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Live Coverage – Stage 19 Tour de France, 2008

12:51 PM: Good day and welcometo VeloNews.com's Live Coverage of the 19th stage of the 95th Tour de France, a short 165.5-kilometer race from Roanne to Montlucon.

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  • 12:51 PM: Good day and welcome

    to VeloNews.com’s Live Coverage of the 19th stage of the 95th Tour de France, a short 165.5-kilometer race from Roanne to Montlucon.

    Except for two minor climbs in the Monts de la Madeleine range during the opening hour of racing out of Roanne (population 40,000), there are mainly flat roads on this stage across central France with some rollers in the last 50km before Montlucon (population 44,000). While the wind has been a factor in past stages – often a strong headwind from the west – today’s 10kph breeze from the northeast will probably not be a major factor, unless it picks up speed during the afternoon.

    Montlucon has seen five stage finishes of the Tour, the last one in 2001, when Belgian Serge Baguet attacked late from a small breakaway group and just held on to defeat Denmark’s Jakob Piil; the peloton was only 13 seconds back.

    With Paris only two days away, all the teams that have yet to win a stage will be eager to get one of their guys in an early breakaway. We can expect Quick Step to do its best to put a rider into one of those early efforts, especially after Carlos Barredos’ disappointment yesterday.

    Given their meager opportunities at this Tour, the sprinters are likely to eager the kill. Think of the names that have yet to get a stage win, including Robert Forster, Robbie Hunter and maybe even Robbie McEwen.
    Subscribe to VeloNews and you could win a Wilier bike!

  • 12:54 PM: A tight race on GC

    With tomorrow’s 53km time trial, the outcome of this Tour is still far from settled.
    Overall
    1. Carlos Sastre (ESP), CSC at 79:16min14sec
    2. Frank Schleck (LUX), CSC at 1:24
    3. Bernhard Kohl (AUT), Gerolsteiner at 1:33
    4. Cadel Evans (AUS), Silence-Lotto at 1:34
    5. Denis Menchov (RUS), Rabobank at 2:39
    6. Christian Vande Velde (USA), Garmin-Chipotle at 4:41
    7. Alejandro Valverde (ESP), Caisse d’Epargne at 5:35
    8. Samuel Sanchez (ESP), Euskaltel-Euskadi at 5:52
    9. Tadej Valjavec (SLO), Ag2r at 8:10
    10. Vladimir Efimkin (RUS), Ag2r at 8:24

    Today’s stage doesn’t appear to be the sort that will shake up the overall standings, but you never know. Riders hoping for a spot on the podium in Paris will have to remain attentive throughout.

  • 12:56 PM: The race for the green jersey

    It’s not settled yet, but Rabobank’s Oscar Freire appears to be on his way to his first green jersey, a prize he can add to the three rainbow jerseys he’s earned over his career.
    Points
    1. Oscar Freire (ESP), Rabobank 229pts
    2. Thor Hushovd (NOR), Credit Agricole 180
    3. Erik Zabel (GER), Milram 176
    4. Kim Kirchen (LUX), Team Columbia 145
    5. Fabio-Leonardo Duque (COL), Cofidis 144
    6. Alejandro Valverde (ESP), Caisse d’Epargne 123
    7. Robert Hunter (RSA), Barloworld 115
    8. Romain Feillu (FRA), Agritubel 114
    9. Robbie McEwen (AUS), Silence-Lotto 105
    10. Cadel Evans (AUS), Silence-Lotto 93

  • 12:58 PM: KOM settled

    As long as Bernhard Kohl makes it across the finish line in Paris on Sunday, the young Austrian has a lock on this Tour’s polka-dot jersey. Simply put, Kohl’s lead over Carlos Sastre is greater than the 13 KOM points remaining in this Tour:
    King of Mountains
    1. Bernhard Kohl (AUT), Gerolsteiner 125pts
    2. Carlos Sastre (ESP), CSC 80
    3. Frank Schleck (LUX), CSC 80
    4. Thomas Voeckler (FRA), Bouygues Telecom 65
    5. John-Lee Augustyn (RSA), Barloworld 61
    6. Sebastian Lang (GER), Gerolsteiner 60
    7. Alejandro Valverde (ESP), Caisse d’Epargne 58
    8. Stefan Schumacher (GER), Gerolsteiner 54
    9. Remy Di Gregorio (FRA), Francaise des Jeux 52
    10. Egoi Martinez (ESP), Euskaltel-Euskadi 50

