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January 20/07 9:28 am - Tour Down Under: Stage 4


Posted by Editoress on 01/20/07
 

Tour Down Under - Australia

Stage 40: Willunga to Willunga, 147km

1. Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) Chocolade Jacques - Topsport Vlaanderen, 3;25:38
2. Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team,
3. Martin Elmiger (Sui) AG2r Prevoyance,
4. Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team CSC,
5. Fabrizio Guidi (Ita) Barloworld,
6. Sebastian Siedler (Ger) Team Milram,
7. Hilton Clarke (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team,
8. Lars Bak (Den) Team CSC,
9. Andy Flickinger (Fra) Bouygues Telecom,
10. Elia Rigotto (Ita) Team Milram,
11. Karl Menzies (Aus) Australia - UniSA,
12. Laurent Brochard (Fra) Bouygues Telecom,
13. Paolo Longo Borghini (Ita) Barloworld,
14. Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Predictor - Lotto,
15. Yannick Talabardon (Fra) Credit Agricole,
16. Mario Aerts (Bel) Predictor - Lotto,
17. Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Credit Agricole,
18. Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC,
19. Simon Clarke (Aus) SouthAustralia.com-AIS,
20. Eduardo Gonzalo (Esp) Agritube, all s.t.

28. Glen Chadwick (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 0:20
41. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 0:19
57. Darren Lill (RSA) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 2:01
59. Ben Brooks (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 5:06
61. Viktor Rapinski (Blr) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, s.t.
65. Ben Day (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 7:24

GC
1. Martin Elmiger (Sui) AG2r Prevoyance, 14:02:15
2. Karl Menzies (Aus) Australia - UniSA, at 0:01
3. Lars Bak (Den) Team CSC, 0:08
4. Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Predictor - Lotto, 0:10
5. Gustav Larsson (Swe) Unibet.com, 0:18
6. Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC, 0:47
7. Gene Bates (Aus) SouthAustralia.com-AIS, s.t.
8. Paolo Longo Borghini (Ita) Barloworld, 0:52
9. Yannick Talabardon (Fra) Credit Agricole,
10. Simon Clarke (Aus) SouthAustralia.com-AIS, 1:05
11. Andy Flickinger (Fra) Bouygues Telecom, 2:49
12. Juan Miguel Mercado (Esp) Agritubel, 2:55
13. Mario Aerts (Bel) Predictor - Lotto, 3:05
14. Elia Rigotto (Ita) Team Milram,
15. Nicolas Crosbie (Fra) Bouygues Telecom, 3:12
16. Glen Chadwick (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 3:14
17. Serge Pauwels (Ned) Chocolade Jacques - Topsport Vlaanderen, 3:37
18. Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team CSC, 9:02
19. Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) Chocolade Jacques - Topsport Vlaanderen, 9:10
20. Christophe Edaleine (Fra) Credit Agricole, 9:11

25. Hilton Clarke (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 9:20
28. Viktor Rapinski (Blr) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 10:32
60. Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 26:18
68. Valeriy Kobzarenko (Ukr) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 26:41
78. Darren Lill (RSA) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 28:39
84. Ben Brooks (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 31:44
96. Ben Day (Aus) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 33:46

Points
1. Laurent Brochard (Fra) Bouygues Telecom, 20. pts
2. Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) Chocolade Jacques - Topsport Vlaanderen, 14
3. Viktor Rapinski (Blr) Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 12
4. Martin Elmiger (Sui) AG2r Prevoyance, 12
5. Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC, 10

Mountains
1. Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2r Prevoyance, 28. pts
2. Serge Pauwels (Ned) Chocolade Jacques - Topsport Vlaanderen, 16
3. Gianpaolo Cheula (Ita) Barloworld, 16
4. Heath Blackgrove (NZl) New Zealand National Team, 16
5. Gustav Larsson (Swe) Unibet.com, 12

U23
Under 23. Classification

1. Simon Clarke (Aus) SouthAustralia.com-AIS, 14:03:20
2. Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Unibet.com, at 9:25
3. Matthew Goss (Aus) Team CSC, 11:58
4. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) SouthAustralia.com-AIS, 15:38
5. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Barloworld, 21:34

Team GC
1. SouthAustralia.com-AIS, 41:45:56
2. Team CSC, at 3:35
3. Unibet.com, 15:04
4. Bouygues Telecom, 18:27
5. Credit Agricole, 18:46

8. Navigators Insurance Cycling Team, 38:39

2007 Tour Down Under set for spectacular final stage battle for overall honours
Courtesy Tour Down Under

Swiss rider Martin Elmiger (AG2R Prevoyance) has stolen the race lead in the 2007 Tour Down Under after claiming a two second bonus by finishing third on today's 147 kilometre fourth stage out and back from Willunga. He is now one second ahead of overnight leader Karl Menzies (UniSA Australia) with two more riders within ten seconds of the lead promising a spectacular battle in Sunday's final stage.

"Tomorrow is the final, it's very close, we will see in the sprints, hopefully I make a good tactic and it's easy for us," said Elmiger of his hopes of defending the narrow lead. "You have to ride clever, I can sprint well and I have to try again for the (time bonuses) - I will fight."

