Road

Live Report Archive: 2009 AToC prologue

02:22 PM: Good day and welcometo VeloNews.com's Live Coverage of the Prologue Time Trial of the 2009 Amgen Tour of California. Today's route is a largely flat 3.9-kilometer (2.4-mile for our conversion-challenged readers) route on the streets of California's capital city, Sacramento. Riders will be lining up to start soon, with the first rider - Rock Racing's Glen Chadwick - rolling out of the starting gate at 1:30 p.m. local time.

  • 02:22 PM: Good day and welcome

    to VeloNews.com’s Live Coverage of the Prologue Time Trial of the 2009 Amgen Tour of California.

    Today’s route is a largely flat 3.9-kilometer (2.4-mile for our conversion-challenged readers) route on the streets of California’s capital city, Sacramento.

    Riders will be lining up to start soon, with the first rider – Rock Racing’s Glen Chadwick – rolling out of the starting gate at 1:30 p.m. local time.

  • 02:40 PM: And we have several riders on course

    With Chadwick already done, we will see riders starting and finishing at about one-minute intervals for the next hour and 45 minutes. It will be the biggies – Hushovd, Boonen, Hincapie, Armstrong, Cancellara, Basso, Landis and Leipheimer – who will be the ones starting toward the end of the afternoon.

  • 02:48 PM: Those last riders

    Here’s a look at the final 16 riders who will be rolling off of the start later today: 120. Tom Zirbel Bissell starts at 3:29
    121. Alexandre Moos Bmc starts at 3:30
    122. Thor Hushovd Cervelo starts at 3:31
    123. Rinaldo Nocentini Ag2r starts at 3:32
    124. Robert Gesink Rabobank starts at 3:33
    125. Kim Kirchen Columbia starts at 3:34
    126. Tom Boonen Quick starts at 3:35
    127. George Hincapie Columbia starts at 3:36
    128. Tyler Hamilton Rock starts at 3:37
    129. David Zabriskie Garmin-Slipstream starts at 3:38
    130. Lance Armstrong Astana starts at 3:39
    131. Christian Vande Velde Garmin-Slipstream starts at 3:40
    132. Fabian Cancellara Saxo Bank starts at 3:41
    133. Ivan Basso Liquigas starts at 3:42
    134. Michael Rogers Columbia starts at 3:43
    135. Floyd Landis Ouch starts at 3:44
    136. Levi Leipheimer Astana starts at 3:45

  • 02:53 PM: On a side note

    For those of you who are regular “viewers” of VeloNews.com’s Live updates, The Live Update Guy (LUG) is pleased to be back offering Live coverage of events, in this, the country’s premier road race.

    It may take me a few minutes to get the bugs worked out of my fingers and head, but it’s good to be back.

    In the mean time, if you have a question or comment, feel free to hit the “Contact our editors” button, or if you want a quick response, just mail me direct at Charles@Pelkey.com. Either way, we look forward to hearing from you.

  • 03:01 PM: We see Dominique Rollin

    on the road. He’s been a tough rider here in the U.S. and Cananda and now riding on a big international squad.

    Speaking of Canadians, Svein Tuft (Garmin) has turned in the best time of the day so far, with a 4:37.06. Ben Jaques-Maynes (Bissell) trails by 1.474 seconds.

  • 03:02 PM: Mark Cavendish

    is on route. The man from Manx, best known for his fiercesome sprint, is no slouch when it comes to a short time trial.

  • 03:05 PM: Cavendish

    is flying. Oscar Sevilla (Rock Racing) is on the route. He couldn’t ride here last year, mentioned as a suspect in Operacion Puerto. Well, he’s still a suspect, but he’s riding.

    If you use Twitter, you might start following velonewslive – go to www.twitter.com/velonewslive. Neal Rogers is posting some photos from the scene there today, and we will be looking for more ways to use twitter in our live report this week.

  • 03:09 PM: Cavendish

    managed to finish in second, so far. Tuft is still on top, but Cavendish may be eyeing the yellow jersey in coming days, given that he will clearly be one of the men contesting sprints on these early stages.

    Meanwhile, Sevilla has come in with the day’s 13th best time, so far.

  • 03:11 PM: The crowds

    are huge here today. Do you think that it may have something to do with the appearance of a certain Texan? That many people to see George W. Bush? Wow.

