Events

Breschel best as Vandenbergh endures CSC assault

It almost seemed unfair when the world No. 1 team ganged up on an untested youngster in Thursday’s hilly second stage at the Tour of Ireland. But Stijn Vandenbergh, Unibet.com’s unheralded neo-pro, proved he’s savvier than his 23 years when he fended off a collective effort by Team CSC to keep his yellow jersey dreams alive in the 166km run from Clonakilty to Killarney along Ireland’s stunning southwest coast. That’s not to say there weren’t some dicey moments for Vandenbergh, who surprised the favorites in Wednesday’s opener into Cork and take a huge 13-minute head start on all but nine

By Andrew Hood

Vandenbergh had reason to celebrate after fending off a tough challenge from CSC.

Vandenbergh had reason to celebrate after fending off a tough challenge from CSC.

Photo: Graham Watson

It almost seemed unfair when the world No. 1 team ganged up on an untested youngster in Thursday’s hilly second stage at the Tour of Ireland.

But Stijn Vandenbergh, Unibet.com’s unheralded neo-pro, proved he’s savvier than his 23 years when he fended off a collective effort by Team CSC to keep his yellow jersey dreams alive in the 166km run from Clonakilty to Killarney along Ireland’s stunning southwest coast.

That’s not to say there weren’t some dicey moments for Vandenbergh, who surprised the favorites in Wednesday’s opener into Cork and take a huge 13-minute head start on all but nine rivals in the Irish tour’s revival.

Vandenbergh was already under pressure from an all-out CSC assault when he punctured in critical moment in the hectic opening 50km of the windy stage.

Only hard work from Unibet.com teammates Pieter Jacobs and Luis Pasamontes helped tow him back to the front group just ahead of the first of the day’s five rated climbs.

From there, Vandenbergh was able to stay on the wheel and keep his slender 20-second grip on the leader’s jersey to second-place Marcus Ljungqvist (CSC).

“I punctured and I was a little nervous because I knew the climbs were coming, but Pieter and Luis really saved the day for me,” said Vandenbergh, who rolled across the line 19th safely with the lead group of 49 riders. “CSC had the whole team at the front and they brought back to the wheel. It was a hard day but we made it.”

It wasn’t a complete loss for Team CSC, however, as Dane Matti Breschel shot his way to the stage victory and Ljungqvist bounced ahead of Aaron Olson (T-Mobile) into second place with time bonuses.

Pasamontes helped tow the boss back into the field and then went to work patrolling the front of the field.

Pasamontes helped tow the boss back into the field and then went to work patrolling the front of the field.

Photo: Graham Watson

Unlike Wednesday’s stage that saw a 10-man breakaway pull clear to all but sew up the overall, Thursday’s much more difficult stage didn’t see a real breakaway make any major ground on CSC’s wary watch.

Kristan House (Navigators Insurance) led the way over the day’s main hurdle at the Cat. 1 Healy Pass at 103km and later sprinted to fifth in the stage in a fine day for the Brit on the American team.

The peloton fractured early under the pace and only 50 riders witnessing Breschel’s winning sprint with the second half of the bunch coming through 26 minutes back.

Vandenbergh held his own and survived a tough day in yellow.

Vandenbergh held his own and survived a tough day in yellow.

Photo: Graham Watson

“It was a tough day, especially in the first 50km. There were a lot of false flats, headwinds and the group split,” said Tom Schuler, sport director at Colavita Sutter Home. “It was a lot harder today than people realized.”

Brian Keanelly (Irish national team) gave it a shove after cresting the day’s final climb at the Cat. 2 Molls Gap with 23km to go before CSC kept drilling it at the front with the likes of Andy and Frank Schleck, stagiaire Lasse Bøchman and Michael Blaudzun taking pulls.

Danny Pate (Slipstream) made a daring run at solo victory with 10km to go but was reeled in with about 3km to go to set up the mass gallop.

Slipstream's Lewis and Dugan

Slipstream’s Lewis and Dugan

Photo: Graham Watson

After early efforts to dislodge Vandenbergh fell short, Team CSC turned its attention to winning the stage. CSC threw its collective weight behind Breschel, a former model in New York City who opted for life in the bicycle fast lane.

