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Amstel Gold - Preview
 
By Podofdonny
Date: 4/19/2003
Amstel Gold - Preview
 

Amstel Gold Race


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A Peculiar Obsession

The Amstel Gold is, surprisingly, Holland's only one day Classic and is no “Old Lady,” the race was first staged in 1966. It is usually held on the last Saturday in April, but this year sees a new day and a new parcours.

The race has always been famous for its winding twisty route that never gets more than 50 kilometres from the start, its numerous hills and narrow roads, which sometimes see riders take the wrong turning. However, this year the infamous Cauberg in Valkenburg is featured three times and the race, after 30 climbs, finishes at the top of the Cauberg for the first time to make a record 31 climbs in the race.

Parcours


The succession of climbs throughout the race, the narrow twisty roads, which are sometimes no more than well kept farm tracks, at other times urban roads, has the effect of gradually reducing the peloton. The race is often decided by a small or lone breakaway, although Jan Raas is “Mr. Amstel Gold” having won the race four times in succession between 1977 and 1980 when he was also World Champion. In 1981 he was prevented by Bernard Hinault from becoming the first rider to win a single classic race five times in a row. However Raas returned the following year (1982) to win the race for a fifth and last time.

The Warrior!

The Contenders

Lance Armstrong seems to have a peculiar obsession with this race. In the picture above, Bartoli raises his hands in triumph after he and team mate Serguei Ivanov had worked exceptionally well together to eliminate other breakaways Michael Boogerd and Lance Armstrong in last year's race.

The picture below again shows Armstrong in despair in 2001 when a Rabobank combination saw Erik Dekker take the glory and Armstrong once again be the bridesmaid. He pulled out sick at Sarthe, and is very much an unknown quantity, but with the support of Ekimov and “Mad Max” the bookmakers odds of 8-1 are very fair.

Triple Dekker!

Michele Bartoli

A superb team in support, and fully recovered from yet another injury which have dogged his career, the bookmakers favourite at 6-1; they are seldom wrong.

Peter Van Petegem

Surely not? There is no way that the current king of the cobbles could continue his winning run to three races - then again...the bookmakers odds of 7-1 reflect the feeling that he could create a little bit of cycling history.

Boogerd ahead of Armstrong 1999

Michael Boogerd

It is the Rabobank's home race and a lot of pride is at stake. Boogerd has a top notch team - Erik Dekker, Oscar Freire, Marc Wauters and Beat Zberg are essentially domestiques although anyone of those riders could equally win the race.

Frank Vandenbroucke

Surrounded by class act riders, including Museeuw who won this race in 1994, this years parcours would seem ideal for “Bimbo”. 10 -1 odds from the bookmakers reflect a slight decline of confidence in the Quickstep team as a result of injuries and sickness. If VDB fails, Luca Paolini may be the best placed man.

Rolf Järmann joy, Martin den Bakker despair

Danilo Di Luca

14-1 odds, the same as team mate Mirko Celestino, also in support Igor Astarloa, Salvatore Commesso, Fabio Sacchi and Stefano Zanini gives very powerful support for the Saeco team.

Davide Rebellin

The “serial second placed” man has a good enough team to support him to the finale - can Rebellin learn winning ways? Good for a top three bet though at 4.5-1.

Easy “ETE”!

Erik Zabel

Pictured above winning the 2000 edition of the race . The new parcours may not be ideal, but don’t worry Telekom fans, with Mario Aerts, Rolf Aldag, Cadel Evans, Matthias Kessler, Daniele Nardello, Alexander Vinokourov and hopefully coming back from injury Steffen Wesemann, the Telekom team is super strong for this event.

It will be a fascinating race of high drama - follow our live ticker of the race starting at 13.00 CET.

