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4th Tour of Britain - Prologue Report
 
By Nick Bull
Date: 9/9/2007
4th Tour of Britain - Prologue Report
 

4th Tour of Britain - Stage 1 Prologue Report
Prologue report and post race interview with winner Mark Cavendish. Official Results and General Classifications.

September 9 - 15 2007

 Mark Cavendish took the opening Prologue in this year’s Tour of Britain, nearly two months to the day since a crash in the closing kilometres denied him the chance to take a Tour de France stage on home soil. The Manxman completed the remarkably short course, totaling a mere 2.5km, in 2m27.61, beating Tinkoff’s Nikolai Trosov by 1.21 seconds.


Cavendish out of the start gate. Photo c. Dave O'Nyons Sports Pictorial

The Brit’s average speed over the route, set around the Athletics Stadium in Crystal Palace (South East London) was 61.2km/h – though this was aided hugely by the fast opening kilometre, and a descent towards the finish line, which came after a brief, but sharp third category climb. Despite this hill’s inclusion, the general consensus after the race was that the Prologue length wouldn’t produce large time gaps between the favourites.

That belief was definitely true; it’s best illustrated by the time of Alex Dowsett (Great Britain), who began the racing at 15h01. He posted a very respectable time of 2m36.8, which eventually gave him twenty-seventh place, just 9.1 seconds off the race lead. His benchmark time lasted for around ten minutes, when Simon Clarke (South Australia.com – AIS) – and a former Junior World Pursuit Champion- shed a second off Dowsett’s time. Before the race, the British rider admitted that the course would be ‘too short’ for him, though he promised to ‘have a go’ – clearly he attacked the route aggressively, and now is one of four riders for the GB team in the top thirty.

Despite the speed the riders were reaching at the bottom of the descent parallel to the Athletics stadium (and on a road once part of the Crystal Palace motor-racing circuit), there were no reported crashes, though Kenny van Hummel (Skil-Shimano) and James McCallum (Plowman Craven – Evans Cycles) lost over twenty more seconds than the rider directly above them both. As yet, the extent of what happened is unknown, though McCallum finished the prologue with a hand-written race number on his jersey.

Frantisek Rabon, Cavendish’s teammate, led for the majority of the afternoon; his ride of 2m32.03 was enough for sixth at the end of the stage. It did look as if Geraint Thomas (Barloworld) would add to his rising status by eclipsing Rabon’s time, though was a tenth of a second behind the three-time Czech U-23 time trial champion. Behind Welshman Thomas were Ed Clancy (GB) and Chris Newton (Recycling.co.uk), rounding out four British riders in the top ten overall. Newton could be an outside bet for the overall race win, having recently taken the honours in the British Premier Calendar series; the one-day races that make up that event are not dissimilar to the stages in the week long Tour of Britain.

A late flurry of activity began when Zak Dempster, another rider for the Australian Institute of Sport, set the second fastest time, with just eight riders following him. At this point, many believed that Tinkoff’s Alexander Serov’s time of 2m31.24 would be enough for him to take the Yellow Jersey. Setting off sixth from last, Cavendish took the opening, downhill part of the course more easily than many others, but come the top of the climb he had set the fastest intermediate time check. He shed nearly four seconds off of the fastest time come the finish line.

With the home crowd expectant, it was the aforementioned Trusov who nearly spoiled the party, though Cavendish had a second to spare over the Russian, thus ensuring him the race lead on home soil. Reigning Tour of Britain Champion, Martin Pederson, finished in sixty-fourth place, losing fourteen and a half seconds to Cavendish. Interestingly, since the race began again in 2004, no rider has ever successfully defended their title.


Cavendish in the Yellow Jersey Photo c. Dave O'Nyons Sports Pictorial

Mark Cavendish - Post Race Press Conference
Q. Cav, were you surprised by that?
Yeh, I was to be honest…..When I came across the line, I was shaking my head. I didn’t think I’d done that well. It was only when I came into the car park and they were like you’ve got the fastest time.

Q. And you knocked your team-mate to ?

Did I ? Erm, no…..he was up there, though. Had he have been later he might have won. Today I just went full out, maybe that paid off, in the second half especially.

Q. How does it feel to wear the Yellow Jersey in the Tour of Britain?

Ah, the prologue wasn’t that long and the time gaps wouldn’t be that big, so I though I could do well here and perhaps win a stage tomorrow then get it. I’ve got it a day early and I’m really proud. What surprised me is the Polka Dot; I’ve never worn one!


