respectively. The 102-mile NRC race was held on a 34-mile circuit one-and-a-half hours south of Minneapolis. The toughest part of the race was a pair of 1-mile climbs up a river bluff. Riders will be back in action on Sunday at the Nature Valley Grand Prix Criterium, which takes place on the grounds of the Minnesota state capitol in St. Paul.
“You know, I think I really like this stage,” said Alison Dunlap as she stood in the middle of the main street through downtown Ketchum, Idaho. She should like this stage, she’s now won it three times. Dunlap, riding for a composite squad sponsored by Boise Cascade Office Products, won the 62.3-mile Stanley to Ketchum road in a fashion similar to the way she’s done before: stay in the mix up Galena Pass, rejoin the leader or leaders, notch the speed up on the long downhill and then time her sprint perfectly. While Dunlap did her stuff, the two women atop the overall standings – Jeannie Longo
Think it's tough to finish a Tour stage? How about having to sit down and write down a recap of the day's action? We've got three Americans -- Tyler Hamilton, Fred Rodriguez and Kevin Livingston -- lined up to dish out daily snapshots of what it's like to ride the Tour. Our trio of riders will rotate through as they deliver same-day reports while the day's details are still fresh in their minds. And with the time change from Europe to North America, you could be reading reports before dinner, just as these guys are headed to bed. Dear Diary...indeed.
Britain's David Millar became the fourth race leader to lose the coveted yellow-and-blue jersey of the Dauphiné Libéré stage race in France on Friday. Frenchman Christophe Moreau, riding for Festina, did the honors of stealing the jersey after the 151km fifth stage between Romans and Grenoble. Moreau finished sixth on the day, 33 seconds behind stage winner Andrei Kivilev. The Cofidis rider from Kazakhstan won a sprint finish to grab his first professional stage win. Moreau’s overall lead is tenuous, as Mercury-Viatel’s Pavel Tonkov sits just one second behind Moreau. Millar has made
Volvo-Cannondale mountain-bike racer Cadel Evans impressed the road racing world with a win at the fourth stage of the Tour of Austria Thursday. Riding for Saeco-Cannondale, the 24-year-old showed good climbing form on the 154km stage that started in Bad Gasteinz and finished with a climb up to the Kitzbuhl Horn. Evans escaped with 3km to go and soloed in for the lead. He holds a 47 second lead over Austrian Peter Obwaller. In fifth overall is another mountain-bike pro, Dario Cioni of Italy.
Fred Rodriguez maintained his overall lead as Estonian Jaan Kirsipuu won the second stage of the Tour of Luxembourg Friday. Rodriguez, the Domo-Farm Frites rider who won the USPRO championships in Philadelphia June 10, is on a roll. He took the overall lead at Luxembourg when he won stage 1 on Thursday. Kirsipuu, riding for the AG2R team, won Friday’s 214km stage between Wormeldange and Beckerich in a sprint finish. Finishing second was Italian Alessandra Petacchi (Fassa Bortolo). Rodriguez holds a lead of 9 seconds over Frenchman Eddy Lembo of the Jean Delatour team. Bulgarian Ivaila
American Jonathan Vaughters won Thursday’s time trial stage at the Dauphiné Libéré stage race in France. The Credit Agricole rider from Colorado covered the 43km time trial between Beaumes-de-Venise and Valreas in southeastern France three seconds faster than second-place David Millar (Cofidis), who took the overall lead. Vaughters is now second overall, 20 seconds behind Millar. Millar, who wore the first yellow jersey of last year's Tour de France after winning the prologue, is determined to win the Dauphiné and maintain the kind of form he will need going into this year's Grande Boucle.
It’s a good day for Americans racing in Europe. Just four days after winning the USPRO Championship in Philadelphia, Fred Rodriguez won stage 1 of the Tour of Luxembourg on Thursday. The Domo-Farm Frites rider covered the 182km stage in 4:26:22, beating Frenchman Eddy Lembo (Jean Delatour) in a sprint finish. Friday’s 214km stage is considered the most difficult of the four-day stage race in the small country of Luxembourg.
