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Leading contenders praise Armstrong’s stunning coup...(23 posts)

Leading contenders praise Armstrong’s stunning coup...Uprwstsdr
Jul 22, 2003 12:11 PM

"At the end of yet another incredible day of racing, the main contenders for the overall title were unanimous in their praise for Lance Armstrong unmatchable effort at Luz Ardiden.

Second-placed finisher Iban Mayo was hoping to add this summit to his Alpe d'Huez victory, but even the support of tens of thousands of orange-clad Basque fans was not enough to keep him on terms with the American. "I was a bit surprised when Armstrong came after me," said Mayo. "I was looking for the stage win not for the overall victory. But when he came up to me he set a punishing rhythm. It was impossible to follow him."

Team-mate Haimar Zubeldia echoed Mayo. "When Armstrong attacked he snatched all of our strength and hopes away. He hasn't won the Tour yet but the gap might be enough for him now."

Alexandre Vinokourov was the day's major loser, even if he is still relatively safe in the third podium place. "I paid for my efforts of the last few days, but we saw a really strong Armstrong today," said ‘Vino'. "But being strong one day can result in you being weak the next and I've not lost all hope of victory even if it is a long shot now."

Christophe Moreau continued his rise up the overall standings, fifth place on the day moving him up to eighth. "It was very impressive when Armstrong attacked. The guy was really pumped. No one could have followed him and we were all left wondering how much of a gap he was going to establish. It was the proof that great riders don't die."

Ivan Basso, who has slipped quietly up to sixth place overall, was also hugely impressed. "Armstrong did something extraordinary," said the Italian. "He's a very intelligent rider who knows how to control things in all circumstances. Today he rode with impressive calmness and hit the gas at exactly the right moment. He is still the favourite for the Tour.""
My guess is that Vino will attack in Paris nmDougSloan
Jul 22, 2003 12:24 PM
give him a break dont be such Ahole nmcyclopathic
Jul 22, 2003 12:42 PM
what, are you his brother or something?DougSloan
Jul 22, 2003 12:56 PM
It's been discussed nearly every year, even by Phil and Paul. No big deal.
no, it just shows everyone who you are nmcyclopathic
Jul 22, 2003 1:02 PM
Doug, Doug, Doug...shirt
Jul 22, 2003 1:17 PM
We need to go back to the Racing forum where we belong. There's more attitude and less knowledge on this Tour board than all the others combined.

Is not... Is too... Is not... Is too... Is not... Is too... nmnoveread
Jul 22, 2003 1:43 PM
Has anyone but me noticed the size of that guy's head!!94Nole
Jul 22, 2003 12:58 PM
His helmet hardly fits on top with major forehead sticking out.
Limar helmetSpoiler
Jul 22, 2003 9:18 PM
I think it's a F106 or F107 model. They fit like that. They are sized very small and they sit way back.
I like to call it the "newbie chick on a beach cruiser" look.
It's not the helmet! it's his head!CritLover
Jul 22, 2003 9:29 PM
No really, he tips it up, I assumeto keep it off his forehead. Or, he has the biggest frankenstein head in the peleton! This is one of the smallest helmets around. Try measuring 'em.
That attack would probably end with a stick thru his spokes (nm)Uprwstsdr
Jul 22, 2003 12:59 PM
When was the last time something like that happened?Sintesi
Jul 22, 2003 2:28 PM
A real attack in the final stage I mean? Every tour I've seen always ends up in a giant bunch sprint after a freewheeling party into town. It is a legitimate stage with time bonuses to be had. As hard as it might be I suppose it's possible especially in light of the last two weeks. I wouldn't put this past Ullrich or Vino entirely. Can anyone remember a bonafide attack that won the final stage? OR, even better, an attack trying to win the Mailliot Jaune on the last stage?
uh, 2002? remember Rumsas?DougSloan
Jul 22, 2003 2:33 PM
When was the last time something like that happened?flying
Jul 22, 2003 2:38 PM
Just last year.
Rumas tried to up his 2nd place.

copy from cyclenews archive..........

Raimondas Rumsas, still smarting from yesterday's time trial when a bolt came loose in his handlebars after 10km, was not going to finish third on GC behind Joseba Beloki without a fight. He got into this break, which suddenly rode out to a 40 second lead, causing the alarm bells to ring loudly in the ONCE team, who only had 1 minute to play with Beloki's second place.

The peloton on the Champs Elysees
Photo: © AFP
ONCE put all their men on the front to ride down the break, which gradually began to disintegrate. 5 km later, it was over for Rumsas as the pink train swallowed him up. Nine riders managed to stay away for a little while longer, until they too were caught with just over a lap (8 km) to go.

Telekom was doing most of the tempo setting, aided by Credit Agricole and occasionally Lampre-Daikin, who wanted to repeat Jan Svorada's victory of last year. But the attacks continued right to the end, with Serguei Ivanov and never-say-die Raimondas Rumsas accelerating off the front with 6 km to go. They were joined by Cedric Vasseur, but the move was doomed. You have to give Rumsas 10/10 for trying though.
exactly; and people calling me names for even suggesting it? nmDougSloan
Jul 22, 2003 2:46 PM
however, it's generally not acceptableweiwentg
Jul 22, 2003 6:05 PM
at least not for the GC placings. Rumsas said (iirc) he didn't realize he was in the break. maybe he was lying. my feeling is that Vino has more class than that.
but you certainly didn't deserve the name calling.
That's funny. I've watched that DVD twice already.Sintesi
Jul 22, 2003 5:14 PM
I didn't even think of that. I guess so. He was definitely going for it but then there are always attacks like that. Brochard did so as well as I recall. There are several riders that always get off the front for a little while but I guess they never seemed serious to me as they might in other stages.

How about extended attacks? Say before they get into Paris?
Jean Robic...........1947lanterne rouge
Jul 22, 2003 4:18 PM
Jean Robic attacked on the last day of the Tour in 1947 and won the yellow jersey because of it. It was the only time he wore yellow the whole race.
Jean Robic...........1947Sintesi
Jul 22, 2003 5:16 PM
Now that is a cool bit of Tour history. I just bought the official TdF Centennial coffee table book I'll check that out.

Tip o' the cycling cap to Lanterne Rouge.
When was the last time something like that happened?atpjunkie
Jul 22, 2003 7:19 PM
Hinault and Joop I think 1978. The two broke away (Joop needed time) Hinault went with, battled on the champs with the badger winning the sprint. was kinda sad as Hinault could have given him the stage, all he needed was to be close to seal the tour but the badger never yields (unless it's to Lemond)
Rumsas not knowingatpjunkie
Jul 22, 2003 7:22 PM
kinda like not knowing about the drugs in his wife's possession last year or his own system this year. This guy wins the George Bush credibility gap award.
Jul 23, 2003 11:35 AM
and how George Bush credibility award is diff from Darwin award?
none methinks NMatpjunkie
Jul 23, 2003 2:01 PM