Events

Voigt wows ’em at Paris-Nice prologue

Jens Voigt (CSC) ripped the short, 4km prologue Sunday to win the Paris-Nice opener and earned the distinction of being the first winner on cycling’s new ProTour while six-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong played it safe 27 seconds slower. Voigt was the hottest thing going on a sunny, but cold day in the Parisian suburb of Issy-les-Moulineaux to kick off the season-long ProTour series with the 63rd Paris-Nice. The concise course featured a short punchy climb to start and some tight corners, but it was the on-form Voigt who delivered the winning ride of 5 minutes, 15 seconds. Tour

Photo Gallery Below

By Andrew Hood

Voigt took a few risks to get the prologue win on Sunday

Voigt took a few risks to get the prologue win on Sunday

Photo: Graham Watson

Jens Voigt (CSC) ripped the short, 4km prologue Sunday to win the Paris-Nice opener and earned the distinction of being the first winner on cycling’s new ProTour while six-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong played it safe 27 seconds slower. Voigt was the hottest thing going on a sunny, but cold day in the Parisian suburb of Issy-les-Moulineaux to kick off the season-long ProTour series with the 63rd Paris-Nice. The concise course featured a short punchy climb to start and some tight corners, but it was the on-form Voigt who delivered the winning ride of 5 minutes, 15 seconds. Tour prologue winner Fabian Cancellara (Fassa Bortolo) was second at 2 seconds slower while Erik Dekker (Rabobank) and Vladimir Gusev (CSC) tied for third at 3 seconds slower. “It was not a very technical course,” said Voigt, who recovered from an upset stomach to make the start. “I was decisive in the first two kilometers. I used my speed and power and then I was able to maintain my rhythm.” Defending champion Jorg Jaksche, who traded his CSC jersey for Liberty Seguros in the off-season, was 20th at 8 seconds slower while two-time Paris-Nice champion Alexandre Vinokourov (T-Mobile) was 16th at 7 seconds slower. “I didn’t feel good, but I can’t explain it,” Jaksche said. “The time differences aren’t that significant. It was a short course and there’s a lot of racing still ahead. We’ll see what happens.” Team CSC packed six of its eight riders in the top 20, with David Zabriskie the top American at eighth at 5 seconds slower while Julich, third overall last year, stopped the clock 7 seconds slower at 17th. LA back in Europe
Armstrong’s 140th place reflects the six-time Tour winner’s attitude coming into Paris-Nice in what’s his first race in the new Discovery Channel jersey. After a busy off-season that included some doubts about whether he’d back to defend his Tour title, the 33-year-old Texan admits he’s not thinking about overall victory. “I have very low expectations for me personally,” Armstrong told Dan Osipow on the team’s web page before the race. “It will be my first race in Europe since the Tour of 2004.” Armstrong begins in earnest his preparation for a run at a seventh Tour crown at Paris-Nice, but says he won’t have the fitness to challenge such riders as Voigt and others who target the “Race to the Sun” as one of their season goals. Before Armstrong’s bout with cancer and his remarkable comeback, Paris-Nice used to be just that for him. “It’s interesting in that it used to be a real goal for me to try and win Paris-Nice. However, that has changed and it’s now purely a preparation race,” Armstrong said. “It’s