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61st Tour de Romandie - Stage 1 Live
By Staff
Date: 5/2/2007
61st Tour de Romandie - Stage 1 Live

61st Tour de Romandie - Stage 1 Live
On the road to La Chaux de Fonds as  Il Falco and Astana defend...

61st Tour de Romandie - Stage 1
Freiburg - La Chaux-de-Fonds 157.8 km

As we join the race in progress we have 4 who escaped 30 km into the race and built a quick gap of a minute, a few kilometers later they were joined in the break for a break of six. The leaders  gained a maximum advantage of about 6 minutes on the bunch at 60 kms into the race. The 6 are: Chris Anker Sörensen (CSC), Laszlo Bodrogi (Credit Agricole), Laurent Brochard (Bouygues Telecom), Eros Capecchi (Liquigas), Raffaele Ferrara (LPR) and Mauro Facci (Quick Step)  One abandon today Simon Gerrans (Ag2r); Simon still suffers from a crash in the prologue yesterday.

The results of the first KOM are
1. Eros Capecchi (LIQ)
2. Chris Sorensen (CSC)
3. Lazlo Bodrogi (C.A.)
4. Laurent Brochard (BTL)
5. Raffaele Ferrara (LPR).

The gap to the break of six is now 4:25 as the Astana team leads the chase.

60 km to go, the gap of the 6 is 4:16 and the weather has taken a turn for the worse as it starts to rain on the peloton's parade.

Astana is leading the pace of the bunch for race leader Savoldelli. Il Falco won the prologue ahead of Roman Kreuziger and Chris Horner yesterday The leaders are now on the second climb of the day. Savoldelli led the race last year until he had problems with his allergies, the rain may be a welcome relief for Paolo this week.

When we look to the riders in the break we see some very good riders. We have the champion of Hungary Laszlo Bodrogi, a former winner of the baby Giro. Raffaele Ferrara, a former French top class rider with Laurent Brochard and 3 youngsters with Facci, Capecchi and Chris Anker Sörensen. Especially the Danish guy is riding very strong lately. I noticed him in the 1.1 race the Hel van het Mergelland where he was in the break of the day and was able to stay in front until the end. Sijmens won that race but Sörensen finished 13th and won the prize for the most agressive rider.

16:28 CET: The gap is down to 3:38 with 52 km to go

Today is the hearing of Michele Scarponi and Ivan Basso at the head quarters of the CONI. Basso is in his hearing at the moment while Scarponi had his hearing this morning. There are no new facts said Scarponi but stated that he is willing to undergo a DNA test to prove his innocence.

16:35 CET: The leaders are now on the next climb. It's a climb of 5.6 km but not that steep with an average of 4.5%; in the meantime Bodrogi was dropped in front and also Capecchi has problems following the pace.
Brochard at age 39 the oldest rider in the break. Actually he is the oldest rider in this race. Bodrogi loses touch on the climb and struggles while Capecchi regains the lead group.

47 km to go and the leaders have still 2:57 on the bunch as the climb and the chase take its toll on the gap.. The bunch is still led by Astana.

16:44 CET: The group summits with Brochard leading for the max KOM points ahead of Capecchi, Sörensen, Ferrara and Facci. The bunch is on top of the climb and the gap is down to 2.34

40 km to go: Brochard and Eros Capecchi attack and get a gap on their breakmates; Sorensen, Ferrrara and Facci were dropped in the final meters of the climb while the two in front were battling for the KOM points, once over the summit the Brochard and Capecchi pressed their advantage.

Speaking about Laurent Brochard. He is 39 years old and is in his 17th year as a professional now. He won a lot of races and among them a stage in the Tour (1997) and the World Championships in San Sebastian (1997).

34 km to go - The gap comes down to 2:14 with Astana still leading the chase. Laszlo Bodrogi, once the virtual leader on the road today is swept up by the blue and gold of Astana jerseys that lead the peloton.

16:59 CET - 30 km to go, The lead duo Laurent Brochard and Eros Capecchi are on the col de la Tourne with an average of 6% of about 6 km long in distance; Sörensen, Ferrara and Facci are between the lead duo and the peloton. Mcewen is dropped from the back of the peloton.

Attack by Lampre/Fondital's Marco Marzano a Bouygues Telecom rider bridged across to Marzano; it's Olivier Bonnaire. Mauro Facci is caught during the attack and Raffaele Ferrara is swept up by the peloton in swift succession. Only the two leaders and Sorensen have evaded capture at this point.

Marzano and Bonnaire reeled in by the bunch as Astana continues leading the pace with the gap to the leaders now down to 1:39 as Savoldelli's raiders work is rewarded.

17:10 CET: The two leaders are on top of the La Tourne. From here it's about 25 km to the finish. Brochard takes the max KOM points here with Capecchi following him over the summit. Brochard is the leader in the KOM ranking after today.

Chris Sörensen is 3rd on the climb at 20 sec off the leaders and the lead chase is 1:05 as they start the descent. Steve Zampieri attacks!

The peloton chases the Zampieri (Cofidis) the catch is made almost as fast as the attack is launched. The descent of the La Tourne will be ridden with caution as they are slicked by the rains today.

On flatter roads after the descent, attacks fly from the front of the peloton; but the attacks are disorganized and none can get a gap and stick.

16 kms to go We still have Brochard and Capecchi on the escape with Larsson still between the two and the chasing bunch. Veikkanen Attacks and it is the death knell for Larsson. Veikkanen catches the leaders and the peloton sweep the trio up and the peloton is compacto with 15 km to go.

Van Huffel (Predictor-Lotto) in the attack but the others don't let him go. Van Huffel goes again and six riders join him, with 14 km to go, the bunch pulls the 7 back within the kilometer.

17:33 CET: 12 km to go - Atttack, Van Huffel and Francisco Perez  (Caisse d'Epargne); Perez  counters and Van Huffel not able to follow.

10 km to go - Andy Schleck (CSC) and Charly Wegelius in the chase to bridge... the gap to Perez is 18 seconds with 8 km to go. The peloton starts an uncategorized climb and Schleck and Wigelius are pulled back.

The gap of Perez is down to less than 10 seconds. Perez is joined by Gerosteiner's Markus Fothen. The peloton is in confusion with no organized chase for the moment.

17:41 CET: 5 km to go - the duo hold on to their ten second gap.

2 km to go - and Perez and Fothen manage to hold onto their lead. entering the final km the gap is 8 seconds.

800 metres Perez starts his sprint with the peloton coming fast. Fothen wins the sprint from Perez and Reynes with Lorenzetto 4th and Cadel Evans fifth.

Provisional Results
1. Markus Fothen (Gerolsteiner)
2 Francisco Perez  (Caisse d'Epargne)|
3 Vincente Reynes
4 Lorenzetto i
5 Cadel Evans
6. Duque
7 Karsten Kroon
8 Gasparotto
9 Dietziker
10 Eltink

General Classification remains unchanged with Astana's Paolo Savoldelli in charge.

Results to follow when available...

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61st Tour de Romandie - Race Preview
61st Tour de Romandie - Prologue Report

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