  • 01:02 PM: The white jersey

    As yesterday’s late attack from Roman Kreuziger – winner of the Tour de Suisse – shows, there is still a contest when it comes to determining the winner of the best young rider contest. Andy Schleck’s quick response also indicates that the race for the White Jersey, like the contest for the yellow, will depend on tomorrow’s time trial. Today’s stage is unlikely to affect that contest:
    Best young riders (overall)
    1. Andy Schleck (LUX), CSC at 79:26:18
    2 Roman Kreuziger (CZE), Liquigas at 1:58
    3. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA), Liquigas at 15:35
    4 Maxime Monfort (BEL), Cofidis at 24:44
    5. Eduardo Gonzalo (ESP), Agritubel at 1:04:47
    6. Thomas Lovkvist (SWE), Team Columbia at 1:15:28
    7. John-Lee Augustyn (RSA), Barloworld at 1:20:09
    8. Remy Di Gregorio (FRA), Francaise des Jeux at 1:21:23
    9. Peter Velits (SVK), Milram at 1:37:17
    10. Luis Leon Sanchez (ESP), Caisse d’Epargne at 1:43:46

  • 01:06 PM: Today’s start

    Riders are assembling at the line at the village departe and should be rolling off the line for a ride through today’s longer-than-usual 8.7km neutral zone. They will be leaving the village at 1:10 and are expected to hit the official start at around 1:30.

    We can expect early attacks from teams hoping for a stage win in this Tour. We predict that if any break forms without a Quick Step rider, for example, we can be sure the Belgian team will be chasing it down. Quick Step is taking a lot of heat back home for having performed as poorly as it has in this Tour.

  • 01:09 PM: Drop us a line

    If you have a comment, question or complaint, feel free to hit the “Contact our editors” link below the live update window.

    We promise to read them all, answer as many as we can and even post a few during the day’s report.

  • 01:15 PM: Today’s stage

    is marked by two rated climbs:
    The Category 3 La Croix-du-Sud, which begins soon after the start and summits at 17.5km.
    The Cat 4 Cote de la Croix-Rouge, which summits at 42km.

    The day’s two intermediate sprints, come later in the stage
    Chantelle (102.5km)
    Commentry (143.5km).

  • 01:24 PM: Rolling

    the peloton left the village departe at 1:10 – a sight you really should see some day – and riders are casually rolling through Roanne. Christian Prudhomme is standing through the sunroof of his bright red race director’s car – the best seat in the house – and will drop the starting flag at km 0. We are still on schedule for a 1:30 start.

    We’re betting on early attacks.

  • 01:27 PM: Reader comment

    Sue in South Africa writes in to say:

    Sitting here in Durban (RSA) and this is the day for Robbie Hunter – watch out guys he is going to take today stage win!!! And how’s about our John – Lee – brilliant going for his 1st tour! You can see we breed em tough here in SA – that is why we say “Africa is not for sissies”!!!

    We have to agree, Sue. The Live Update Guy spent some time in South Africa and Namibia this year and remains impressed by the terrain, the people and riders he met while there. African riders are continuing to make an impact on the Tour and we look forward to that continuing.

  • 01:31 PM: And we have a bike race

    And we have a bike race.
    There are 149 riders in the peloton. As you probably know, despite his heroic struggle to finish yesterday, Damiano Cunego’s injuries were too serious to allow him to continue and he did not sign in today.

  • 01:33 PM: Attacks

    there have been several attempts, but no successful breaks, as of yet. The peloton is at the 2.5km mark.

  • 01:35 PM: The white jersey race

    As we mentioned, the white jersey contest comes down to how the two leaders will fare in tomorrow’s time trial. The only real indicator we have is how each performed on stage 4’s 29.5km in Cholet:
    20. Andy Schleck (LUX), CSC 1:29
    34. Roman Kreuziger (CZE), Liquigas, at 1:51

  • 01:36 PM: At 5km

    the attacks continue, although none has yet succeeded.

  • 01:37 PM: On the climb

    The speed is really high and no one has managed to get a gap.

    The peloton is at km7 and the peloton is not letting anyone get a jump.

  • 01:39 PM: Through La Bratiere

    The peloton is working its way up La Croix-du-Sud. Still now successful breaks. We have about 10km of the climb remaining, so we could see some action on this 11km climb. At 3.7 percent, it’s not steep enough to put any of the GC boys under pressure.

