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Vande Velde wins 2008 Tour of Missouri

In a blustery, weather-shortened final stage of the Tour of Missouri, Italian Francesco Chicchi (Liquigas) surprised Columbia's Mark Cavendish and Garmin-Chipotle's Tyler Farrar to win in St. Louis, as Garmin's Christian Vande Velde secured the overall win in a hotly contested GC battle. Chicchi's stage win, in sight of the city's iconic Gateway Arch, concluded a week-long rivalry between America's biggest pro teams — indeed it was one of only two stages of this year's edition of the "Toura Missoura" that was not won by either Garmin or Columbia.

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Chicchi takes final sprint ahead of Cavendish

By Steve Frothingham

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: The peloton passes in front of the Gateway Arch.

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: The peloton passes in front of the Gateway Arch.

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

In a blustery, weather-shortened final stage of the Tour of Missouri, Italian Francesco Chicchi (Liquigas) surprised Columbia’s Mark Cavendish and Garmin-Chipotle’s Tyler Farrar to win in St. Louis, as Garmin’s Christian Vande Velde secured the overall win in a hotly contested GC battle.

Chicchi’s stage win, in sight of the city’s iconic Gateway Arch, concluded a week-long rivalry between America’s biggest pro teams — indeed it was one of only two stages of this year’s edition of the “Toura Missoura” that was not won by either Garmin or Columbia.

The final tally: Four stage wins by Columbia (three for Cavendish and one for Michael Barry), one for Garmin (Vande Velde’s decisive stage 3 time trial win), one by Rabobank (Boy Van Poppel took stage 5) and one for Liquigas. Cavendish also took the points jersey and Columbia won the team GC competition.

2008 Tour of Missouri

Stage 7, St. Louis Circuit Race

56.2 miles/90.5 km


Winner: Francesco Chicchi (Liquigas) won the field sprint in 1:57:06 (28.8 mph/46.4 kmh.
Leader: Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Chipotle) won his first Tour of Missouri, finishing safely in the front field.
Points: Mark Cavendish (Columbia)
Team GC: Team Columbia
KOM: Dominque Rollin (Toyota-United)
Best Young Rider: Roman Kreuzinger (Liquigas)
Most Aggressive Rider: Jeff Louder (BMC)
Peloton: 93 riders finished, down from the 116 that started the race on Sept. 8

There were some scraps left over for the other teams: BMC’s Jeff Louder won the week’s most aggressive rider’s competition and Toyota-United’s strong man Dominque Rollin — all 185 pounds of him — won the climber’s competition.

But Garmin came away with the biggest prize with Vande Velde’s win. And it was hard-fought battle until the end as the time trial left Columbia’s Michael Rogers just 18 seconds behind and defending Missouri champ George Hincapie 1:03 in arrears.

Start like a hurricane

Hurricane Ike’s outer tendrils brought about two inches of rain and winds near 30 mph to St. Louis in the early morning Sunday, enough to flood parts of the city’s Forest Park and force organizers to shorten each of the race’s five circuits by about 3.5 miles. The result was a race of just over 50 miles, instead of the planned 70 miles.

Two riders went clear on the rainy first lap and held a gap until the closing kilometers when the sprinters’ teams took over. Kirk O’Bee (Health Net-Maxxis) and Jeremy Powers (Jelly Belly) earned some TV time, if not a final result, with their day’s work. Powers did earn $500 for grabbing primes along the way.

After the storm blew out midway through the race, the roads dried for a clear finish. The wind had been variable all day — a large American flag behind the finish line was often blowing stiffly straight into the riders’ faces on the finish straight. But other times it hung limply or blew at a 90-degree cross wind, from the riders’ right.

Because of an expected headwind, Cavendish had told his team to deliver him for a short sprint, dumping him off in the final meters.

After reeling in Powers and then O’Bee with some help from Colavita in the last lap, Columbia dominated the long lead-out into the finish. But despite his instructions, Cavendish struck out for the line a bit too early, he said.

“I came off Bernie (Eisel) way too early and I ended up dying before the line,” he said.

Chicchi, the U23 world road race champion in 2002, had jumped onto Cavendish’s wheel and came around the British speedster with about 200 meters to go.

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: The Chicchi Kick: Francesco Chicchi takes the win in St. Louis.

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: The Chicchi Kick: Francesco Chicchi takes the win in St. Louis.

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

“I probably surprised Mark by coming out so early,” Chicchi said. “I was very fortunate, very lucky to beat Mark.”