But so too will Menzies who is renowned for his explosive sprint and was disappointed he wasn't able to counter Elmiger's sprint today.

"It was a bit of a hectic sprint, there were a few guys doing some stupid stuff at the finish," said Menzies. "He slipped through there, I don't know.

"It wasn't me, it was the team....I struggled up there, but they did all the work today and set me up," said Menzies noting the efforts of Rob McLachlan and Chris Jongewaard to get him back up with the contenders in the final kilometres after he and Team CSC's top ranked pair failed to get in the front group on the climb up Old Willunga Hill. "It's going to be a cracker day tomorrow, that's for sure."

"It isn't over yet, it's very winnable - it's not going to be easy, nothing ever is, but we have the firepower," said UniSA team manager Dave Sanders recalling the opening stage of the Tour into Tanunda. "Elmiger was incredulous after the stage saying to Karl (Menzies) - 'You sprinted for 600m!' - and Karl said 'Yep I can do that'.

"Now he'll just have to do it again tomorrow."

Stage four honours went to Belgian Pieter Ghyllebert (Chocolade Jacques) who gave the Chocolade Jacques team it's second stage win of the tour sprinting clear of a group of 24 riders to cross the finish in a time of 3h25m38s. Uzbekistan rider Sergey Lagutin (Navigators Insurance) was second and Elmiger pipped South Australian Stuart O'Grady (Team CSC) for third place.

"Now I have my team-mate (Jens Renders) who goes 2km from the finish with me on his wheel, he goes to 300m and then I attack and nobody came over (the top) of me," said Ghyllebert who was second behind his team mate Steven Caethoven on stage two into Hahndorf. "Two days ago I was also very strong and maybe if I went from 600m by myself I would normally win, but it was the plan for my team-mate to win.

"Today it was my turn," said Ghyllebert whose father Johan was one of the finest cyclo-cross cyclists of his generation. "For our team it's fantastic we can come here and to win two stages."

The weather was wet and windy for most of the stage which began with numerous early attacks until things settled down when a group of 13 riders, none a threat to the top ten ranked overall, established a lead.

An estimated 70,000 crowded into vantage points along the route as the riders battled strong crosswinds and intermittent downpours of rain.

1997 World Champion, Frenchman Laurent Brochard (Bouyges Telecom) was in the lead group, with the aim of taking over the lead in the SA Lotteries Sprint classification and picked up four points for second place at the first intermediate sprint at Snapper Point (58.8km) behind Dutchman Hans Dekkers (Agruitubel) with Australian Matt Wilson (Unibet.com) third.

For the next 50 kilometres the lead group of 13 maintained an advantage of between two and three minutes as the peloton bided its time waiting for the only climb of the day up Old Willunga Hill.

Along the way Brochard achieved his aim of the sprint classification lead winning the second intermediate sprint on the third pass through Snapper Point (100.7km). Dekkers crossed second and New Zealand mountain biker, Clinton Avery, was third.

With the climb looming the peloton roared into life and started the chase in earnest. The pressure was on up Old Willunga Hill, where thousands braved the rain to cheer on the riders.

Three of the riders from the lead group, Heath Blackgrove (NZL), Belgian Glenn D'Hollander (Chocolade Jacques), and Frenchman Laurent Brochard (Bouyges Telecom) were one, two, three over the summit, but the main contenders were not far behind.

On the descent a group formed with notable absentees being the race leader Karl Menzies, third ranked Lars Bak (Team CSC) and his team mate Luke Roberts who was sitting in sixth place overall at the start of the day.

That prompted an aggressive chase by both CSC and UniSA Australia who managed to bring their top riders back to the front before the finish line.

The SA Lotteries Sprint leader is now Laurent Brochard (Bouyges Telecom) with the lead in the 'A Brilliant Blend' King of the Mountain competition still with Samuel Dumoulin (AG2R-Prevoyance).
Simon Clarke (SouthAustralia.com-AIS) maintains his lead in the 'Share the Road' Best Young Rider classification and the 'Century 21' Most Aggressive Rider for Stage Four was Belgian Glenn D'Hollander (Chocolade Jacques). SouthAustralia.com-AIS has increased its lead in the Bartercard Teams Classification to be 3mnin35sec ahead with one stage remaining.

The final race of the three race UniSA Women's Criterium Series was contested today at Snapper Point and won by Victorian Jenny MacPherson ahead of Tasmanian Belinda Goss and Victorian Peta Mullens. MacPherson's win gave her the overall series crown for the third straight year.

Sunday will see the 107 remaining riders contest the final stage of the 2007 Tour Down Under on the 90 kilometre Adelaide City Council circuit. All eyes will be on the start finish line in King William Rd where time bonuses (3, 2 & 1 second) will be up for grabs in the intermediate sprints at the end of laps eight and 12. The final sprint at the end of lap 20 offers six, four and two seconds to the top three across the line. Climbing points will also be up for grabs on Montefiore Hill on laps ten and 15 where Dumoulin will be out to protect his 12 point lead in the King of the Mountain Classification.

 


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