Breschel, winner at a stage at the Tour of Denmark earlier this month, fended off an early sprint by Borut Bozic (LPR) to win easily ahead of the highly touted Edvald Boasson Hagen (Maxbo-Bianchi) and Bernhard Eisel (T-Mobile), who came through third.

“We tried today on the hard climbs to try to eliminate the leader, but the Unibet guys are motivated and (Vandenbergh) showed he’s strong,” Breschel said. “Then we decided to go for the sprint. We knew it was a tricky sprint and the LPR guy opened up the sprint with 400 meters. I chose the right moment and went full gas with 150 meters to go. It’s my second victory of the season, so I am very happy.”

Vandenbergh seemed relieved at the finish line. He and his Unibet.com teammates had scrawled the numbers of the nine riders who were in Wednesday’s breakaway on their top tubes so they wouldn’t get caught out by surprise.

The Belgian knows if he can survive the remaining three sprint-friendly stages, the Irish tour is his.

“These were the two hardest stages, so now I am more confident I can make it to Dublin,” Vandenbergh said. “My legs actually felt better today than they did on Wednesday. I’m feeling good about my chances.”

No pints until Dublin, though Vandenbergh admitted he did treat himself to one glass of the “black stuff” after his win in Cork.

“If I make it to Dublin in the yellow jersey, I will drink a few Guinness to celebrate,” he said.

There would be no better way to celebrate the Tour of Ireland.

RACE NOTESRabobank has its development team here for the Irish tour, but there’s one rider who is turning heads. Sven Nys, the Belgian cyclo-cross king, is at the Irish tour to stretch his legs ahead of the winter racing season.

“I’m here to get some racing miles. If I don’t start racing now and build up my strength, you really can’t expect to be competitive in the winter,” he said before the start.Tomas Ziegler (T-Mobile) didn’t start; Morgan Fox (Murphy & Brown), Dermot Nally (Irish team), Graham Briggs (Recycling) and Richard Wilkinson (Plowman) didn’t finish – 100 riders remain.Breschel leads the points category with Luis Pasamontes (Unibet.com) leading the mountain’s jersey.

Results Stage 2
1. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC 3:57:07 (42.5kph)
2. Edvald Boasson Hagen (N), Maxbo Bianchi
3. Bernhard Eisel (A), T-Mobile
4. Borut Bozic (Slo), LPR
5. Kristian House (GB), Navigators Insurance
6. Moises Aldape Chaves (Mex), Ceramica Panaria
7. Daniel Lloyd (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed
8. Martijn Maaskant (Nl), Rabobank
9. Matteo Priamo (I), Ceramica Panaria
10. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance
Overall
1. Stijn Vandenberg (B), Unibet 7:58:57
2. Marcus Ljungqvist (S), CSC, at 0:20
3. Aaron Olson (USA), T-Mobile, at 0:21
4. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), South Australia-AIS, at 0:24
5. Gabriel Rasch (N), Maxbo Bianchi, at 0:25
6. Pieter Jacobs (B), Unibet, at 0:27
7. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance, at 0:28
8. Craig Lewis (USA), Slipstream, at 0:28
9. Glenn Bak (Dk), Murphy & Gunn, at 0:43
10. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC, at 13:15FullResults.

Photo Gallery

Results

Results Stage 2

1. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC 3:57:07 (42.5kph)