  • 01:42 PM: At 9km

    the peloton is ticking along quite quickly. Every dig has been neutralized.

  • 01:45 PM: At 11km

    the peloton appears unwilling to allow a break to develop.

  • 01:47 PM: Yesterday’s search

    As we mentioned yesterday, French customs officers pulled the advertising vehicle driven by Johnny Schleck – father to Andy and Frank – out of the commercial caravan. After a lengthy search, police found nothing and let him on his way. It was one of the many weird moments in the Tour and, we have to admit, we’re glad that nothing came of it.

  • 01:47 PM: Four

    riders have gained a very slight advantage on the climb. The gap is small enough that Race Radio has not yet read off numbers.

  • 01:51 PM: Reader questions

    We’ve received a few notes asking about the status of “Herbie.” Well, that tangent didn’t appear to be too popular with quite a few of you – we have to admit we get a bit punchy after three weeks of this – so we will only say that the hamster has been replaced and our servers are up and running… with a clean replacement. Herbie… well, he’s gone, fired and facing a two-year suspension, which is well beyond the average life expectancy of his species.

    Herbie, we hardly knew ye
    Graham Watson photo

  • 01:52 PM: Schumy

    Steffan Schumacher (Gerolsteiner) is one of the four escapees. Man, he must be going for the Jacky Durand award this year.

    The others are
    96. Alessandro Ballan (ITA), Lampre at 2:29:30
    33. Pierrick Fedrigo (FRA), Bouygues Telecom at 49:26
    50. Egoi Martinez (ESP), Euskaltel-Euskadi at 1:32:31

    They only have 10 seconds.

  • 01:55 PM: At the top of the climb

    our four escapees have just 30 seconds on the field.

  • 01:58 PM: Quick Step

    tried to through Gert Steegmans into the mix, but he’s been caught.

    Our four leaders remain 35 seconds ahead of the field at the 18.5km mark.

  • 02:01 PM: Schumacher

    feisty character that he is, took the top points on the climb.

    Fredrigo was second, Ballan third and Martinez fourth. Points on a Cat 3 KOM start with four points and are awarded in declining order after that.

  • 02:04 PM: The four leaders

    are now at 22km and they still have a 35-second lead.

    Quick Step is pushing the pace. These boys want a stage win.

  • 02:06 PM: Credit Agricole

    is now also trying to send a rider up there, but they’ve had no luck.

    The leaders are at 24km and they’ve extended their lead to 1:05.

    Our four leaders are:
    26. Stefan Schumacher (GER), Gerolsteiner at 40:08
    33. Pierrick Fedrigo (FRA), Bouygues Telecom at 49:26
    50. Egoi Martinez (ESP), Euskaltel-Euskadi at 1:32:31
    96. Alessandro Ballan (ITA), Lampre at 2:29:30

  • 02:08 PM: Having passed through

    a big intersection, our leaders are now at 26km, with an advantage of 1:10.

  • 02:12 PM: At 29km

    the four leaders are not being given a lot of room to work. They have a 1:00 lead and Credit Agricole and Quick Step are setting tempo in the peloton.

  • 02:15 PM: 31km

    and the lead is holding at 1:00.

    The wind is still light, but definitely coming from the northeast, making a slight crosswind.

  • 02:19 PM: At 35km

    the foursome’s advantage is still at just 1:00.

    These boys are not getting much of a leash and there are those in the peloton intent upon yanking it back.

  • 02:22 PM: At 39km

    the leaders are approaching the day’s second climb, the Cat. 4 Cote de la Croix-Rouge. The summit comes at 42km. The four still enjoy only a 1:00 lead.

  • 02:27 PM: On the climb

    our four leaders are 1:05 ahead of the field on this short 1.4km cote.

  • 02:27 PM: Over the top

    The leaders are done with the climb. We’ll get a good time check when the peloton reaches the summit:
    1. Stefan Schumacher (Gerolsteiner) 3 points
    2. Pierrick Fedrigo (Bouygues Telecom) 2 points
    3. Alessandro Ballan (Lampre) 1 point
    4. Egoi Martinez (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Zip, nada, zero… a goose egg

  • 02:31 PM: The peloton crests

    at 1:02.

  • 02:32 PM: At 46km

    the peloton has pulled back more time. The four leaders are now just 57 seconds ahead of the field.