Mark Cavendish on the podium receiving his polka dot jersey  Photo c. T-Mobile

Q. Does that take the pressure off you, because of the stages may not be suitable for you ?

You know, I think, it actually added more pressure because now I’ve put pressure on myself. I’m one off double figures for the year. If I get two more wins……(his target for 2007 is eleven wins). Tomorrow may be a bunch sprint, so…….

Q. The Tour de France was a one off this year, it won’t happen again, well it might possibly, and obviously you had the disappointment back then (on stage one in Canterbury). Does today make up for it ?

You know, it’s not as if I needed to make up for it. I know I’ve still got lots of Tour de Frances left in me. Just to come to the Tour is pretty special. When you see so many people supporting you, it helps.

Q. Four Brits in the top ten. Tell us about that.

Ah, it’s brilliant. You know, it bodes well for Beijing…..the track, the time-trialists…..it’s nice to see them on the roads, so, that’s good.

Q. Was it distracting, at the start line, I noticed the crowd. The cheer you got was so big.

For me, it doesn’t add a little bit, it adds 100%. When you go all the way round you can hear people shouting. Like I said, in the prologue in the Tour, when you feel that lactic and people shouting you don’t think twice.

Q. Can you win this race?

It’s only two-and-a-half kilometres today, a long way to go…….I’ve not been able to train properly (he’s had an operation to remove some Wisdom teeth), so we’ll see.

Q. How have you changed this year?

I’m still myself. I’m still a cocky little northerner (laughs). When I was younger, I knew I was good. It’s just a case of getting the opportunity to prove it. I’m still the same person, but I’ve just been doing what I need to do in my first season. With the team, especially with the calendar of T Mobile, I get the opportunity to prove myself, so I’m just thankful for the opportunity to do it. You ride as you ride, and I got a reward.

Results
Prologue – Crystal Palace 2.5km
1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) T- Mobile 2.27.6 (61.2 km/h)
2 Nikolai Trusov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems @ 0.01.2
3 Alexander Serov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.03.6