2. Edvald Boasson Hagen (N), Maxbo Bianchi

3. Bernhard Eisel (A), T-Mobile

4. Borut Bozic (Slo), LPR

5. Kristian House (GB), Navigators Insurance

6. Moises Aldape Chaves (Mex), Ceramica Panaria

7. Daniel Lloyd (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

8. Martijn Maaskant (Nl), Rabobank

9. Matteo Priamo (I), Ceramica Panaria

10. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance

11. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), South Australia-AIS

12. Gabriel Rasch (N), Maxbo Bianchi

13. Pieter Jacobs (B), Unibet

14. Thomas Berkhout (Nl), Rabobank

15. Luis Pasamontes (Sp), Unibet

16. Paul Griffin (Irl), Irish National

17. David McCann (Irl), Colavita-Sutter Home

18. Hamish Haynes (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

19. Stijn Vandenberg (B), Unibet

20. Chris Newton (GB), Recycling.co.uk

21. Timothy Duggan (USA), Slipstream

22. Mark Cassidy (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

23. Marco Marcato (I), LPR

24. Marcus Ljungqvist (S), CSC

25. David O'Loughlin (Irl), Navigators Insurance

26. Lars Petter Nordhaug (N), Maxbo Bianchi

27. Craig Lewis (USA), Slipstream

28. Philip Deignan (Irl), Irish National

29. Aaron Olson (USA), T-Mobile

30. Adam Bonser (GB), Recycling.co.uk

31. Michael Ford (Aus), South Australia-AIS

32. Martijn Keizer (Nl), Rabobank

33. Ian MacGregor (USA), Slipstream

34. Glenn Bak (Dk), Murphy & Gunn

35. Alessandro Maserati (I), LPR

36. Frantisek Rabon (Cze), T-Mobile

37. Jeremy Vennell (NZ), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

38. Daniel Fleeman (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

39. Ryan Bonser (GB), Recycling.co.uk

40. Gordon McCauley (NZ), Plowman Craven, all s.t.

41. Karsten Kroon (Nl), CSC, at 0:12

42. Roberto Traficante (I), LPR, at 0:15

43. Michael Blaudzun (Dk), CSC, at

44. Lasse Bochmann (Dk), CSC, at 0:18

45. Brian Keneally (Irl), Irish National, at 0:20

46. Francesco Tomei (I), Ceramica Panaria, at

47. Danny Pate (USA), Slipstream, at 0:26

48. Frank Schleck (Lux), CSC, at 0:27

49. Andy Schleck (Lux), CSC, at 0:32

50. Sergey Lagutin (Rus), Navigators Insurance, at 6:09

51. Gert Vanderaerden (B), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed, at 26:06

52. Ben Day (Aus), Navigators Insurance

53. James Millard (GB), Plowman Craven

54. Tony Gibb (GB), Plowman Craven

55. Mike Friedman (USA), Slipstream

56. Andy Guptill (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

57. Martyn Irvine (Irl), Irish National

58. Derek Burke (Irl), Irish National

59. Nazareno Rossi (Swi), LPR

60. Tyler Wren (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

61. Gene Bates (Aus), South Australia-AIS

62. Anthony Colby (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

63. Zakkari Dempster (Aus), South Australia-AIS

64. Charles Dionne (Can), Colavita-Sutter Home

65. Evan Oliphant (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

66. Adam Bergman (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

67. Daniel Vaillancourt (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

68. Rieno Stofferis (B), Murphy & Gunn

69. Sven De Weerdt (B), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

70. Stephen Gallagher (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

71. Paidi O'Brien (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

72. Johnnie Walker (Aus), South Australia-AIS

73. Glen Chadwick (NZ), Navigators Insurance

74. Isaac Speirs (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

75. Simon Richardson (GB), Plowman Craven

76. Simon Gaywood (GB), Plowman Craven

77. Ian Stannard (GB), T-Mobile

78. Rob Partridge (GB), Recycling.co.uk

79. Roger Beuchat (Swi), LPR

80. Jonas Ljungblad (S), Unibet

81. Toms Veelers (Nl), Rabobank

82. Marcel Beima (Nl), T-Mobile

83. Filippo Savini (I), Ceramica Panaria

84. Maximiliano Richeze (Arg), Ceramica Panaria

85. Boy Van Poppel (Nl), Rabobank

86. Alexander Kristoff (N), Maxbo Bianchi

87. Troels Vinther (Dk), Unibet

88. Baden Cooke (Aus), Unibet

89. Jeremy Hunt (GB), Unibet

90. Simon Holt (GB), Recycling.co.uk

91. Dennis Van Winden (Nl), Rabobank

92. Samuele Marzoli (I), LPR

93. Sven Nys (B), Rabobank

94. Tom Diggle (GB), Recycling.co.uk

95. Daniele Colli (I), Ceramica Panaria

96. Simon Clarke (Aus), South Australia-AIS

97. Svein Vold (N), Maxbo Bianchi

98. Stian Sommerseth (N), Maxbo Bianchi

99. Joachim Bohler (N), Maxbo Bianchi
100. Patrick McCarty (USA), Slipstream, all s.t.

Did Not Finish

  • Morgan Fox (Irl), Murphy & Gunn
  • Dermot Nally (Irl), Irish National
  • Graham Briggs (GB), Recycling.co.uk
  • Richard Wilkinson (GB), Plowman Craven