Jeannie Longo has held on to her overall lead in the HP Women’s Challenge, but the 42-year-old French rider may be facing serious challenges from three riders -- Germany’s Judith Arndt, Rasa Polikeviciute (Acca Due O-Hewlett-Packard) and Saturn’s Kimberly Bruckner – who joined a winning break in the closing miles of the 58-mile Lowman to Stanley road race on Thursday. Arndt powered in to the sprint of the lead group of four that included Longo’s Office Depot teammate, Joan Wilson, the last member of a break that started just a few miles into this hilly and wind-blown stage near the Sawtooth
Editor’s note: Jen Dial, racing in the HP Women’s Challenge with the Office Depot Team, will be checking into VeloNews.com daily with her view from inside the race. After Wednesday’s stage 1, Jen "had tea’ with the one and only Jeannie Longo, who happens to be Jen’s teammate at the Idaho stage race. Jeannie Longo asked us to "stop by and have tea" after our massages. And why wouldn't we? After suffering all day in the wind and winning the opening stage of the Hewlett Packard Women's Challenge, she has plenty to celebrate. Obviously the celebration has to be such that everyone can race again
Marco Pantani will have his driver’s license confiscated and will be fined after being caught speeding, the Italian news agency ANSA reported Wednesday. The former Tour de France and Giro d'Italia winner was clocked at 118 mph on the E45 motorway Tuesday. Police temporarily gave him back the license so he could continue his journey to Rome and back to his Cesenatico home. Pantani, who made headlines last year when he lost control of his car and damaged a handful of others, could lose his license for one to three months.
Belgian champion Axel Merckx of the Domo-Farm Frites team took the overall leader's yellow-and-blue jersey at the Dauphiné Libéré stage race in France Wednesday. Merckx, the 28-year-old son of Eddy, who won Dauphiné 30 years ago, took over from Frenchman Laurent Roux after finishing 10th on the 184km stage between Guilherand-Granges and Carpentras. Venezuelan Unai Etxebarria won the stage, holding off a chase group led by Russian Denis Menchov of the iBanesto.com team. The chase group finished three seconds off Etxebarria's pace. American Jonathan Vaughters of the Credit Agricole team
The Saturn women’s team has had a run of things this season, dominating individual events, stage races and even the World Cup. 2001 has pretty much belonged to Saturn, save the occasional run-in with a French-speaking rider usually willing to take on the entire squad by herself. And that’s what happened on the opening day of the 2001 HP Women’s Challenge…. Nope, Genevieve Jeanson is back training in Arizona. This time it was Jeannie Longo. Longo, riding for a composite team sponsored by Office Depot, joined and then dominated a decisive early break in the 69.5-mile road race from Boise to
Jean Delatour rider Laurent Roux won the second stage of the Dauphiné Libéré in France Tuesday. Roux outsprinted Axel Merckx of the Domo-Farm Frites team to win the 170km race between Bron and Firminy. Roux takes over the overall lead, with a pad of seven seconds over Merckx. Swede Glen Magnusson, also a Domo-Farm Frites rider, is third overall, at 1:31. American Bobby Julich (Credit Agricole) finished 22nd Monday and sits 33rd overall, 1:58 off Roux’s time.
Fabian De Waele of the Lotto-Adecco team won the 227km first stage of the Dauphiné Libéré in Bron, France, on Monday. Prologue winner Didier Rous, a member of the Festina team ejected from the 1998 Tour de France for doping, retained the overall leader's jersey after winning Sunday's prologue. Rous now rides for the French Bonjour team. De Waele, a 26-year-old Belgian, won the stage in a sprint, holding off the challenges of Damien Nazon (Francaise des Jeux) and veteran Christophe Agnolutto (AG2R), who had tried to make a break for it on the final approach.