a great race that is steeped in history.” Armstrong last raced Paris-Nice in 1999 when he finished 61st in what was his first real attempt at building his season around winning the Tour de France. The previous year, Armstrong abandoned after the second stage and nearly quit cycling for good. “Of course I will never forget quitting there in ‘98, going home, and basically retiring from cycling, only to come back a few months later,” Armstrong said. Paolo Savoldelli, making his first race appearance after breaking his collarbone in a training fall in January, led Discovery Channel 38th at 11 seconds slower. Yaroslav Popovych, the young Ukraine rider who’s being groomed to take Armstrong’s place as the team’s Tour de France leader, also stopped the clock at 11 seconds slower. Tom Danielson, making his Discovery Channel debut in Europe, finished 51st at 13 seconds slower. Voigt makes history
The eight-day Paris-Nice marks the somewhat difficult birth to cycling’s new ProTour, a series of 27 races that supporters insist will help modernize cycling. While many issues remain to be resolved between some of the major race organizers (including ASO, which puts on Paris-Nice, the Tour de France and Paris-Roubaix, among others), the racers seemed ready to get down to business. Such heavyweights as Armstrong and the entire 20-team ProTour lineup added prestige to the Paris-Nice prologue, but it was hard-working Voigt who delivered the historic first ProTour win. The 33-year-old notched his sixth win of the season to go with victories earlier this season in the Etoile de Besseges and the Tour Mediterranean. “I’ve won a very prestigious leader’s jersey here in Paris-Nice and I really hope we’re able to hold on to it for the rest of the race,” Voigt said after taking the yellow jersey. “I’m very proud and also very happy about this victory. The team has had a great year so far and it’s great to be able to continue in this way. We have been working extremely hard during the winter and it’s paying off now.” Voigt already won the Tour Mediterranean last month and his Team CSC seems intent on sweeping through Paris-Nice much like it did last year. Team CSC is coming off its third training camp of the season and team boss Bjarne Riis said he wants nothing less than victory. “Jens is flying at the moment, and of course this heightens our expectations for a big result. It’s not just Jens who can win the race. We have two or three others in a good position,” Riis said. “We’ve been training so hard ahead of Paris-Nice and now we have once again shown that we have done our homework.” The 63rd Paris-Nice continues Monday with the 186.5km first stage from Etampes to Chabris. The largely flat course pushes across the wheat fields south of Paris. The peloton will hit the Cat. 3 Côte de Graviers at 9.5km to give the climber’s something to shoot for early on and there are two points sprints to get the sprinters revved up. With plenty of sprinters in the field, a breakaway should have a hard time trying to stay away.
1. Jens Voigt (G), CSC, 05:15
2. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Fassa Bortolo, 00:02
3. Erik Dekker (Nl), Rabobank, 00:03
4. Vladimir Gusev (Rus), CSC, 00:03
5. Sylvain Chavanel (F), Cofidis, 00:04
6. Nico Mattan (B), DVL, 00:04
7. Alberto Contador (Sp), LSW, 00:04
8. David Zabriskie (USA), CSC, 00:05
9. Oscar Pereiro Sio (Sp), Phonak, 00:06
10. Michael Rogers (Aus), QuickStep, 00:06
Clickfor Full ResultsPhotoGallery Below