4 Zakkari Dempster (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.03.9
5 Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC 0.04.3
6 Frantisek Rabon (Cze) T- Mobile 0.04.4
7 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Barloworld 0.04.6
8 Ed Clancy (GBr) Great Britain 0.05.8
9 Cristopher Newton (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.05.9
10 Emilien Berges (Fra) Agritubel 0.06.3
11 Robbie Hunter (RSA) Barloworld 0.06.6
12 Tom Veelers (Ned) Rabobank 0.07.2
13 Daniele Contrini (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.07.3
14 David Blanco (Spa) Duja Tavira 0.07.4
15 Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel 0.07.5
16 Andrew Tennant (GBr) Great Britain 0.07.6
17 Coen Vermelfoort (Ned) Rabobank
18 Salvatore Commesso (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.07.8
19 Piet Rooijakkers (Ned) Skil-Shimano
20 Matthew Goss (Aus) Team CSC
21 Martin Garrido (Arg) Duja Tavira
22 Gene Bates (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.08.1
23 Paul Manning (GBr) Great Britain 0.08.3
24 Simon Clarke (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.08.4
25 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Skil-Shimano 0.08.8
26 Daniel Lloyd (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.09.0
27 Alex Dowsett (GBr) Great Britain 0.09.2
28 Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel
29 Manuel Lloret Zaragozi (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.09.4
30 Aart Vierhouten (Ned) Skil-Shimano 0.09.6
31 John Bellis (GBr) Great Britain
32 Servais Knaven (Ned) T- Mobile 0.09.7
33 Bernardo Riccio (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.09.8
34 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.10.1
35 Samuel Caldeira (Por) Duja Tavira
36 Tony Gibb (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.10.4
37 David Munoz Banon (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.10.7
38 Thomas Berkhout (Ned) Rabobank 0.10.8
39 Johnnie Walker (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.11.3
40 Nico Mattan (Bel) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.11.6
41 Martijn Keizer (Ned) Rabobank 0.11.8
42 James Millard (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.12.0
43 Linus Gerdemann (Ger) T- Mobile 0.12.1
44 Paul Sneeboer (Ned) Duja Tavira
45 Vicente David Bernabeu Armengol (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.12.2
46 Juan Jose Haedo (Arg) Team CSC 0.12.4
47 Russell Hampton (GBr) Great Britain 0.12.5
48 Evan Oliphant (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed
49 Roger Hammond (GBr) T- Mobile 0.12.6
50 Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Rabobank 0.12.7
51 Ben Swift (GBr) Barloworld 0.12.9
52 Ian Stannard (GBr) T- Mobile 0.13.0
53 Jose Adrian Bonilla Bonilla (CRc) Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.13.2
54 Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Rabobank
55 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.13.3
56 Hans Dekkers (Ned) Agritubel 0.13.6
57 Lars Bak (Den) Team CSC
xx Enrico Degano (Ita) Barloworld
59 Christoff Van Heerden (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.13.7
60 David Deroo (Fra) Skil-Shimano 0.14.0
61 Adrian Palomares Vilaplana (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
62 Elia Aggiano (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.14.4
xx Kenny De Ketele (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen
64 Martin Pedersen (Den) Team CSC
65 Gordon McCauley (NZl) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.14.8
66 Evert Verbist (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.15.2
67 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.15.3
68 Diego Caccia (Ita) Barloworld 0.15.5
xx Christopher Froome (Ken) Team Konica Minolta
70 Freddy Bichot (Fra) Agritubel 0.15.6
71 Simon Gaywood (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.15.8
72 Kristian House (GBr) Navigators Insurance 0.16.1
73 Floris Goesinnen (Ned) Skil-Shimano 0.16.2
74 Giosue' Bonomi (Ita) Barloworld 0.16.3
75 Cedrid Coutouly (Fra) Agritubel 0.16.4
76 Hamish Haynes (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.17.1
77 Tom Stubbe (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.17.6
78 Anders Lund (Den) Team CSC 0.17.7
79 Nelson Vitorino (Por) Duja Tavira 0.18.7
80 Ricardo Mestre (Por) Duja Tavira 0.19.0
81 Michael Wolf (USA) Navigators Insurance 0.19.4
82 Rob Partridge (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.19.7
83 Simon Richardson (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.19.9
84 Roel Vanmuysen (Bel) Navigators Insurance 0.20.5
85 Tom Diggle (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.20.6
86 Bernie Sulzberger (Aus) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.20.7
87 Travis Allen (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.21.3
xx Mikel Artetxte Gezeuraga (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
89 Daniel Fleeman (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.21.9
90 Rodney Green (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.22.2
91 Kurt Hovelijnck (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.22.9
92 Bert De Backer (Bel) Navigators Insurance 0.24.0
93 David Rodriguez (USA) Navigators Insurance
94 Matt Cooke (USA) Navigators Insurance 0.24.4
95 Simon Holt (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.24.7
96 Adam Bonser (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.27.4
97 Dennis Van Niekerk (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.27.5
98 Jay Thompson (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.27.8
99 Ryan Bonser (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.29.2
100 Kenny Van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano 0.46.7
101 James McCallum (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.55.9

Mountains Classification
KOM Cat 3: 1.6km

1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) T- Mobile 4 pts
2 Samuel Caldeira (Por) Duja Tavira 3 pts
3 Frantisek Rabon (Cze) T- Mobile 2 pts
4 Alexander Serov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems 1 pt

