97th Tour de France - Stage 7 le Tour
The heavy hitters are content to watch each other while a local hero doubles up,
Jersey Leaders After Stage 7
Sylvain Chavanel Quick Step
Maillot Vert: Thor Hushovd Cervello TestTeam
Pineau Quick Step
Andy Schleck Saxo Bank
Saturday 10th July
Preview Week 2
the Daily Peloton
This was the appetizer, a moderate-sized mountain stage with a pseudo
mountaintop finish that gave the peloton their first taste of altitude at this
year’s Tour. Predictably the top tier kept their powder dry in view of what they
were to face in stage eight, which gave the baroudeurs a fantastic chance to
shine in the Jura. With six categorised climbs but none greater than a category
two, it was an ideal warm up for the Tour’s second week. Here are the winners
A- Undoubtedly the play of the day, bring on the Moet!
B- Super effort but not enough to hog the limelight.
C- Bang on the fine line separating a good day from a bad one.
D- A change of fortunes required but all is not lost.
E- Stands for “End”, which is what some unfortunate rider’s Tour has just
• OFE- Obligatory French Escape. Nuff said.
• Le Tour Farceur Imbécile. Otherwise known as the ’tool’ award, this goes to
the person who says or does something worthy of lacings of wrath, but we will
point and laugh…
• The Boss versus El Pistorelo. The battle fought as much with psychology as it
is with legs.
A- Sylvain “Daily Double” Chavanel (Quickstep)
must have had visions of stage two into Spa today; he won alone, again. He took
the yellow jersey, again. He was the toast of French cycling, again. The major
difference today was not the fact that this was a mountainous stage in France
instead of a flat stage in Belgium, but rather there was no neutralized race
behind the enigmatic Frenchman.
King of the Day, Sylvain Chavanel in his well deserved maillot jaune.
Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
No question mark at all about the circumstances surrounding his victory. No
reason why anyone could divert their attention away from the fact that he
attacked the group of favourites and drove toward the finish in an exemplary
manner. And best of all was that he now has a stage victory and subsequent LCL
Lion (exclusively for TDF stage winners) for each of his two sons. Chapeau!
B- Jerome “Spotty” Pineau (Quickstep).
Predictably attacked today in the style of Jalabert (later polka dot Jaja, not
early green Jaja) and Virenque to add to his lead in the king of the mountain
Quick Steps Jerome Pineu celebrates Chavanel's victory and his successful day
collecting climbing points to keep his polka dot jersey. Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
The 30-year-old Quickstep rider collected maximum points on all but the final
climb today to secure his lead in the KOM competition. The pre-2010 Pineau had
previously been known more for his opinionated nature than his results but with
an excellent Giro stage victory and the panache he has shown at the Tour thus
far, the 2010 Pineau is really fulfilling the promise he has shown since his neo
pro year in 2002. Together with Chavanel, he has already made this a successful
Tour for his classic-centric team that had little expectations placed on them
since their star Tom Boonen withdrew from the tour team prior to the Tour with a
C- Damieno “Il Piccolo Prince” Cunego
(Lampre-Farnese Vini) attacked with the Voeckler group today and
looked threatening as Pineau and Co. began to wilt out front, however the
Italian lacked the punch to follow Chavanel then Voeckler (Bbox Bouygues
Telecom) then Garate (Rabobank) and so it went until he found himself back in
the main peloton, only to be dropped from there as well! He may have dropped
back to give himself some freedom from the GC guys in order to facilitate
another escape in the coming days but it was not a particularly convincing
performance from Cunego today. Time will tell.
D- Yaroslav “Poppo” Popovych and Andreas “Wingman”
Klöden (Radioshack) lost contact with the main group today, which may
be part of the reason why The Shack were not as prominent at the front of the
bunch as Astana were. Shaky ground or saving for tomorrow? Watch this space!
E- Stijn Vandenbergh (Katusha)
became the first casualty for the Russian super team today. Robbie
McEwen almost became the second. Lets hope the Aussie fast man can get through
stage eight in order to utilize the rest day and recharge for the next phase of
Although the race is yet to reach the Alps, the first mountainous day typically
sees a flourish of attacks from the Frenchies trying for the polka dot jersey,
the stage win, combativity prize, or just TV time. Today saw Chavanel and Pineau
gain the most recognition but there were a number of other local riders very
Pint-sized Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis) accompanied Pineau in the first move of
the day; but it was housewives favourite Thomas Voeckler (Bbox Bouygues Telecom)
and Tour debutant Mathieu Perget (Caisse d’Epargne) who instigated the move that
proved to be the catalyst for Chavanel’s winning attack. Voeckler and Perget
finished the day in 4th and 5th, just ahead of the remnants of the peloton. It
is quite telling that at the end of week one, four Frenchman head the KOM
classification before the big mountains have come into the equation.
Le Tour Farceur Imbécile
No recipients for this today, lets hope this trend continues in the coming days.
The Boss versus El Pistolero
Both the American and Spaniard finished with the reasonably sized peloton and
both never looked in any trouble. Both still had teammates with them and so it
will be stage eight that gives us our first real insight into how their
respective form is. There will be no hiding on the slopes of Morzine-Avoriaz.
Celebrating our tenth year!