Friday, July 17, 2009
Movin' On Up
France — Garmin-Slipstream’s two contenders for the overall standings endured a nasty day in the mountains Friday to solidify their top-10 positions in the Tour de France. Stage 13, a 200km race from Vittel to Colmar, was marked by rain and five categorized climbs.
Austrian Heinrich Haussler won the stage on a solo breakaway, and Garmin-Slipstream riders Bradley Wiggins and Christian Vande Velde held their ground against the GC favorites. After Astana rider Levi Leipheimer was forced to abandon with a broken wrist, an injury he sustained in a crash near the end of Thursday’s Stage 12, Wiggins moved up a spot to fourth and Vande Velde to seventh.
The rain-soaked stage featured five climbs, including the Cat. 1 Col du Platzerwasel, about 60km from the finish, then the Cat. 3 Col du Bannstein and the Cat. 2 Col du Firstplan. With a breakaway up ahead, a select group of GC favorites formed over the Platzerwasel climb and began shedding riders. As the pace heated up, Wiggins fought valiantly to stay in contact and ultimately held his top-five position at the end of the day.
Saturday’s Stage 14 is a relatively flat stage with two Cat. 3 climbs midway through the day.
TOUR DE FRANCE STAGE 13 RESULTS
Vittel to Colmar, 200km
1. Heinrich Haussler (Ger), Cervelo Test Team, 4:56:26
2. Amets Txurruka (Spa), Euskatel-Euskadi, at 4:11
3. Brice Feillu (Fra), Agritubel, at 6:13
4. Sylvain Chavanel (Fra), Agritubel, at 6:31
5. Peter Velits (Svk), Milram, at 6:43
OVERALL STANDINGS AFTER STAGE 13
1. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita), AG2R, 53:30:30
2. Alberto Contador (Spa), Astana, at 0:06
3. Lance Armstrong (USA), Astana, at 0:08
4. Bradley Wiggins (GB), Garmin-Slipstream, at 0:46
5. Andreas Kloden (Ger), Astana, at 0:54
7. Christian Vande Velde (USA), Garmin-Slipstream, at 1:24