  • 02:36 PM: At 48km

    the gap is now down to 46 seconds. The speed on this hilly opening hour has been quite brisk, averaging more than 45kph and it appears there is pleny of muscle in the peloton intent upon seeing this break fail. We’re betting on the peloton.

  • 02:37 PM: Liquigas and Quick Step

    and Caisse d’Epargne are really driving this chase. The gap at the 51km mark is now down to 40 seconds.

  • 02:41 PM: 37 seconds

    At 54km the gap has been cut to 37 seconds.

  • 02:42 PM: Near the town of

    Carrefour, the peloton is closing in fast.

  • 02:44 PM: A downhill chase

    the peloton and the leaders are on the short downhill at 58km. The gap is holding at around 36 seconds.

  • 02:49 PM: The peloton

    is charging hard. The gap is down to 28 seconds at the 63km mark.

  • 02:50 PM: In Vichy

    The peloton has narrowed the gap to 23 seconds.

  • 02:52 PM: 22 seconds

    The break and the peloton are both on the long bridge over the river Allier.

  • 02:53 PM: The gap is now

    just 15 seconds.

  • 02:56 PM: 10 seconds

    It’s nearly over.

  • 02:57 PM: The catch

  • 02:58 PM: Liquigas and Quick Step

    having done a lot of the work are going to try something… but no luck.

  • 02:59 PM: Attack, Attack, Attack

    There are several break attempts, but nuthin yet.

  • 03:02 PM: Two riders

    have a tiny gap.

    They are Geoffroy Lequatre (Agritubel) and Sebastian Langeveld (Rabobank)… well, nooo they don’t.

    Cofidis’s Chavanel takes a dig, but he’s not getting far, either.

  • 03:04 PM: Correction

    That was Leonardo Duque from Cofidis. Anyway, he powered on, looked over his shoulder and saw 148 riders about 10 meters behind him. He’s still trying, but we’re not betting the rent.

    He’s caught… and nowChavanel tries.

  • 03:07 PM: Chavanel

    is a feisty fella. He’s fighting to hold a four-second lead, but he’s not making any progress. He is now at the 76km mark.

  • 03:10 PM: Reader question

    Reader Jim G. in Colorado writes in to ask:

    can you explain negative points in the green jersery competition?

    Ahhh yess… the famous negative points. The race jury has the option of imposing all sorts of penalties for infractions. In addition to time penalties and fines in euros, they often impose point penalties, taking points away from a rider… even when he hasn’t earned any.

  • 03:11 PM: Roy

    Jeremy Roy (Francaise des Jeux) has joined Chavanel and the two now have a 17-second lead on the field.

  • 03:13 PM: Roy and Chavanel

    are just up the road. If they look back, they have a big 147-rider mass right behind them as they reach the 82km mark.

  • 03:17 PM: Our leaders

    are now 1:15 ahead of the field. These two now have a bigger advantage than the day’s first break ever managed. The two leaders are at the 85km mark.

  • 03:18 PM: Drop us a line

    If you have a comment, question or complaint, feel free to hit the “Contact our editors” link below the live update window.

    We promise to read them all, answer as many as we can and even post a few during the day’s report.
    Subscribe to VeloNews and you could win a Wilier bike!

  • 03:19 PM: The peloton

    isn’t chasing. The two leaders are now 2:00 ahead of the peloton. They both just zoomed through the feedzone, without grabbing lunch. The peloton, however, will be grabbing lunch and the chase has slowed.

  • 03:21 PM: Our leaders

    are now a full 2:44 ahead of the peloton as they speed through Saint Didier La Foret. 77km remaining.

  • 03:24 PM: LUNCH!

    The peloton has crusied through the feedzone, without incident. Riders are gnoshing on an assortment of energy bars, dried fruit, small cakes or even sandwiches. It’s all a matter of choice for riders and their teams.

    If someone misses the feed – or in the case of a GC leader who doesn’t want to risk grabbing a bag at 40kph – they can get food from team cars or teammates.

  • 03:27 PM: Urrrp!

    Well with lunch over, the peloton is getting back to work. Roy and Chanvanel took full advantage of the the feedzone and built their lead up to 4:30 with 72km remaining.

  • 03:30 PM: Cooperation

    Our two leaders are working very well together, sharing the load and upping their advantage to five minutes. Are the sprinters’ teams going to accept that? We’ll see. 69km to go.

