Monday, July 03, 2006

Tour de France 2006 Stage 2

Today was the second longest day of the Tour de France. A 228.5 km ride over two category 3 climbs, three category 4 climbs, and about 140 miles of north eastern France. The race started in Obernai and ended in Esch-sur-Alzette Luxemburg.

At the 1 km point of the race two riders got away on a breakaway and managed to stay away for most of the day. These two guys swooped up most of main sprint and mountain points that were available out on the course. In the end one of them, David De La Fuente, ended the day in the Polka Dot Jersey.

Mostly it was a long hot day of riding. George Hincapie and the discovery team did not make a effort to defend the yellow jersey. This tells me that they have decided that they are in this race for the long haul and not looking for single day glory. This is good news to me.

In the end this was another mass sprint at the end. There was a pile up about 2 km from the finish that split the peloton apart. In the end, the stage was won by the Australian Robbie McEwen.

Thor Hushovd the Norwegian who had his right arm sliced open on the final sprint yesterday had another mishap this afternoon when he slipped his left pedal in the final 30 feet and had to pedal across the line with only one foot on the pedals. He still finished 3rd. This third place finish coupled with a 2 second time bonus out on the road put this scrappy Norwegian back in the yellow jersey for tomorrow.

So how are our Americans cyclists doing after today’s stage?

Pos. No. Name Nat. Team Gap
4 003 HINCAPIE, George USA DSC 00:00:10.000
5 018 ZABRISKIE, David USA CSC 00:00:16.000
11 071 LANDIS, Floyd USA PHO 00:00:21.000
20 064 HORNER, Christopher USA DVL 00:00:27.000
29 011 JULICH, Bobby USA CSC 00:00:30.000
34 016 VANDEVELDE, Christian USA CSC 00:00:33.000
35 041 LEIPHEIMER, Levi USA GST 00:00:33.000
99 066 RODRIGUEZ, Fred USA DVL 00:00:50.000

All serious contenders plus a few extras all within 30 seconds of yellow is good!

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