Did Not Start

  • Thomas Ziegler (G), T-Mobile

Overall

1. Stijn Vandenberg (B), Unibet 7:58:57

2. Marcus Ljungqvist (S), CSC, at 0:20

3. Aaron Olson (USA), T-Mobile, at 0:21

4. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), South Australia-AIS, at 0:24

5. Gabriel Rasch (N), Maxbo Bianchi, at 0:25

6. Pieter Jacobs (B), Unibet, at 0:27

7. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance, at 0:28

8. Craig Lewis (USA), Slipstream, at 0:28

9. Glenn Bak (Dk), Murphy & Gunn, at 0:43

10. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC, at 13:15

11. Luis Pasamontes (Sp), Unibet, at 13:28

12. Edvald Boasson Hagen (N), Maxbo Bianchi, at 13:39

13. Bernhard Eisel (A), T-Mobile, at 13:41

14. Martijn Maaskant (Nl), Rabobank, at 13:43

15. Daniel Lloyd (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed, at

16. Borut Bozic (Slo), LPR, at 13:44

17. Matteo Priamo (I), Ceramica Panaria, at 13:45

18. Kristian House (GB), Navigators Insurance

19. Thomas Berkhout (Nl), Rabobank

20. David McCann (Irl), Colavita-Sutter Home

21. Alessandro Maserati (I), LPR

22. Martijn Keizer (Nl), Rabobank

23. Moises Aldape Chaves (Mex), Ceramica Panaria

24. Michael Ford (Aus), South Australia-AIS

25. Lars Petter Nordhaug (N), Maxbo Bianchi

26. Mark Cassidy (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

27. Chris Newton (GB), Recycling.co.uk

28. Daniel Fleeman (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

29. Paul Griffin (Irl), Irish National

30. David O'Loughlin (Irl), Navigators Insurance

31. Marco Marcato (I), LPR

32. Frantisek Rabon (Cze), T-Mobile

33. Hamish Haynes (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

34. Timothy Duggan (USA), Slipstream

35. Philip Deignan (Irl), Irish National

36. Adam Bonser (GB), Recycling.co.uk

37. Ryan Bonser (GB), Recycling.co.uk

38. Jeremy Vennell (NZ), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed, all s.t.

39. Karsten Kroon (Nl), CSC, at 13:57

40. Michael Blaudzun (Dk), CSC, at 14:00

41. Roberto Traficante (I), LPR, at

42. Lasse Bochmann (Dk), CSC, at 14:03

43. Brian Keneally (Irl), Irish National, at 14:04

44. Francesco Tomei (I), Ceramica Panaria, at 14:05

45. Danny Pate (USA), Slipstream, at 14:11

46. Frank Schleck (Lux), CSC, at 14:12

47. Andy Schleck (Lux), CSC, at 14:17

48. Ian MacGregor (USA), Slipstream, at 15:15

49. Gordon McCauley (NZ), Plowman Craven, at 15:16

50. Sergey Lagutin (Rus), Navigators Insurance, at 19:54

51. Roger Beuchat (Swi), LPR, at 26:33

52. Jonas Ljungblad (S), Unibet, at 39:46

53. Dennis Van Winden (Nl), Rabobank, at 39:48

54. Paidi O'Brien (Irl), Murphy & Gunn, at 39:50

55. Andy Guptill (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home, at 39:51

56. Charles Dionne (Can), Colavita-Sutter Home

57. Nazareno Rossi (Swi), LPR

58. Mike Friedman (USA), Slipstream

59. Boy Van Poppel (Nl), Rabobank

60. Daniel Vaillancourt (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

61. Toms Veelers (Nl), Rabobank

62. Ben Day (Aus), Navigators Insurance

63. Zakkari Dempster (Aus), South Australia-AIS

64. Sven Nys (B), Rabobank

