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Former Giro winner Gilberto Simoni leads the Vuelta Mexico after a stage 3 attack.

Italian Gilberto Simoni (Serramenti PVC Disquigiovanni) attacked on the last climb to win stage 3 of the Vuelta Mexico on Tuesday and take over the yellow jersey. 2009 Vuelta Mexico Telmex

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By Luis Barbosa

2009 Vuelta Mexico, stage 3: Rock Racing's Chadwick leads Ladino and Gutierrez across the line.

2009 Vuelta Mexico, stage 3: Rock Racing’s Chadwick leads Ladino and Gutierrez across the line.

Photo: Luis Barbosa

Italian Gilberto Simoni (Serramenti PVC Disquigiovanni) attacked on the last climb to win stage 3 of the Vuelta Mexico on Tuesday and take over the yellow jersey.

2009 Vuelta Mexico Telmex
Stage 3: Puebla to Tlaxcala, 140km (86.99miles)

Winner: Gilberto Simoni (Serramenti PVC Disquigiovanni) in 4:00:30
Winner’s average speed: 34.92 kmh. (21.70 mph)
Sprint leader: Karl Menzies (OUCH)
Mountains leader: John Parra (Tecos)
Best Young rider (Under 23):Peter Stetina (USA U25)
Team GC leader: Mexican National
Peloton: 131 riders are expected to start stage 4
Up Next: Stage 4 is 200km (124 miles) from Tlaxcala to Cuernavaca. The stage starts at 7,400 feet elevation (2,266 meters) and finishes at about 5,000 feet (1,524 meters). The route contains several categorized climbs.


Complete results (.pdf)

A break of 10 riders took off early, containing Karl Menzies (OUCH) Darren Lill (Team Type 1) and Sergio Hernandez (Rock Racing). The group built up a lead of three minutes but was caught on the first categorized climb, although break member Francisco Matamoros (Tecos) stayed off the front over the first summit to grab the KOM points on offer there.

2009 Vuelta Mexico, stage 3: Rock Racing's Tyler Hamilton

2009 Vuelta Mexico, stage 3: Rock Racing’s Tyler Hamilton

Photo: Luis Barbosa

On the final climb, the main bunch was down to about 24 riders. With 6km to go, OUCH’s Floyd Landis put in a attack, but was chased down by one of Simoni’s teammates.

A minute later, another rider swerved in front of Landis and forced him to crash into a ditch.

“Floyd chased back to the caravan and made contact with the group with about 1 km to go,” OUCH team director Mike Tamayo said, “but at this point it was too late. The last kilometer was super steep.”

In the final kilometers, a group of 12 formed, containing Rock’s Glen Chadwick and Enrique Gutierres, Diquigiovanni’s Simoni, Carlos Ochoa, and Jackson Rodriguez, and the Mexicans Bernardo Colex, Ignacio Sarabia, and Carlos Lopez.

Two kilometers from the finish Simoni broke away with Lopez, while Tecos’ Colombian Gregorio Ladino and Mexican Jose Gomez bridged up to the group. Simoni, a two-time winner of the Giro d’Italia, now leads the race by five seconds over Lopez.

Landis finished 24th on the stage, 1:10 back of Simoni.

“I was suffering in the climb like everybody else,” Landis said. “I made a mistake in position and had a mishap in the ditch. The outcome would have still been the same. Simoni was very strong today.”

Thanks to the OUCH and Rock Racing teams for assistance in compiling this report.

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Results

Complete results (.pdf)
Stage 3:

1. Gilberto Simoni Diquigiovanni Androni 4:00:30
2. Carlos Lopez Canel’s Turbo at 5 sec.
3. Ignacio Sarabia Sel. Nal.México at 10 sec.
4. Jackson Rodriguez Diquigiovanni Androni at 12 sec.
5. Glen Chadwick Rock Racing at 13 sec.
6. Gregorio Ladino Tecos Trek s.t.
7. Jose E. Gutierrez Rock Racing s.t.
8. Carlos Ochoa Diquigiovanni Androni at 16 sec.
9. Jose Gomez Canel’s Turbo at 22 sec.
10. Julio Perez Canel’s Turbo s.t.

Overall
1. Gilberto Simoni Diquigiovanni Androni 11:47:56.
2. Carlos Lopez Canel’s Turbo 5 sec.
3. Ignacio Sarabia Sel. Nal.México 10 sec.
4. Jackson Rodriguez Diquigiovanni Androni 12 sec.
5. Jose E. Gutierrez Rock Racing 13 sec.
6. Gregorio Ladino Tecos Trek s.t.
7. Glen Chadwick Rock Racing s.t.