Posted by Editor on 07/17/01
Tour de France
Don't play poker with Lance Armstrong unless you are prepared to lose your shirt. Today in the first of the mountain stages Armstrong sat at the back of the front group and appeared to be struggling while rival Jan Ullrich's Telekom squad set a strong tempo over 3 major climbs - Category 3 Col du Frene and Beyond Category climbs Col de la Madeleine and Col du Glandon. However, Armstrong showed that it was all a bluff, when he immediately moved onto Ullrich's wheel at the start of L'Alpe d'Huez, the finishing Beyond Category climb.
Telekom had blown Kevin Livingston, Andreas Kloden and Alex Vinkourov getting to this point, and the group of 30+ riders started the 14.1 kilometre climb to the top of L'Alpe d'Huez nearly 7 minutes down on Laurent Roux (Jean Delatour), who had been out in front from the 6 kilometre mark - nearly 190 kilometres at the base of the final climb.
The front group immediately blew apart under Ullrich's tempo, but Armstrong rolled up to Ullrich, literally stared him in the eye for 5 seconds and then, quite simply, rode away. He gobbled up the tiring Roux with 6 kilometres to go and rode on to an incredible victory. Ullrich finished second at 2 minutes, followed by Joseba Beloki (ONCE), Christophe Moreau (Festina) and Oscar Sevilla (Kelme). O'Grady was well, well back and has lost the yellow to another member of the stage 8 break group - Francois Simon (Bonjour), who finished 10 minutes down on Armstrong. Andrei Kivilev (Cofidis) is about 12 minutes behind in second and Armstrong jumps into third, at just over 20 minutes. But there are more mountains to come, including a mountain time trial tomorrow...
Stage 10 - Aix-Les-Bains to L'Alpe d'Huez 209 km
1 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service 6:23:47
2 Jan Ullrich (Ger) Telekom at 1:59
3 Joseba Beloki (Esp) ONCE-Eroski 2:09
4 Christophe Moreau (Fra) Festina 2:30
5 Oscar Sevilla (Esp) Kelme-Costa Blanca 2:54
6 Francisco Mancebo (Esp) iBanesto.com 4:01
7 Laurent Roux (Fra) Jean Delatour 4:03
8 Igor Gonzalez De Galdeano (Esp) ONCE-Eroski
9 Roberto Laiseka (Esp) Euskaltel-Euskadi both s.t.
10 Leonardo Piepoli (Ita) iBanesto.com 4:07
11 Michael Boogerd (Ned) Rabobank 4:37
12 Andrei Kivilev (Kaz) Cofidis 4:39
13 Santiago Botero (Col) Kelme-Costa Blanca 5:07
14 Sven Montgomery (Sui) Francaise Des Jeux 5:09
1 Francois Simon (Fra) Bonjour
2 Andrei Kivilev (Kaz) Cofidis
3. Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service
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