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Tour Down Under 2008 - Stage 4
 
By Staff
Date: 1/25/2008
Tour Down Under 2008 - Stage 4
 

Tour Down Under 2008 - Stage 4
Hot and windy conditions made for a long day for the peloton. High Road's Greipel scores again, as Credit Agricole's Renshaw defends his race lead.

German sprint sensation Andre Greipel (Team High Road) collected his second stage win in an action packed fourth stage of the Tour Down Under edging out tour leader, Australia's Mark Renshaw (Credit Agricole) and Spaniard Jose Rojas (Caisse d'Epargne) in a sprint finish in Strathalbyn. Greipel's win, which carried a ten second bonus, has moved him up to second overall, four seconds behind Renshaw with Queensland's Allan Davis (Australia-UniSA) sitting third overall at seven seconds.

131 starters rode off from the Murray River town of Mannum this morning for a hot and windy day in the saddle over 134km through the Adelaide Hills to the Fleurieu Peninsula and into the finish. The temperature topped 30 C  degrees (85 F) and the race action was just as hot as the Australian summer weather, with a flurry of early attacks.

"It was really on for the first two hours," said Renshaw whose Credit Agicole mates were on the front of the peloton to protect his race lead. "We were getting hit from left, right and centre.

"All the power of CSC and Caisse d’Epargne and the peloton split to pieces but it all came back together and most importantly it stayed together for a bunch sprint," said Renshaw. "I managed to stay calm and was not too nervous at the finish and it paid off."

Cross winds buffetted the peloton early in the stage as the race travelled through the Murrayland to the Adelaide Hills and Greipel says it was tough going.

"It was really busy today and there were a lot of breakaways with the wind," said Greipel. "In the end we were lucky and we had a second win for the tour."

Greipel's prizes for the win included a Yellow Jersey cow named Fleurieu Freckle which regrettably he will have to leave behind. "I think it is not possible for me to go back to Germany with a cow in my suitcase," he said.

While Greipel was celebrating Rabobank's Matt Hayman was sitting in the middle of the road stunned after crashing 300 metres from the finish. The Canberra rider had been leading his team mate Graeme Brown up for the sprint and had just eased off to let Brown by when Italian rider Elia Rigotto (Milram) flew down his left hand side and caused the crash. Race officials, after viewing the replay of the incident, fined Rigotto 200 Swiss francs and disqualified him from the Tour for what Chief Commissaire, Michael Robb, described as a 'viscious headbut'.

Hayman was transported to hospital where he underwent surgery on his fractured left collar bone. Surgeons inserted a plate and screws in order to speed his recovery and he is expected to be back on his bike within a week.

With 87 riders still within 24 seconds of the race lead tomorrow's fifth stage, that begins and ends in Willunga, could prove decisive. The race heads to the McClaren Vale wine growing region and involves three laps out to Aldinga Bay before the race heads up Old Willunga Hill for the king of the mountain sprint just 20 kilometres from the finish line.

"It's going to be hard tomorrow and I’m not looking forward to it," said Renshaw. "But I’m going to take it by the horns and I think if I can stay within a minute over the top my teammates should be able to drag me back up.

"We’re just going to have to bank on that but we have a double-spear (two-pronged) attack with Simon (Gerrans - 2006 Tour Down Under winner) and myself, so we’ll be looking to either put Simon in the break or have me defend the jersey," explained Renshaw of the team's tactics for the penultimate stage.

Earlier in Stage 4 Adelaide's Stuart O'Grady (CSC) and Credit Agricole rider Christophe Le Mevel were involved in a low speed crash at Mt Pleasant but both recovered to rejoin the race and O'Grady showed no ill effects joining the sprint for the line to place eighth on the stage.

At the day's 'South Australia - A Brilliant Blend' king of the mountain sprint 19 kilometres after the start it was Saunier Duval's Arkaitz Duran (ESP) who claimed the points ahead of Mathieu Perget (FRA - Caisse d'Epargne) and Denmark's Nicki Sorensen but current climber's category leader Philippe Gilbert (Francaise des Jeux) made sure he picked up some more points for his tally by crossing in fifth place at the summit.

There were two SA Lotteries sprints contested today. The first at the 47.9km mark in Mt Torrens saw Australian Allan Davis (Australia-UniSA) collect the three seconds bonus ahead of Caisse d'Epargne rider Luis Sanchez and Gilbert. The time bonus made Davis the virtual leader on the road but at the next sprint at Woodside (60.2km) the man wearing the ochre leader's jersey, Renshaw, claimed second place and a two second bonus to snatch back the lead. German Jan Fortser (Gerolsteiner) won the second intermediate sprint with Euskatel Euskadi rider Mikel Astarloza third across the line.