Cavendish admitted to some surprise. “A little bit, yeah, because it’s the first time someone’s actually passed me in a sprint since March.”

Arch rivalry ends

Vande Velde said the toughest day of this tour was Thursday, a day of relentless rolling hills in central Missouri, ending in the appropriately named town of Rolla. He and his team struggled to control the race and narrowly contained attacks by Rogers and Hincapie.

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: Vande Velde finished safely (riding his Olympic road race bike with new Dura Ace parts)

2008 Tour of Missouri, stage 7: Vande Velde finished safely (riding his Olympic road race bike with new Dura Ace parts)

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

The next day, Columbia went on the attack again, waiting for a crosswind section in the Missouri River floodplain to throw down a series of attacks to try to shake Vande Velde loose from his team.

“It was game on, it was a big war with everyone throwing everything at us,” Vande Velde said. “It was a great race. I was happy that they didn’t give us a bye because it means that much more to win this week.”

At a news conference, flanked at a table by Columbia’s Rogers and Cavendish, Vande Velde revealed a bit of the stress of being hounded by Columbia all week.

“A lot of times, people just concede or relax or just don’t put as much emphasis,” he looked at Rogers and Cavendish and smiled, “on attacking me.”

The race over and his season nearly done save for a criterium, Vande Velde didn’t seem to take the hounding personally. He, Rogers and Cavendish nearly lost out to a giggling fit over a private joke for the rest of the news conference, with Cavendish biting his knuckles at one point to keep from laughing into his microphone.

Photo Gallery

Results

Stage Results: | (GC Results)

1. Francesco Chicchi (ITA) Liquigas in 1.57:06
2. Mark Cavendish (GBR) Team Columbia at
3. Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o
4. Ivan Dominguez (CUB) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team
5. Brad Huff (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team
6. Michael Van Stayen (BEL) Rabobank
7. Danilo Wyss (SUI) Bmc Racing Team
8. Boy Van Poppel (NED) Rabobank
9. Alejandro Borrajo (ARG) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
10. Andrew Pinfold (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team
11. Eric Baumann (GER) Team Sparkasse
12. Luis Hernandez (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara
13. Bernhard Eisel (AUT) Team Columbia
14. John Murphy (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis
15. Jacopo Guarnieri (ITA) Liquigas
16. Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o
17. Antonio Cruz (USA) Bmc Racing Team
18. Pablo Aranda Juan (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara
19. Michael Barry (CAN) Team Columbia
20. Alex Candelario (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast
21. Marcel Beima (NED) Rabobank
22. Benjamin Day (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team
23. Kyle Gritters (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis
24. Svein Tuft (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team
25. Sebastian Frey (GER) Team Sparkasse
26. George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia
27. Dirk Muller (GER) Team Sparkasse
28. Tom Danielson (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o
29. Michael Rogers (AUS) Team Columbia
30. Amaran Romero Luis (CUB) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
31. Richard Faltus (CZE) Team Sparkasse
32. Dominique Rollin (CAN) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team
33. Garrett Peltonen (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling
34. Mike Sayers (USA) Bmc Racing Team
35. Danny Pate (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o
36. Brent Bookwalter (USA) Bmc Racing Team
37. Darren Lill (RSA) Bmc Racing Team
38. Jeffry Louder (USA) Bmc Racing Team
39. Roman Kreuziger (CZE) Liquigas
40. Marco Pinotti (ITA) Team Columbia
41. Andrew Bajadali (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast
42. Eric Wohlberg (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team
43. Richard England (AUS) Bissell Pro Cycling
44. Thomas Berkhout (NED) Rabobank
45. Gustavo Artacho (ARG) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
46. Matej Mugerli (SLO) Liquigas
47. Steven Kruijswijk (NED) Rabobank
48. Jonathan Mumford (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast
49. Andreas Schillinger (GER) Team Sparkasse
50. Jonathan Garcia (USA) Bmc Racing Team
51. Anthony Colby (USA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
52. Tim Johnson (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis
53. Edward King (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling
54. Nick Reistad (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team
55. Jeremy Powers (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team at
56. Ryan Anderson (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team
57. Dan Bowman (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast
58. Andy Guptill (USA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
59. Michael Creed (USA) Rock Racing
60. Steven Cozza (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o
61. Bernardo Tepoz (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara
62. Jeremiah Wiscovitch (USA) Rock Racing
63. Scott Zwizanski (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling
64. Tom Zirbel (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling
65. Carlos Oyarzun (CHI) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara
66. Justin Spinelli (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast
67. Martin Kohler (SUI) Bmc Racing Team
68. Davide Frattini (ITA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light
69. Jetse Bol (NED) Rabobank
70. Omer Kem (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling
71. Rory Sutherland (AUS) Health Net Presented By Maxxis
72. Gianni Da Ros (ITA) Liquigas
73. Will Routley (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 1.57:24 at 18
74. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) Liquigas in 1.57:24 at 18
75. Karl Menzies (AUS) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 1.57:30 at 24
76. Kai Reus (NED) Rabobank in 1.57:30 at 24
77. Christopher Baldwin (USA) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 1.57:30 at 24
78. Chris Wherry (USA) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 1.57:50 at 44
79. Cameron Evans (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 1.57:50 at 44
80. Matthew Rice (AUS) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 1.57:55 at 49
81. Hilton Clarke (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 1.57:55 at 49
82. Bernard Van Ulden (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 1.58:00 at 54
83. Kiel Reijnen (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 1.58:00 at 54
84. David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 1.58:09 at 1:03
85. Frank Pipp (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 1.58:14 at 1:08
86. Roman Kilun (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 1.58:14 at 1:08
87. Thomas Rabou (NED) Rabobank in 1.58:34 at 1:28
88. Lui Colunga (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 1.58:49 at 1:43
89. Rob Ruijgh (NED) Team Sparkasse in 1.59:34 at 2:28
90. Darren Lapthorne (AUS) Team Sparkasse in 1.59:34 at 2:28
91. Lars Wackernagel (GER) Team Sparkasse in 1.59:34 at 2:28
92. Caleb Manion (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 1.59:48 at 2:42
93. Kirk O’bee (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 1.59:48 at 2:42