  • 03:18 PM: Steve Cozza

    is on the road. He’s a talented time trialist and he will be doing a bit of recon’ for Garmin teammate Christian Vande Velde.

  • 03:21 PM: Horner

    The Astana man is on the road. He’s a favorite here in Sacramento. Chris, quote-worthy as he is, remains a big favorite among reporters, too.

  • 03:22 PM: Cozza

    finishes with the 14th best so far.

  • 03:26 PM: New Leader

    Mark Renshaw (Columbia) has turned in a 4:36.962.

    Horner finishes with a 4:41.41, the seventh best so far.

  • 03:30 PM: Renshaw is a talent

    Our new race leader – Mark Renshaw (4:36.962) – is a talented track racer but a solid road racer in his own right. He won the overall at last year’s Geelong Bay Classic Series and won a stage at the Tour Down Under.

  • 03:32 PM: Top three

    1. Mark Renshaw (Columbia), 4:36.962
    2. Svein Tuft (Garmin), at 0:00.102
    3. Mark Cavendish (Columbia), at 0:00.816

  • 03:35 PM: Michael Barry

    is on the road. He’s one of our favorite riders … as well as one of our favorite writers. He’s a heckuva guy and we’re going to ignore our duty to be unbiased and cheer him on.

  • 03:38 PM: Top three

    has not changed.
    We still have Mark Renshaw, Svein Tuft and Mark Cavendish. They’re all within one second of Renshaw’s 4:36.962

  • 03:42 PM: Janez Brajkovic

    The Astana rider, a former winner of the Tour of Georgia, is in. Not a top time, but boy that kid can climb.

  • 03:45 PM: How’s the weather?

    There has been some concern about the weather today, but so far, it’s dry and cool. There is a light cloud cover, but so far, nothing has happened as far as rain. There is a bit of wind, but at this point, it’s not enough to be a big factor in the race.

  • 03:50 PM: Sastre

    is out there and nearing the three-quarter mark.
    He is the reigning Tour de France champ, but not a super strong time trialist, especially in a prologue

  • 03:51 PM: Sastre

    finishes with a time of 4:58.5, 61st best and well out of the running for a stage win, when you compare that to Renshaw’s 4:36.962.

  • 03:54 PM: Taylor?

    Watching this prologue makes one wonder what Taylor Phinney could do on a course like this. The 18 year old won the 4k pursuit in 4:15 yesterday at the Copenhagen track World Cup _ a new American record. This prologue course is about a 100 meters shy of 4k and our best time so far is 4:36. Make what you will of the comparison.

  • 03:56 PM: Tom Danielson

    finishes with the 35th best time of the day with a 4:49.

  • 03:57 PM: Thomas Lovkvist

    Columbia’s Lokvist finishes with the 19th best so far… 4:45.

    Our top three are holding their own.

  • 04:00 PM: Our early leaders

    may be secure and happy for a while, but in about half-an-hour, we’re gonna see some serious horsepower taking off here.

  • 04:04 PM: Our top three remain:

    1. Mark Renshaw (Columbia), 4:36.962
    2. Svein Tuft (Garmin), at 0:00.102
    3. Mark Cavendish (Columbia), at 0:00.816

  • 04:06 PM: Man

    these crowds are huge.

  • 04:09 PM: Tyler Farrar

    Is on the road. He was third last year.

  • 04:09 PM: Arnold

    Even if you don’t yet use twitter, you can check out Neal’s picture of Arnold’s jersey in Sacramento this morning here: http://twitpic.com/1hrnk

  • 04:11 PM: Farrar

    is through the 180.

  • 04:13 PM: Tyler Farrar

    finishes with a time of 4:39, the fith best, so far. Not as solid as last year, but anything under 4:40 on this course is good.

  • 04:14 PM: Andy Schleck

    comes in with a 4:52, 54th best.

  • 04:17 PM: Chris Baldwin

    is in and turns in a time of 4:49. He’s wearing what we believe is third variation of the Rock kit today. He’s in the red, black and white. Sevilla had some star-splattered thing and then we’ve also seen that green thing that reminds of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

  • 04:18 PM: Some amazing noise

    We can’t figure out what that really loud noise is out there … a helicopter? An earthquake?