In the wake of the intermediate sprints the race settled down until, with 50 kilometres remaining, Javier Aramendia (Euskatel-Euskadi) time trialled off the front solo and managed to gain a lead of almost four minutes. But the audacious gamble of the young Spaniard didn't pay off and six kilometres from home he was swamped as the sprinter's teams steamrolled into town.

Tomorrow Renshaw will again wear ochre as the race leader and holds the lead in the 'SA Lotteries Sprint' classification, Gilbert will wear the 'South Australia - A Brilliant Blend' jersey as leader of the king of the mountain classification, Jose Rojas (Caisse d'Epargne) is still on top of the 'Share the Road Best Young Rider' standings and for his effort today Aramendia was named the 'Hindmarsh Most Aggressive Rider' for the stage. The Bartercard Teams Classification has CSC on top but all 19 teams are currently on the same time. Crowd estimate for Stage Four - 68,000

Caisse d'Epargne Comments
José Joaquím Rojas Third

Many attacks and a very hot temperature characterized the fourth stage of the Tour Down Under, raced between Mannum and Strathalbyn upon the distance of 134 kilometres.

The riders of the team Caisse d’Epargne went with various breakaway. Mathieu Perget and Iván Gutiérrez were the most active, together with Luis León Sánchez who took place two of the first intermediate sprint where Allan Davis was the faster.

Even if he was not able to win the stage, José Joaquím Rojas finished the third behind Andre Greipel (High Road) and Mark Renshaw (Crédit Agricole). “A crash occurred during the sprint”, explained Rojas. “The last 200 metres went slightly uphill and I like that, but Greipel and Renshaw showed one more time that they are the fastest riders in this first ProTour event of the new season. Three stages are still left to ride. I have very good feelings and I hope to be able to win one of them before going back to Europe”, concluded the young rider from Murcia who keeps leading the U25 classification.

Team CSC in Fourth Twice
Team CSC took two fourth places overnight Danish time, when Matti Breschel came fourth in second stage of Tour de San Luis and Matthew Goss took another in the fourth stage of Tour Down Under. The stage in Tour Down Under was a lot more interesting than the previous three, but still ended in a bunch sprint.

"Nicki Sørensen was part of an early break along with three others and behind them the peloton was split in three during a climb. The front group caught up to Nicki's group and later the two groups behind came together as well. After that a hectic chase followed for about 30 or 40 kilometers before the entire peloton was reunited again," commented sports director Scott Sunderland and continued:

"When the peloton was together again Stuart O'Grady attacked and ended in a group of 20 riders, but they couldn't quite agree on anything, so they gave up a fell back to the others." Instead Javier Aramendia (Euskaltel) was allowed off in a solo break and was not caught until five kilometers before the finish, following which Andre Greipel (High Road) won the sprint.

"Stuart was helping Matthew and it almost went horribly wrong, when two riders crashed in front of them, but they managed a lucky escape. But because of this Goss lost momentum and never quite regained, which was too bad, because the entire team had made a huge effort to get Gossy and Stuey up front for the final 10 kilometers ahead of the sprint, so everyone was a bit annoyed about that crash, but then that's all part of the game," said Sunderland.

Saunier Duval/Scott
French sprinter Denis Flahaut, one of Saunier Duval/Scott´s newcomers, is improving by the day. He's landed spot 5 in stage 4 of the 10th Tour Down Under after a crash-marred finish that, once again, ended in a mass sprint.

In the early race, "red bird" Arkaitz Durán jumped off the peloton to neutralize the half-minute gap opened by Nicki Sorensen (CSC), Mathieu Perget (Caisse d´Épargne) and Simon Clarke (UniSA) and took the points on offer for being the first one to crest the only climb of the day. The four riders were reeled in 20 kilometres later. Durán is standing second now in the Mountains Classification. Tomorrow the tour will go into its last but one stage: 147 kilometres with their starting point and finish line in Willunga and a climb just 20 kilometres before the end.

Lampre/Fondital Comments
Another sprint in the 4th stage of Tour Down Under, but this time the race has been tough. The first to cross the finish line in Strathalbyn was the German Greipel, who preceeded Renshaw and Rojas Gil. Lorenzetto took part in the sprint for Lampre, finishing in 13th position.
"Today stage has been very tough, because of the strong wind and the 35°of temperature- sport director Vicino commented - The bunch has always been broken, it has become compact near the arrival".