  • 03:35 PM: Reader question

    Alex from Michigan writes in to ask a question we get quite often here:

    Why do some of the racers stuff newspapers in the front of their jersey’s on the decents?

    Well, while we pick up copies of L’Equipe to read the latest doping news, riders on top of the big cols use the paper for more utilitarian purposes. On the ride up, no matter what the weather, the generate a lot of heat and get quite sweaty. The newspaper works well to block the wind. In this day-and-age, with the advent of hi-tech fabrics, one would think that there would be a better – although more expensive – solution, but newspaper works well. It’s stiff enough to shove up a jersey and no one cares if they lose a newspaper when they toss it off to the side of the road at the bottom.

  • 03:37 PM: With 65km remaining

    our two leaders are now 4:53 ahead of the field. The peloton may not let them get much more than five minutes today.

    For Patrick O’Grady fans – and hey, who ain’t? – we wanted to let you know that our resident crank has penned a new edition of his column: Dog Breath

  • 03:42 PM: The sprint in Chantelle

    the two leaders are through the sprint at 102km. The peloton is now 4:45 back.

  • 03:47 PM: 4:19

    The peloton is now working at trimming the lead. Our leaders are 57.5km from the finish and they are 4:19 ahead of the field, down from a peak of 5:00 about 14km ago.

  • 03:51 PM: Reader comment

    Jeffrey in Minnesota writes in to say

    In response to the “newspaper” question. Being a cold weather rider, (in Minnesota USA) more than once I’ve stuffed something down my pants for much the same reason…

    Well, as a Wyoming resident, I, too, have resorted to gloves and socks, which makes quite the odd impression at the coffee shop when you forget to take them out after a long ride.

  • 03:57 PM: Call of nature

    We see that a couple of riders taking a quick break, which brings up a topic raised by reader

    When the riders need to take their nature break do they actually pull over to the side of the rode or is it in transit. As I was watching coverage on Versus yesterday it looked as if Burghardt was ‘multi-tasking’.
    D.D from Pennsylvania

    Yes, yes he was. It reminds us of the most impressive performance we saw when we drove past Djamolidine Abdoujaporov doing it while going uphill on a stage in the 1996 Tour. For those of us with “shy bladders” we would find either an especially difficult task with the TV cameras nearby.

  • 03:58 PM: The gap

    With 52km remaining, the peloton has cut the leaders’ advantage to 3:55.

  • 04:02 PM: CSC

    is at the front of the peloton. While the race leader’s team has traditional tempo duties in the field, the CSC boys have no reason to reel this one in. It will be up to the sprinters’ teams to close the gap as the finish approaches.

  • 04:06 PM: On that unrated climb

    With 49km remaining our two leaders are working their way up the unrated climb you can see on the profile.

    The gap has moved out to 4:20.

  • 04:12 PM: With 44km remaining

    the two leaders are over that unrated bump. The peloton – behind CSC – is working up the climb. The gap is now up to 4:40.

  • 04:16 PM: Reader question

    Kim writes in to ask:

    The unrated climb seems to be not insignificant. Why is it unrated?
    The ranking of climbs is determined by promoters and there are many climbs that are worthy of a Cat. 3 or Cat. 4 designation that never offer points. Conversely, we’ve see a slight rise in a corn field offering Cat. 4 points. It is arbitrary.

  • 04:17 PM: Back up to

    five minutes, the two leaders are 40.5km from the finish. If the sprinters’ teams want this one, they will have to step up and chase. We are beyond the magic minute-per-10km formual for a reasonable pace to make a catch.

  • 04:22 PM: Barloworld

    has taken up chase duties. They must be hoping Robbie Hunter has a shot today. That would make our South African viewers cheer. What the heck, we’ll cheer him on, too. Okay, Tania?

  • 04:24 PM: With 34km

    our two leaders are holding on to a 5:00 lead. The pace in the peloton is picking up and we may see that gap drop. Too late? We’ll see.

  • 04:27 PM: With 32km

    the gap is back under 5:00. The peloton is still led by the Barloworld team.

  • 04:28 PM: 4:40

    and 32km to go.

  • 04:30 PM: Fabian

    Double world time trial champion Fabian Cancellara has extended his contract with the CSC-Saxo Bank cycling team by another three years, until 2011.

    Cancellara, who will begin as the favourite for the penultimate stage time trial of the Tour de France Saturday, has won some of cycling’s biggest one-day races with the Danish team run by Bjarne Riis.

