September 5/99 6:03 am - Fraser Wins Again!
Posted by Editor on 09/5/99
Fraser Wins Again!
Gord Fraser has taken his second straight stage in the Trans Canada Tour - in the 178 kilometre Trois Rivieres to Montreal stage. This third stage began slowly, with nothing much happening until the 30 kilometre mark, when 3 riders set out on what would be a long day off the front. Alvaro Forner Munoz (Kelme), Scott Guyton (Linda McCartney) and Andreas Walker (Gerolsteiner) managed to take their lead over the relaxed peleton to 6 minutes before there was any reaction. Indeed, with only 25 kilometres to go, the lead was still 4 minutes. However, at this point Mercury, Saturn and race leader Lars Michaelsen's Francaise de Jeux team went to the front and the gap dropped quickly. By the 12 kilometre to go mark the group was all together, and setting up for a sprint finish in old Montreal. Saturn sent off Brian Walton and Levi Leipheimer with a kilometre left, but Mercury soon brought them back. Then it was Fraser's turn to dominate the competition even more than yesterday, as he easily accelerated past race leader Michaelsen to take the stage.
- Michaelsen said what was on the minds of many riders, when he stated that "tomorrow will be a difficult stage, that will really determine the leader." He was, of course, referring to the lengendary Mont Royal circuit in Montreal that has broken many a pair of legs over the years.
- there are a number of injuries already in the field. Levi Leipheimer hurt his elbow in the stage one crash he was involved with in Quebec City - he says that he will be fine for the climb tomorrow. Erik Lyman broke his wrist yesterday in a crash. He raced today with a plastic cast, and finished, but tomorrow may be a different story... Dominique Perras crashed badly today and hurt both knees. He also finished, but we will have to see if he starts in the morning.
- The police support is remarkable. Approximately 30 police motorcycles escorted the race into Montreal, and each stage has had 24 motorcycles assigned to it on the road. North American riders aren't used to this kind of support...