Tour Down Under
Stage 4 Results

1 Andre Greipel (Ger) Team High Road 3.14.46
2 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Credit Agricole
3 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne

4 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Team Csc
5 Denis Flahaut (Fra) Saunier Duval-Scott
6 Allan Davis (Aus) Unisa - Australia
7 Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank
8 Stuart O’Grady (Aus) Team Csc
9 Davide Vigano (Ita) Quick Step
10 Jan Robert Forster (Ger) Gerolsteiner
11 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Francaise Des Jeux
12 Aurelien Clerc (Swi) Bouygues Telecom
13 Mirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Lampre
14 Jean-Eudes Demaret (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
15 Aaron Kemps (Aus) Astana

Hindmarsh Most Aggressive Rider's Jersey
1 Javier Aramendia Lorenti (Esp) Euskaltel - Euskadi

SA Lotteries Sprint Jersey classification
1 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Credit Agricole 24 pts
2 Allan Davis (Aus) Unisa - Australia 18
3 Andre Greipel (Ger) Team High Road 16
4 Mickael Delage (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 12
5 Mickael Buffaz (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone 12

A Brilliant Blend King of the Mountains Jersey
1 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Francaise Des Jeux 30 pts
2 Mickael Delage (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 16
3 Arkaitz Duran Daroca (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott 16

4 Stephane Poulhies (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale 16
5 Yoann Offredo (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 12

Share the Road Young Rider's Jersey classification
1 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne 13.28.52
2 Mickael Delage (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 0.04
3 Yoann Offredo (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 0.05

4 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) Unisa - Australia 0.08
5 Richie Porte (Aus) Unisa - Australia

General Classification after Stage 4
1 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Credit Agricole 13.28.38
2 Andre Greipel (Ger) Team High Road 0.04
3 Allan Davis (Aus) Unisa - Australia 0.07