Photo Gallery

Results

2005 Paris-Nice

Prologue

1. Jens Voigt (G), CSC, 05:15

2. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Fassa Bortolo, 00:02

3. Erik Dekker (Nl), Rabobank, 00:03

4. Vladimir Gusev (Rus), CSC, 00:03

5. Sylvain Chavanel (F), Cofidis, 00:04

6. Nico Mattan (B), DVL, 00:04

7. Alberto Contador (Sp), LSW, 00:04

8. David Zabriskie (USA), CSC, 00:05

9. Oscar Pereiro Sio (Sp), Phonak, 00:06

10. Michael Rogers (Aus), QuickStep, 00:06

11. Thomas Dekker (Nl), Rabobank, 00:06

12. Arvesen Kurt-Asle (Nor), CSC, 00:07

13. Philippe Gilbert (B), FDJeux.com, 00:07

14. Thomas Voeckler (F), BTL, 00:07

15. Nicki Sorensen (Dk), CSC, 00:07

16. Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz), T-Mobile, 00:07

17. Bobby Julich (USA), CSC, 00:07

18. Didier Rous (F), BTL, 00:08

19. Davide Rebellin (I), Gerolsteiner, 00:08

20. Jorg Jaksche (G), LSW, 00:08

21. Dariusz Baranowski (Pol), LSW, 00:08

22. LÖvkvist Thomas (Swe), FDJeux.com, 00:08

23. Cadel Evans (Aus), DVL, 00:08

24. Jimmy Engoulvent (F), Cofidis, 00:08

25. Koen De Kort (Nl), LSW, 00:08

26. Mikel Astarloza (Sp), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:08

27. Vicente Reynes (Sp), IBA, 00:09

28. Juan Antonio Flecha (Sp), Fassa Bortolo, 00:09

29. Vaugrenard Benoît (F), FDJeux.com, 00:09

30. Leon Van Bon (Nl), DVL, 00:09

31. Alessandro Ballan (I), Lampre, 00:10

32. Constantino Zaballa (Sp), Saunier Duval, 00:10

33. Xabier Zandio (Sp), IBA, 00:10

34. Franco Pellizotti (I), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:10

35. Igor Gonzalez Galdeano (Sp), LSW, 00:10

36. Rik Verbrugghe (B), QuickStep, 00:10

37. Pineau Jérôme (F), BTL, 00:11

38. Paolo Savoldelli (I), Discovery Channel, 00:11

39. Frank Schleck (Lux), CSC, 00:11

40. Kim Kirchen (Lux), Fassa Bortolo, 00:11

41. Alejandro Valverde (Sp), IBA, 00:11

42. Laszlo Bodrogi (Hun), Credit Agricole, 00:11

43. Dario Cioni (I), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:11

44. Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr), Discovery Channel, 00:11

45. Mario Aerts (B), DVL, 00:12

46. Andy Flickinger (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:12

47. Johan Van Summeren (B), DVL, 00:12

48. Finot Frédéric (F), FDJeux.com, 00:12

49. Andrey Kashechkin (Kaz), Credit Agricole, 00:12

50. Olaf Pollack (G), T-Mobile, 00:12

51. Tom Danielson (USA), Discovery Channel, 00:13

52. Fred Rodriguez (USA), DVL, 00:13

53. Joost Posthuma (Nl), Rabobank, 00:13

54. Luis Sanchez (Sp), LSW, 00:13

55. Beat Zberg (Swi), Gerolsteiner, 00:13

56. Egoi Martinez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:13

57. Bram Tankink (Nl), QuickStep, 00:14

58. Floyd Landis (USA), Phonak, 00:14

59. Nicolas Vogondy (F), Credit Agricole, 00:14

60. Tom Boonen (B), QuickStep, 00:14

61. Francisco Ventoso (Sp), Saunier Duval, 00:14

62. Bradley Wiggins (GB), Credit Agricole, 00:14

63. David Navas (Sp), IBA, 00:14

64. Thomas Ziegler (G), Gerolsteiner, 00:15

65. Nicolas Jalabert (F), Phonak, 00:15

66. Laurent Lefevre (F), BTL, 00:16

66. Ronny Scholz (G), Gerolsteiner, 00:16

68. Evgeni Petrov (Rus), Lampre, 00:16

69. Axel Merckx (B), DVL, 00:16

70. Matthieu Sprick (F), BTL, 00:16

71. Robert Hunter (RSA), Phonak, 00:16

72. Marco Zanotti (I), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:17

73. Roy Sentjens (Nl), Rabobank, 00:17

74. Bram Schmitz (Nl), T-Mobile, 00:17

75. Christophe Brandt (B), DVL, 00:17

76. Grischa Niermann (G), Rabobank, 00:17

77. Aaron Kemps (Aus), LSW, 00:17

78. Antonio Tauler (Sp), IBA, 00:17

79. Aitor Osa (Sp), IBA, 00:17

80. David Moncoutie (F), Cofidis, 00:18

81. Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz), Credit Agricole, 00:18