General Classification
1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) T- Mobile 2m27s
2 Nikolai Trusov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems @ 0.01
3 Alexander Serov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems 0.04
4 Zakkari Dempster (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS
5 Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC
6 Frantisek Rabon (Cze) T- Mobile 0.05
7 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Barloworld
8 Ed Clancy (GBr) Great Britain 0.06
9 Cristopher Newton (GBr) Recycling.co.uk
10 Emilien Berges (Fra) Agritubel
11 Robbie Hunter (RSA) Barloworld 0.07
12 Tom Veelers (Ned) Rabobank
13 Daniele Contrini (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems
14 David Blanco (Spa) Duja Tavira
15 Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel 0.08
16 Andrew Tennant (GBr) Great Britain
17 Coen Vermelfoort (Ned) Rabobank
18 Salvatore Commesso (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems
19 Piet Rooijakkers (Ned) Skil-Shimano
20 Matthew Goss (Aus) Team CSC
21 Martin Garrido (Arg) Duja Tavira
22 Gene Bates (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS
23 Paul Manning (GBr) Great Britain
24 Simon Clarke (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS 0.09
25 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Skil-Shimano
26 Daniel Lloyd (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed
27 Alex Dowsett (GBr) Great Britain
28 Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel
29 Manuel Lloret Zaragozi (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.10
30 Aart Vierhouten (Ned) Skil-Shimano
31 John Bellis (GBr) Great Britain
32 Servais Knaven (Ned) T- Mobile
33 Bernardo Riccio (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems
34 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS
35 Samuel Caldeira (Por) Duja Tavira
36 Tony Gibb (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.11
37 David Munoz Banon (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
38 Thomas Berkhout (Ned) Rabobank
39 Johnnie Walker (Aus) South Australia.com-AIS
40 Nico Mattan (Bel) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.12
41 Martijn Keizer (Ned) Rabobank
42 James Millard (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles
43 Linus Gerdemann (Ger) T- Mobile
44 Paul Sneeboer (Ned) Duja Tavira
45 Vicente David Bernabeu Armengol (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
46 Juan Jose Haedo (Arg) Team CSC
47 Russell Hampton (GBr) Great Britain 0.13
48 Evan Oliphant (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed
49 Roger Hammond (GBr) T- Mobile
50 Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Rabobank
51 Ben Swift (GBr) Barloworld
52 Ian Stannard (GBr) T- Mobile
53 Jose Adrian Bonilla Bonilla (CRc) Fuerteventura-Canarias
54 Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Rabobank
55 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen
56 Hans Dekkers (Ned) Agritubel 0.14
57 Lars Bak (Den) Team CSC
57 Enrico Degano (Ita) Barloworld
59 Christoff Van Heerden (RSA) Team Konica Minolta
60 David Deroo (Fra) Skil-Shimano
61 Adrian Palomares Vilaplana (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
62 Elia Aggiano (Ita) Tinkoff Credit Systems
62 Kenny De Ketele (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen
64 Martin Pedersen (Den) Team CSC 0.15
65 Gordon McCauley (NZl) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles
66 Evert Verbist (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen
67 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen
68 Diego Caccia (Ita) Barloworld 0.16
68 Christopher Froome (Ken) Team Konica Minolta
70 Freddy Bichot (Fra) Agritubel
71 Simon Gaywood (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles
72 Kristian House (GBr) Navigators Insurance
73 Floris Goesinnen (Ned) Skil-Shimano
74 Giosue' Bonomi (Ita) Barloworld
75 Cedrid Coutouly (Fra) Agritubel
76 Hamish Haynes (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.17
77 Tom Stubbe (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.18
78 Anders Lund (Den) Team CSC
79 Nelson Vitorino (Por) Duja Tavira 0.19
80 Ricardo Mestre (Por) Duja Tavira
81 Michael Wolf (USA) Navigators Insurance 0.20
82 Rob Partridge (GBr) Recycling.co.uk
83 Simon Richardson (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles
84 Roel Vanmuysen (Bel) Navigators Insurance 0.21
85 Tom Diggle (GBr) Recycling.co.uk
86 Bernie Sulzberger (Aus) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed
87 Travis Allen (RSA) Team Konica Minolta
87 Mikel Artetxte Gezeuraga (Spa) Fuerteventura-Canarias
89 Daniel Fleeman (GBr) DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.22
90 Rodney Green (RSA) Team Konica Minolta
91 Kurt Hovelijnck (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Topsport Vlaanderen 0.23
92 Bert De Backer (Bel) Navigators Insurance 0.24
93 David Rodriguez (USA) Navigators Insurance
94 Matt Cooke (USA) Navigators Insurance
95 Simon Holt (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.25
96 Adam Bonser (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.27
97 Dennis Van Niekerk (RSA) Team Konica Minolta 0.28
98 Jay Thompson (RSA) Team Konica Minolta
99 Ryan Bonser (GBr) Recycling.co.uk 0.29
100 Kenny Van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano 0.47
101 James McCallum (GBr) Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.56

Mountains Classification
1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) T- Mobile 4 pts
2 Samuel Caldeira (Por) Duja Tavira 3pts
3 Frantisek Rabon (Cze) T- Mobile 2pts
4 Alexander Serov (Rus) Tinkoff Credit Systems 1 pt

Team Classification
1 Tinkoff Credit Systems 7.33
2 T- Mobile @ 0.03
3 South Australia.com-AIS 0.09
4 Great Britain 0.10
5 Agritubel 0.11
6 CSC 0.12
7 Barloworld 0.13
8 Duja Tavira
9 Rabobank 0.14
10 Skil-Shimano 0.15
11 Fuerteventura-Canarias 0.21
12 DFL-Cycling News-Litespeed 0.22
13 Plowman Craven-Evans Cycles 0.26
14 Chocolade Jacques-Topsport 0.30
15 Recycling.co.uk 0.35
16 Team Konica Minolta 0.39
17 Navigators Insurance 0.45
 

 
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