3:02 p.m. With half a mile to go Fred Rodriguez broke away from the lead group and held on to win the 17th USPRO Championship. Rodriguez finished the 156-mile race. Second place went to Saturn’s Trent Klasna. George Hincapie came across third, after winning a sprint with Fabrizio Guidi. Check back soon for full reports on both the men's and women's races. 2:54 The gap between the six leaders and the field has now grown back up to 22 seconds with just three miles to go. 2:51 The gap between the group of six and the field has been whittled to 15 seconds. Mercury’s Henk Vogels, who launched
12:42 p.m. German Petra Rossner has done it again. Saturn's German sprint power won the Liberty Classic in Philadelphia for the fifth straight time. Rossner's finishing time was 3:01:47. The good news for Saturn continued as Australian Anna Millward finished second to retain her overall World Cup lead. Dutch rider Debbie Mansfeld was third, followed by Canadian Sandy Espeseth (Intersports) and Mirjam Melchers (Acca Due-O). Stay tuned for a complete report on the race. 12:03 p.m. The sun has broken through the clouds, the temperature is 80 degrees, and the women's field went over the
Mario Cipollini won a sprint spread across the full width of the road to take the final stage and his fourth win of the 2001 Giro d’Italia and the 34th of his career. Once again, Danilo Hondo was right alongside him but lacked that little bit of extra speed and forcefulness. And eight years after he won the amateur Giro d’Italia, Gilberto Simoni has won the professional Giro by 7:31 over Abraham Olano, the largest margin since 1973, when Eddy Merckx beat Johan De Muynck by 7:42. Stage 21 traversed a flat, straight trajectory from Arona along Lago Maggiore and southeast to Milano, where 10
Frenchman Didier Rous of the Bonjour team won the 4km prologue at the rain-soaked curtain raiser to the 53rd edition of the Dauphine Libere cycle race in Morzine, France, on Sunday. Rous, France's No. 1 rider this season who won the Four Days of Dunkirk race and the Climbers Trophy, finished a second faster than Australian Bradley McGee. Britain's David Millar, who won the Tour de France prologue last year in his first appearance in the world's greatest cycling race, came in third, 3 seconds adrift of Rous. Copyright AFP 2001
While the NBA Finals fever generated by the Sixers-Lakers series has swept over Philadelphia, a couple hundred thousand boisterous spectators used the First Union USPRO Championships as the perfect tailgate party. The fans were out in force, and they were treated to a spectacular show. In the finale, defending USPRO champion (and runner-up last year to winner Henk Vogels) Fred Rodriguez (Domo-Farm Frites) beat out Saturn’s Trent Klasna and U.S. Postal’s George Hincapie in an all-American, 1-2-3 finish. Rodriguez slipped away in the final 500 meters to became the first American winner since
It’s seems like it’s become one of those inevitable things in cycling, just like Domo (and before them Mapei) winning Paris-Roubaix, the Belgians dominating cyclo-cross and Mario Cipollini winning Giro stages. Petra Rossner will win the First Union Liberty Classic World Cup. If it’s the beginning of June and there are women racing in Philadelphia, you might as well just write Rossner’s name down in the win column. The crew-cut Saturn rider made it four in a row – and five overall - in Philadelphia, winning the inevitable field sprint while towing teammate Anna Millward into second place, to
Ina Teutenberg won the New York City Women's Challenge on Saturday. The race in New York is considered a warm-up event for Sunday’s First Union Liberty Classic, the sixth stop on the Women's World Cup Tour. Teutenberg got the win by taking the final sprint out of a five-woman break. The small group contained Teutenberg her Saturn teammate Kim Davidge, plus Jenny Eyerman (Jane's Cosmetics), and Intersports teammates Elizabeth Emery’ and Erin Carter. That group escaped half way through the race after a solo break by Saturn’s Anke Erlank was absorbed. In the final sprint, it was Teutenberg
George Hincapie, teammate of two-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong, has signed a contract extension with the U.S. Postal team through the end of the 2004 season, it was announced Saturday. "George has been our team's leader for the World Cup and classic races for the past two years and this year he proved that he can win a big classic race," said the U.S. Postal team's director, Johan Bruyneel, in a statement. "His physical potential is still improving and he can count on all the support of the team in his attempt to win what we consider his race, Paris-Roubaix." The