    Oh no, it’s Dave Towle announcing at the finish.

  • 04:23 PM: Rory Sutherland

    Has had a poor ride, finishing with a time that bumped him near the five minute mark.

    Rabobank sprinter – and three-time world champ – Oscar Freire is out on the road.

  • 04:28 PM: Still our top three are

    1. Mark Renshaw (Columbia), 4:36.962
    2. Svein Tuft (Garmin), at 0:00.102
    3. Mark Cavendish (Columbia), at 0:00.816

  • 04:29 PM: JJ Haedo

    Saxo Bank’s sprinter turns in the 15th fastest time of the day.

    American Tom Zirbel is on the road. He’s a real time trial talent.

  • 04:32 PM: The peloton’s most famous retiree

    is hanging around the start house.

    The rain is beginning to fall… but it’s still quite light.

  • 04:33 PM: Robert Gesink

    The Rabobank youngster is ready to start. He’s a solid, solid threat this year.

  • 04:34 PM: No change

    1. Mark Renshaw (Columbia), 4:36.962
    2. Svein Tuft (Garmin), at 0:00.102
    3. Mark Cavendish (Columbia), at 0:00.816

    How long will that last?

    Thor Hushovd is on route.

    Zirbel, by the way, finishes with a 4:37, good enough for fourth. Not bad.

  • 04:36 PM: THOR!!!!

    Hushovd has the new best time of the day. His 4:36.41 is 0:00.921 better than Renshaw.

    Hincapie is now out on the road.

  • 04:39 PM: Gesink

    has turned in a 4:52. Not a bad ride for a guy whose strenghth is climbing.

    Lance Armstrong is about to leave the start house.

  • 04:41 PM: Armstrong

    ison the road.

    Tom Boonen, meanwhile, has turned in a time of 4:36.710. He’s in second.

    Wait … Hincapie just moved past him.

  • 04:42 PM: Our top three

    1. Thor Hushovd (Nor), 4:36.41
    2. George Hincapie (USA), at 0:00.210
    3. Tom Boonen (B), at 0:00.300

  • 04:43 PM: Zabriskie!!!!

    Dave Zabriskie is now our new leader, with a 4:35.557

  • 04:44 PM: Armstrong

    finishes with a time of 4:37.173, the seventh best, so far.

  • 04:45 PM: Landis

    is on the road.

    Christian Vande Velde is done with a time of 4:41, 19th best.

    Leipheimer is on the road and that’s the last rider to leave. We’ll know how the Prologue shakes out within 4:45.

  • 04:47 PM: Holy ….

    … uhhhh
    Fabian Cancellara has just knocked almost THREE SECONDS out of Zabriskie’s time.
    1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), 4:32.909
    2. Dave Zabriskie (USA) Garmin-Slipstream, 00:02.648
    3. Thor Hushovd (N), at 00:03.132

  • 04:48 PM: Landis

    is on his way to the finish.

  • 04:49 PM: Landis finishes with a

    4:53, 89th best of the day.

  • 04:49 PM: One rider remaining

    Levi Leipheimer is heading to the finish.

  • 04:50 PM: Leipheimer

    turns in a 4:34, barely nipping Zabriskie’s time and good enough for second.

  • 04:52 PM: Our top five

    1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Saxo Bank, 4:32.909
    2. Levi Leipheimer (USA), Astana, at 00:01.204
    3. David Zabriskie (USA), Garmin, at 00:02.648
    4. Michael Rogers (Aus), Columbia, at 00:02.790
    5. Thor Hushovd (N), Cervello TestTeam, at 00:03.132

  • 04:54 PM: Well, there you go

    Our top five are some of the most impressive prologue specialists on the planet.
    1. Fabian Cancellara (Swi), Saxo Bank, 4:32.909
    2. Levi Leipheimer (USA), Astana, at 00:01.204
    3. David Zabriskie (USA), Garmin, at 00:02.648
    4. Michael Rogers (Aus), Columbia, at 00:02.790
    5. Thor Hushovd (N), Cervelo TestTeam, at 00:03.132

    That’s quite a list, eh?

    Well, thanks for turning in folks. We look forward to offering our commentary during tomorrow’s Davis to Santa Rosa stage, a long 107 miles.
    We’ll be here. We hope you are, too.