GC Results: | (Stage Results)

1. Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.23:26
2. Michael Rogers (AUS) Team Columbia in 21.23:44
3. Svein Tuft (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 21.24:14 at 48
4. George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia in 21.24:29 at 1:03
5. Tom Danielson (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.24:58 at 1:32
6. Benjamin Day (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.24:59 at 1:33
7. Roman Kreuziger (CZE) Liquigas in 21.25:20 at 1:54
8. Jeffry Louder (USA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.26:05 at 2:39
9. Dominique Rollin (CAN) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.26:08 at 2:42
10. Michael Barry (CAN) Team Columbia in 21.26:13 at 2:47
11. Dirk Muller (GER) Team Sparkasse in 21.26:44 at 3:18
12. Antonio Cruz (USA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.26:49 at 3:23
13. Danilo Wyss (SUI) Bmc Racing Team in 21.27:08 at 3:42
14. Marco Pinotti (ITA) Team Columbia in 21.27:34 at 4:08
15. Eric Baumann (GER) Team Sparkasse in 21.28:22 at 4:56
16. Tom Zirbel (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling in 21.28:45 at 5:19
17. Andrew Bajadali (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast in 21.30:14 at 6:48
18. Richard Faltus (CZE) Team Sparkasse in 21.30:54 at 7:28
19. Andreas Schillinger (GER) Team Sparkasse in 21.30:56 at 7:30
20. Tim Johnson (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.31:12 at 7:46
21. Thomas Rabou (NED) Rabobank in 21.35:48 at 12:22
22. Bernardo Tepoz (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 21.36:04 at 12:38
23. Omer Kem (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling in 21.39:57 at 16:31
24. Darren Lill (RSA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.43:19 at 19:53
25. Rory Sutherland (AUS) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.43:30 at 20:04
26. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) Liquigas in 21.43:56 at 20:30
27. Brent Bookwalter (USA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.44:00 at 20:34
28. Amaran Romero Luis (CUB) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.44:14 at 20:48
29. Martin Kohler (SUI) Bmc Racing Team in 21.44:20 at 20:54
30. Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.44:34 at 21:08
31. Mark Cavendish (GBR) Team Columbia in 21.44:44 at 21:18
32. Danny Pate (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.44:46 at 21:20
33. Edward King (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling in 21.45:06 at 21:40
34. Matej Mugerli (SLO) Liquigas in 21.45:19 at 21:53
35. Chris Wherry (USA) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.45:26 at 22:00
36. Michael Creed (USA) Rock Racing in 21.45:50 at 22:24
37. Steven Cozza (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.45:59 at 22:33
38. Christopher Baldwin (USA) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.46:03 at 22:37
39. Jonathan Garcia (USA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.46:08 at 22:42
40. Thomas Berkhout (NED) Rabobank in 21.46:10 at 22:44
41. John Murphy (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.46:11 at 22:45
42. Dan Bowman (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast in 21.46:18 at 22:52
43. Brad Huff (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.46:45 at 23:19
44. Davide Frattini (ITA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.46:51 at 23:25
45. Marcel Beima (NED) Rabobank in 21.46:57 at 23:31
46. Carlos Oyarzun (CHI) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 21.47:08 at 23:42
47. Karl Menzies (AUS) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.47:14 at 23:48