    “It means a lot to me that my future is secure with Team CSC Saxo Bank,” said Cancellara.

  • 04:35 PM: What’s for dinner?

    Well, we know what the (remaining) guys on Saunier Duval will be eating. It appears that the team will be co-sponsored by the American Beef Council, the group responsible for promoting the consumption of American beef both in the U.S. and abroad.

    So Saunier Duval-Scott becomes Scott-American Beef.

  • 04:36 PM: Liquigas

    Milram and Quick Step are joining in the effort. The gap, with 25km remaining is 4:12.

  • 04:40 PM: Hey here’s a name from the past

    Danish cyclist Michael Rasmussen said Friday he will appeal the decision of a Utrecht court which awarded him 665,000 euros (one million dollars) against his former Rabobank team for the way he was kicked off their 2007 Tour de France team.

    The 34-year-old, who instituted proceedings for unlawful dismissal is demanding damages of 5.5 million euros, said: “We’re appealing the decision from Utrecht. My advisors and I agreed on that yesterday.”

    Okay, enough of news from the Chicken.

    Our two leaders are at the days’s second sprint mark, meaning they’re 22km from the finish. The gap is down to 3:39.

  • 04:43 PM: Oooooo

    Harold H writes in regarding the Beef team;

    Does this mean they’ll have a jersey on their jersey?

  • 04:45 PM: With 18km

    remaining, the gap is still 3:20. We’re beginning to place our bets on these guys making it. We’ve been wrong before, though.

  • 04:48 PM: Vroooooom!

    The peloton is really pouring it on, but with 16km remaining, the leaders have 3:00.

  • 04:50 PM: A moooooooving observation

    Reader Jason B writes in to ask:

    Is there any truth to the rumor that Scott-American Beef will soon be announcing a big signing for next year…Cattle Evans?

    Oh man, that was awful.

  • 04:51 PM: 14km

    and the gap is 3:05.

    These two are sharing the load and we won’t be seeing the sort of wankin’ that Barredo was trying to pull at the finish yesterday.

  • 04:54 PM: Milram, Quick Step

    are leading the chase. Too little too late. We have to think so. The gap is 2:58 and there are only 11km remaining.

  • 04:58 PM: Milram

    is still pounding hard at the front, but the reality check is:
    2:53 with 7.5km to go.

    Slow down boys… stick a fork in that chase. It’s done. Fuggetaboutit

  • 04:59 PM: Six kilometers

    to go and the gap is 2:45.

  • 05:00 PM: five km

    to go and the gap is 2:37. Chavanel and Roy continue to cooperate.

  • 05:01 PM: Four kilometers to go

    the gap is 2:20. The two leaders are still cooperating.

  • 05:03 PM: Three kilometers

    and the gap is now 2:15. Our two leaders are still working together… saving the games for the final kilometer.

  • 05:04 PM: Two kilometers

    and the gap is 2:05. These two are playing well together.

  • 05:05 PM: The last kilometer

    and the peloton is 1:58 back.

  • 05:07 PM: And here comes the sprint

    Chavanel and Roy are eyeing each other…. Chavanel goes and … he wins it!

  • 05:09 PM: The field sprint

    and the peloton comes in at 1:15.

    Let’s watch for today’s podium presentation. It should be good, since Bernard Hinault has been very critical of Chavanel in the French press lately and the Badger is the first in the traditional handshake line.

  • 05:17 PM: Stage Results

    1. Sylvain Chavanel (F), Cofidis
    2. Jeremy Roy (F), Francaise des Jeux
    3. Gerald Ciolek (G), Columbia at 1:13
    4. Erik Zabel (G), Milram
    5. Heinrich Haussler (G), Gerolsteiner
    6. Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis
    7. Filippo Pozzato (I) Liquigas
    8. Thor Hushovd (N), Credit Agricole
    9. Robert Forster (G) Gerolsteiner
    10. Julian Dean (NZ), Garmin-Chipotle

  • 05:19 PM: With no change in GC

    the Tour comes down to tomorrow’s time trial. It’s going to be tight.

  • 05:27 PM: On the podium

    Chavanel gets an enthusiastic hand shake from Bernard Hinault. A small chat, follows. All is well. Many smiles.

    As they put another yellow jersey on the shoulders of Carlos Sastre, we’ll sign off and see if Mr. Sastre gets another of those tomorrow. Tune in. We’ll be here.