65. Baden Cooke (Aus), Unibet

66. Marcel Beima (Nl), T-Mobile

67. Anthony Colby (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

68. Samuele Marzoli (I), LPR

69. Rob Partridge (GB), Recycling.co.uk

70. Ian Stannard (GB), T-Mobile

71. James Millard (GB), Plowman Craven

72. Simon Clarke (Aus), South Australia-AIS

73. Tyler Wren (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

74. Tony Gibb (GB), Plowman Craven

75. Svein Vold (N), Maxbo Bianchi

76. Glen Chadwick (NZ), Navigators Insurance

77. Stephen Gallagher (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

78. Simon Richardson (GB), Plowman Craven

79. Evan Oliphant (GB), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

80. Gene Bates (Aus), South Australia-AIS

81. Patrick McCarty (USA), Slipstream

82. Troels Vinther (Dk), Unibet

83. Alexander Kristoff (N), Maxbo Bianchi

84. Johnnie Walker (Aus), South Australia-AIS

85. Isaac Speirs (Irl), Murphy & Gunn

86. Joachim Bohler (N), Maxbo Bianchi

87. Stian Sommerseth (N), Maxbo Bianchi

88. Tom Diggle (GB), Recycling.co.uk

89. Daniele Colli (I), Ceramica Panaria, all s.t.

90. Derek Burke (Irl), Irish National, at 40:26

91. Simon Holt (GB), Recycling.co.uk, at 40:35

92. Gert Vanderaerden (B), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed, at 41:08

93. Martyn Irvine (Irl), Irish National, at 41:21

94. Adam Bergman (USA), Colavita-Sutter Home

95. Filippo Savini (I), Ceramica Panaria

96. Maximiliano Richeze (Arg), Ceramica Panaria, all s.t.

97. Jeremy Hunt (GB), Unibet, at 41:22

98. Rieno Stofferis (B), Murphy & Gunn, at 41:53

99. Sven De Weerdt (B), DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed, at 42:02

100. Simon Gaywood (GB), Plowman Craven, s.t.

Points

1. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC, 24 pts

2. Gabriel Rasch (N), Maxbo Bianchi, 21

3. Stijn Vandenberg (B), Unibet, 20

4. Marcus Ljungqvist (S), CSC, 20

5. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), South Australia-AIS, 19

6. Pieter Jacobs (B), Unibet, 17

7. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance, 16

8. Aaron Olson (USA), T-Mobile, 14

9. Edvald Boasson Hagen (N), Maxbo Bianchi, 14

10. Borut Bozic (Slo), LPR, 14

KOM

1. Luis Pasamontes (Sp), Unibet, 30 pts

2. Roger Beuchat (Swi), LPR, 26

3. Marcus Ljungqvist (S), CSC, 23

4. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr), Navigators Insurance, 20

5. Glenn Bak DAN Murphy & Gunn, 18

6. Gabriel Rasch (N), Maxbo Bianchi, 16

7. Kristian House (GB), Navigators Insurance, 15

8. Sergey Lagutin (Rus), Navigators Insurance, 14

9. Craig Lewis (USA), Slipstream, 14

10. Matti Breschel (Dk), CSC, 14

 

Teams

1. Unibet, 24:11:00

2. CSC, at 13:44

3. T-Mobile, at 13:48

4. Maxbo-Bianchi, at 13:49

5. Navigators Insurance

6. LPR

7. Slipstream, both s.t.

8. Rabobank, at 27:06

9. DFL-cyclingnews-Litespeed

10. Recycling, both s.t.

11. Ceramica Panaria, at 27:26

12. Irish National, s.t.

13. South Australia AIS 39:55

14. Murphy & Gunn, at 40:12

15. Colavita-Sutter Home, at 1:19:18

16. Plowman Craven Evans Cycles, s.t.