4 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne 0.14
5 Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank
6 Mickael Delage (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 0.18
7 Mickael Buffaz (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
8 Yoann Offredo (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux 0.19
9 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank 0.20
10 Kjell Carlstrom (Fin) Liquigas
11 Jan Robert Forster (Ger) Gerolsteiner 0.21
12 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne 0.22
13 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) Unisa - Australia
14 Richie Porte (Aus) Unisa - Australia
15 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Francaise Des Jeux 0.23
16 Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
17 Stuart O’Grady (Aus) Team Csc 0.24
18 Aurelien Clerc (Swi) Bouygues Telecom
19 Martin Elmiger (Swi) Ag2R-La Mondiale
20 Davide Vigano (Ita) Quick Step
21 Mirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Lampre
22 Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) Liquigas
23 Denis Flahaut (Fra) Saunier Duval-Scott
24 Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Silence-Lotto
25 Jose Alberto Benitez Roman (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
26 Aaron Kemps (Aus) Astana
27 Heinrich Friederich Haussler (Ger) Gerolsteiner
28 Jose Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne
29 Adam Hansen (Aus) Team High Road
30 Erki Putsep (Est) Bouygues Telecom
31 Xavier Florencio Cabre (Spa) Bouygues Telecom
32 William Walker (Aus) Rabobank
33 Michael Albasini (Swi) Liquigas
34 Lloyd Mondory (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale
35 Peter Wrolich (Aut) Gerolsteiner
36 Jeremy Roy (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux
37 Ivan Velasco Murillo (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
38 Igor Astarloa Ascasibar (Spa) Team Milram
39 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Team Csc
40 Jerome Pineau (Fra) Bouygues Telecom
41 Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
42 Renaud Dion (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale
43 Timothy Gudsell (NZl) Francaise Des Jeux
44 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Credit Agricole
45 Iker Camano Ortuzar (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
46 Alessandro Proni (Ita) Quick Step
47 Nicki Sorensen (Den) Team Csc
48 Koen De Kort (Ned) Astana
49 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Team Csc
50 Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence-Lotto
51 Simon Clarke (Aus) Unisa - Australia
52 Scott Davis (Aus) Team High Road
53 Josep Jufre Pou (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
54 Massimiliano Mori (Ita) Lampre
55 Arkaitz Duran Daroca (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
56 Thomas Fothen (Ger) Gerolsteiner
57 Mario Aerts (Bel) Silence-Lotto
58 Carlo Westphal (Ger) Gerolsteiner
59 Jeremy Hunt (GBr) Credit Agricole
60 Mauro Facci (Ita) Quick Step
61 Nicolas Portal (Fra) Caisse D'Epargne
62 Luke Roberts (Aus) Unisa - Australia
63 Jon Bru Pascal (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
64 Rick Flens (Ned) Rabobank
65 Ivan Santaromita Villa (Ita) Liquigas
66 Mauro Da Dalto (Ita) Liquigas
67 Matthew Wilson (Aus) Unisa - Australia
68 Fabio Baldato (Ita) Lampre
69 Sebastien Portal (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
70 Volker Ordowski (Ger) Gerolsteiner
71 Jose Luis Rubiera Vigil (Spa) Astana
72 Wim Vansevenant (Bel) Silence-Lotto
73 Christophe Mengin (Fra) Francaise Des Jeux
74 Paolo Fornaciari (Ita) Lampre
75 Dmytro Grabovskyy (Ukr) Quick Step
76 Jesus Del Nero Montes (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
77 Leonardo Scarselli (Ita) Quick Step
78 Matthias Russ (Ger) Gerolsteiner
79 Vladimir Miholjevic (Cro) Liquigas
80 Laurent Mangel (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale
81 Christophe Kern (Fra) Credit Agricole
82 Amael Moinard (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
83 Kasper Klostergaard Larsen (Den) Team Csc
84 Mathieu Perget (Fra) Caisse D'Epargne
85 Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Lampre
86 Kurt Asle Arvesen (Nor) Team Csc
87 Sergio Ghisalberti (Ita) Team Milram
88 Kevin Seeldraeyers (Bel) Quick Step 0.44
89 Christian Murro (Ita) Lampre 1.01
90 Dennis Haueisen (Ger) Team Milram 1.58
91 Jan Boven (Ned) Rabobank 2.12
92 Pablo Lastras Garci (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne 2.39
93 Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Caisse D'Epargne
94 Nick Gates (Aus) Silence-Lotto 3.29
95 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) Team High Road 3.36
96 Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team High Road 3.50
97 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Team Milram 3.51
98 Aitor Galdos Alonso (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 4.28
99 Jean-Eudes Demaret (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
100 Enrico Poitschke (Ger) Team Milram
101 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Silence-Lotto
102 Javier Aramendia Lorenti (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
103 Steve Morabito (Swi) Astana
104 Yuriy Krivtsov (Ukr) Ag2R-La Mondiale
105 Olivier Kaisen (Bel) Silence-Lotto
106 Nicolas Hartmann (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
107 Frantisek Rabon (Cze) Team High Road
108 Yann Huguet (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
109 Allan Johansen (Den) Team Csc
110 Benoit Joachim (Lux) Astana
111 Andoni Lafuente (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
112 Laszlo Bodrogi (Hun) Credit Agricole
113 Ruben Lobato Elvira (Spa) Saunier Duval-Scott
114 David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis Le Credit Par Telephone
115 Greg Henderson (NZl) Team High Road 4.47
116 Dimitri Champion (Fra) Bouygues Telecom 4.50
117 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Credit Agricole 4.54
118 Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale
119 Julien Mazet (Fra) Astana
120 Martin Muller (Ger) Team Milram 5.29
121 Rene Haselbacher (Aut) Astana 5.31
122 Bram De Groot (Ned) Rabobank 6.13
123 Theo Elltink (Ned) Rabobank 6.16
124 Emanuele Bindi (Ita) Lampre 6.22
125 Pierre Rolland (Fra) Credit Agricole 6.24
126 Tom Stubbe (Bel) Francaise Des Jeux 6.27
127 Stephane Poulhies (Fra) Ag2R-La Mondiale 7.35
128 Karl Menzies (Aus) Unisa - Australia 9.04
129 Nicolas Crosbie (Fra) Bouygues Telecom 12.08

Bartercard Winning Team Jersey classification
1 Team CSC 40.27.06
2 Team High Road
3 Ag2r-La Mondiale

4 Astana
5 Caisse D'Epargne
6 Bouygues Telecom
7 Rabobank
8 Gerolsteiner
9 Saunier Duval-Scott
10 Francaise Des Jeux
11 Credit Agricole
12 Euskaltel - Euskadi
13 UniSA - Australia
14 Quick Step
15 Cofidis, Le Credit Par Telephone
16 Liquigas
17 Silence-Lotto
18 Lampre
19 Team Milram

For more information, race routes and results visit the official website at www.tourdownunder.com.au

 
Related Articles
Tour Down Under 2008 - Preview
Tour Down Under 2008 - Stage 1
Tour Down Under 2008 - Stage 2

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