48. Richard England (AUS) Bissell Pro Cycling in 21.47:15 at 23:49
49. Boy Van Poppel (NED) Rabobank in 21.47:16 at 23:50
50. Justin Spinelli (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast in 21.47:29 at 24:03
51. Pablo Aranda Juan (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 21.47:35 at 24:09
52. Kai Reus (NED) Rabobank in 21.47:44 at 24:18
53. Eric Wohlberg (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 21.48:07 at 24:41
54. Anthony Colby (USA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.48:09 at 24:43
55. Michael Van Stayen (BEL) Rabobank in 21.48:20 at 24:54
56. David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin/chipotle Presented By H3o in 21.48:30 at 25:04
57. Roman Kilun (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.48:30 at 25:04
58. Steven Kruijswijk (NED) Rabobank in 21.48:34 at 25:08
59. Jeremy Powers (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.48:41 at 25:15
60. Alejandro Borrajo (ARG) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.48:45 at 25:19
61. Francesco Chicchi (ITA) Liquigas in 21.48:45 at 25:19
62. Luis Hernandez (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 21.48:51 at 25:25
63. Matthew Rice (AUS) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.48:51 at 25:25
64. Jacopo Guarnieri (ITA) Liquigas in 21.49:05 at 25:39
65. Hilton Clarke (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.49:32 at 26:06
66. Gustavo Artacho (ARG) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.49:50 at 26:24
67. Kiel Reijnen (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.49:54 at 26:28
68. Cameron Evans (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 21.50:04 at 26:38
69. Ryan Anderson (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 21.50:06 at 26:40
70. Jeremiah Wiscovitch (USA) Rock Racing in 21.50:15 at 26:49
71. Gianni Da Ros (ITA) Liquigas in 21.50:23 at 26:57
72. Garrett Peltonen (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling in 21.50:33 at 27:07
73. Andy Guptill (USA) Colavita/sutter Home Presented By Cooking Light in 21.51:07 at 27:41
74. Ivan Dominguez (CUB) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 21.51:26 at 28:00
75. Bernard Van Ulden (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.51:49 at 28:23
76. Jetse Bol (NED) Rabobank in 21.52:34 at 29:08
77. Mike Sayers (USA) Bmc Racing Team in 21.53:26 at 30:00
78. Darren Lapthorne (AUS) Team Sparkasse in 21.53:41 at 30:15
79. Frank Pipp (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.53:48 at 30:22
80. Kyle Gritters (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.54:09 at 30:43
81. Jonathan Mumford (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast in 21.54:18 at 30:52
82. Alex Candelario (USA) Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast in 21.54:32 at 31:06
83. Kirk O’bee (USA) Health Net Presented By Maxxis in 21.54:45 at 31:19
84. Rob Ruijgh (NED) Team Sparkasse in 21.54:49 at 31:23
85. Lars Wackernagel (GER) Team Sparkasse in 21.56:24 at 32:58
86. Will Routley (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 21.56:47 at 33:21
87. Bernhard Eisel (AUT) Team Columbia in 21.57:26 at 34:00
88. Lui Colunga (MEX) Tecos De La Universidad Autonoma De Guadalaiara in 21.57:54 at 34:28
89. Nick Reistad (USA) Jelly Belly Cycling Team in 21.58:44 at 35:18
90. Sebastian Frey (GER) Team Sparkasse in 22.00:23 at 36:57
91. Andrew Pinfold (CAN) Symmetrics Cycling Team in 22.01:22 at 37:56
92. Scott Zwizanski (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling in 22.01:58 at 38:32
93. Caleb Manion (AUS) Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team in 22.01:59 at 38:33
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