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Cancellara rules TT en route to Suisse win

Hometown favorite Fabian Cancellara won the Tour de Suisse on Sunday after dominating the ninth and final stage of the race, an individual time trial in Bern. Saxo Bank's big time-trial specialist, clad in the Swiss national champion's kit, blitzed the 38.5km course in 45 minutes and 59 seconds, for an average speed of 50.236km/h (31.2mph). He knew he had the overall locked up and took the time to cross the line with both hands in the air, road-stage style. Tony Martin (Columbia-Highroad) took second on the stage at 1:27 with Thomas Dekker (Silence-Lotto) third at 1:42.

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2009 Tour de Suisse, stage 9: Saxo Bank's Fabian Cancellara takes the finale and the overall.

2009 Tour de Suisse, stage 9: Saxo Bank’s Fabian Cancellara takes the finale and the overall.

Photo: Graham Watson

Hometown favorite Fabian Cancellara won the Tour de Suisse on Sunday after dominating the ninth and final stage of the race, an individual time trial in Bern.

Saxo Bank’s big time-trial specialist, clad in the Swiss national champion’s kit, blitzed the 38.5km course in 45 minutes and 59 seconds, for an average speed of 50.236km/h (31.2mph). He knew he had the overall locked up and took the time to cross the line with both hands in the air, road-stage style.

Tony Martin (Columbia-Highroad) took second on the stage at 1:27 with Thomas Dekker (Silence-Lotto) third at 1:42.

It was the first stage-race victory since the 2008 Tirreno-Adriatico for Cancellara, a two-time world champion in the race against the clock and the reigning Olympic champ in the discipline.

“It was a fantastic feeling to win on home ground today,” he said. “I must admit that I had goose bumps on the course and I could clearly feel the support from the audience.

2009 Tour de Suisse, stage 9: Columbia's Tony Martin took second on the day and overall.

2009 Tour de Suisse, stage 9: Columbia’s Tony Martin took second on the day and overall.

Photo: Graham Watson

“When I started Tour de Suisse I had not dreamed of the possibility of the overall victory. But with the team’s help and a shape that finally has arrived we managed anyway. It has been a fantastic week for me and for the team. I would like to thank the team, the audience and the sponsors for their support, and we could not wish for a better prelude to the Tour de France.”

When the final times were tallied, Cancellara claimed the overall victory by 2:02 over Martin with 2008 Tour de Suisse champion Roman Kreuziger (Liquigas) third at 2:24.

Tadej Valjavec (Ag2r), who began the day in the lead with just four seconds on Cancellara, saw his hopes of holding onto the leader’s jersey slip away early on — he finished 59th on the stage, 3:49 seconds adrift, and slipped to seventh overall at 3:45.

Saxo Bank director Kim Andersen called it “a good day” for his squad, noting that they came away with the best-team prize as well.

“It shows that the team is working very well together,” he said. “And now we must focus on the next big task.”

Photo Gallery

Results

Stage 9
1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Saxo Bank, 38.5km in 45:59 (50.236 km/h)
2. Tony Martin (G), Columbia-Highroad, at 1:27
3. Thomas Dekker (Ned), Silence-Lotto, at 1:42
4. Marcus Burghardt (G), Columbia-Highroad, at 1:43
5. Sylvain Chavanel (F), Quick Step, at 1:48
6. Cameron Meyer (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 1:50
7. Roman Kreuziger (Cze), Liquigas, at 2:00
8. Brian Vandborg (Den), Liquigas, at 2:02
9. Andreas Klöden (G), Astana, at 2:09
10. Thor Hushovd (Nor), Cervélo TestTeam, at 2:14
11. Vladimir Karpets (Rus), Katusha, at 2:21
12. Alessandro Ballan (I), Lampre, at 2:24
13. Heinrich Haussler (G), Cervélo TestTeam, at 2:33
14. Damiano Cunego (I), Lampre, at 2:33
15. Andy Schleck (Lux) Saxo Bank, at 2:37

Final overall
1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Saxo Bank, 33:05:51
2. Tony Martin (G), Columbia-Highroad, at 2:02
3. Roman Kreuziger (Cze), Liquigas, at 2:24
4. Andreas Klöden (G), Astana, at 2:50
5. Vladimir Karpets (Rus), Katusha, at 3:18
6. Damiano Cunego (I), Lampre, 3:23
7. Tadej Valjavec (Slo), Ag2r, at 3:45
8. Rein Taaramae (Est), Cofidis, at 4:04
9. Kim Kirchen (Lux), Columbia-Highroad, at 4:04
10. Maxime Monfort (B), Columbia-Highroad, at 4:08
11. Michael Albasini (Swi), Columbia-Highroad, at 4:53
12. Peter Velits (Svk), Milram, at 5:40
13. Rui Costa (Por), Caisse d’Epargne, at 5:58
14. George Hincapie (USA), Columbia-Highroad, at 6:08
15. Oliver Zaugg (Swi), Liquigas, at 6:11