82. Marc Lotz (Nl), QuickStep, 00:18

83. Kevin Hulsmans (B), QuickStep, 00:18

84. Dario Frigo (I), Fassa Bortolo, 00:18

85. Iker Camano (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:19

86. Carlos Sastre (Sp), CSC, 00:19

87. Joaquim Rodriguez (Sp), Saunier Duval, 00:19

88. Jimmy Casper (F), Cofidis, 00:19

89. Martin Perdiguero M_0x0_0angel (Sp), Phonak, 00:19

90. Maxim Iglinskiy (Kaz), Domina Vacanze, 00:19

91. Volodymir Gustov (Ukr), Fassa Bortolo, 00:19

92. Fabien Sanchez (F), FDJeux.com, 00:19

93. Luciano Pagliarini (BRA), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:19

94. Freddy Bichot (F), FDJeux.com, 00:19

95. Pierrick Fedrigo (F), BTL, 00:20

96. Javier Ramirez (Sp), LSW, 00:20

97. Matej Jurco (SVK), Domina Vacanze, 00:20

98. Nicolas Portal (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:20

99. Nazon Jean-Patrick (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:21

100. Gilberto Simoni (I), Lampre, 00:21

101. Serguei Ivanov (Rus), T-Mobile, 00:21

102. Luis Perez-Rodriguez (Sp), Cofidis, 00:21

103. Victor Hugo Pena (Col), Phonak, 00:21

104. Mathew Hayman (Aus), Rabobank, 00:21

105. Stephane Goubert (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:21

106. Torsten Hiekmann (G), T-Mobile, 00:21

107. Kevin De Weert (B), QuickStep, 00:21

108. Jose Angel Gomez (Sp), Saunier Duval, 00:21

109. Salvatore Commesso (I), Lampre, 00:22

110. Vila Errandonea Patxi Xabie (Sp), Lampre, 00:22

111. Inigo Chaurreau (Sp), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:22

112. Steven De Jongh (Nl), Rabobank, 00:22

113. Viatceslav Ekimov (Rus), Discovery Channel, 00:22

114. Mirko Celestino (I), Domina Vacanze, 00:23

115. Marcel Strauss (Swi), Gerolsteiner, 00:23

116. Sergio Ghisalberti (I), Domina Vacanze, 00:23

117. Tadej Valjavec (SLO), Phonak, 00:23

118. Unai Yus (Sp), BTL, 00:23

119. Christophe Detilloux (B), FDJeux.com, 00:23

120. Andrej Hauptman (SLO), Fassa Bortolo, 00:24

121. Gorka Verdugo (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:24

122. CarlstrÖm Kjell (FIN), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:24

123. Charles Wegelius (GB), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:24

124. Ludovic Turpin (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:24

125. Cyril Dessel (F), Ag2r Prevoyance, 00:24

126. Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz), Cofidis, 00:25

127. Daniele Righi (I), Lampre, 00:25

128. Inigo Cuesta (Sp), Saunier Duval, 00:25

129. Jan Boven (Nl), Rabobank, 00:25

130. Guido Trentin (I), QuickStep, 00:26

131. Mauro Facci (I), Fassa Bortolo, 00:26

132. Nicolas Fritsch (F), Saunier Duval, 00:26

133. Aketza Pena (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:26

134. Daniel Becke (G), IBA, 00:26

135. Rony Martias (F), BTL, 00:26

136. Patrick Calcagni (Swi), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:26

137. Alessandro Cortinovis (I), Domina Vacanze, 00:26

138. Rubiera José Luis (Sp), Discovery Channel, 00:26

139. Benoit Poilvet (F), Credit Agricole, 00:26

140. Lance Armstrong (USA), Discovery Channel, 00:27

141. Jorg Ludewig (G), Domina Vacanze, 00:27

142. Alexandre Botcharov (Rus), Credit Agricole, 00:27

143. David Loosli (Swi), Lampre, 00:28

144. Bingen Fernandez (Sp), Cofidis, 00:28

145. Paolo Bossoni (I), Fassa Bortolo, 00:28

146. Jonathan Gonzalez Rios (Sp), IBA, 00:28

147. Manuel Beltran (Sp), Discovery Channel, 00:29

148. Korff André (G), T-Mobile, 00:29

149. Azevedo José (P), Discovery Channel, 00:30

150. Oscar Sevilla (Sp), T-Mobile, 00:30

151. Jaan Kirsipuu (Est), Credit Agricole, 00:30

152. Gorka Gonzalez (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:30

153. Alexandre Moos (Swi), Phonak, 00:30

154. Angelo Furlan (I), Domina Vacanze, 00:31

155. Georg Totschnig (A), Gerolsteiner, 00:31

156. Andrea Moletta (I), Gerolsteiner, 00:32

157. Nicola Loda (I), Liquigas-Bianchi, 00:32

158. Leonardo Piepoli (I), Saunier Duval, 00:32

159. Ian Mcleod (RSA), FDJeux.com, 00:33

160. Bessy Frédéric (F), Cofidis, 00:33

161. Fabian Jeker (Swi), Saunier Duval, 00:34

162. Igor Anton (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:35

163. Gerrit Glomser (A), Lampre, 00:35

164. Alberto Lopez Munain (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:35

165. Rafael Nuritdinov (UZB), Domina Vacanze, 00:35

166. Marco Serpellini (I), Gerolsteiner, 00:37

167. Mikel Artetxe (Sp), Euskaltel-Euskadi, 00:38

168. Serguei Yakovlev (Kaz), T-Mobile, 00:42