The Teams

Fassa Bortolo:

1. Michele Bartoli (Ita), 2. Ivan Basso (Ita), 3. Wladimir Gustov (Ukr), 4. Sergei Ivanov (Rus), 5. Kim Kirchen (Lux), 6. Filippo Pozzato (Ita), 7. Roberto Petito (Ita), 8. Gorazd Stangelj (Sln)

Lotto-Domo:

11. Peter Van Petegem (BEL), 12. Rik Verbrugghe (BEL), 13. Leon Van Bon (P-B), 14. Axel Merckx (BEL), 15. Serge Baguet (BEL), 16. Glenn D'Hollander (BEL), 17. Wim Van Sevenant (BEL), 18. Christophe Brandt (BEL)

Quick.Step-Davitamon:

21. Kevin Hulsmans (BEL), 22. David Canada (Esp), 23. Servais Knaven (P-B), 24. Andrei Kasjesjkin (Kaz), 25. Johan Museeuw (BEL), 26. Luca Paolini (Ita), 27. Bram Tankink (P-B), 28. Frank Vandenbroucke (BEL)

Team CSC:

31. Michael Blaudzun (Dan), 32. Carlos Sastre (Esp), 33. Tyler Hamilton (USA), 34. Paul Van Hyfte (BEL), 35. Lennie Kristensen (Dan), 36. Andrea Peron (Ita), 37. Jakob Piil (Dan), 38. Nicki Sörensen (Dan)

Ibanesto.com:

41. Juan Antonio Flecha (Esp), 42. Eladio Jimenez (Esp), 43. Pablo Lastras (Esp), 44. Juan-Antonio Lopez (Esp), 45. Francisco Mancebo (Esp), 46. Denis Mentsjov (Rus), 47. Juan-Miguel Mercado (Esp), 48. Jon Odriozola (Esp)

Once-Eroski:

51. Jose Azevedo (Por), 52. Giampaolo Caruso (Ita), 53. Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano (Esp), 54. Koldo Gil (Esp), 55. Jörg Jaksche (All), 56. Marcos Serrano (Esp), 57. Angel Vicioso (Esp), 58. Oliver Rodriguez (Esp)

Cofidis:

61. Dimitri Fofonov (Kaz), 62. Angelo Lopebosseli (Ita), 63. Nico Mattan (BEL), 64. Chris Peers (BEL), 65. Jo Planckaert (BEL), 66. Robert Sassone (Fra), 67. Guido Trentin (Ita), 78. Cédric Vasseur (Fra)

Team Coast:

71. Stefan Adamsson (Suè), 72. Niki Aebersold (Sui), 73. Bekim Christensen (Dan), 74. Jaime Hernandez (Esp), 75. Christoph Von Kleinsorgen (All), 76. Thomas Liese (All), 77. Torsten Rund (All), 78. Malte Urban (All)

Gerolsteiner:

81. Udo Bölts (All), 82. Rene Haselbacher (Aut), 83. Sebastian Lang (All), 84. Ellis Rastelli (Ita), 85. Davide Rebellin (All), 86. Gerhard Trampusch (Oos), 87. Fabian Wegmann (All), 88. Markus Zberg (Zwi)

Team Telekom:

91. Mario Aerts (BEL), 92. Rolf Aldag (All), 93. Cadel Evans (Aus), 94. Matthias Kessler (All), 95. Daniele Nardello (Ita), 96. Alexander Vinokourov (Kaz), 97. Steffen Wesemann (All), 98. Erik Zabel (All)

Alessio:

101. Pietro Caucchioli (Ita), 102. Laurent Dufaux (Zwi), 103. Ruslan Ivanov (Mol), 104. Denis Lunghi (Ita), 105. Ruggero Marzoli (Ita), 106. Christian Moreni (Ita), 107. Andrea Noe (Ita), 108. Franco Pellizotti (Ita)

Domina Vacanze-Elitron:

111. Massimiliano Gentili (Ita), 112. Massimo Giunti (Ita), 113. Alexander Kolobnev (Rus), 114. Miguel Martin Perdiguero (Esp), 115. Kyrylo Pospeev (Oek), 116. Michele Scarponi (Ita), 117. Filippo Simeoni (Ita), 118. Francesco Secchiari (Ita)

Rabobank:

121. Michael Boogerd (P-B), 122. Erik Dekker (P-B), 123. Oscar Freire (Esp), 124. Marc Lotz (P-B), 125. Bram De Groot (P-B), 126. Steven De Jongh (P-B), 127. Marc Wauters (BEL), 128. Beat Zberg (Sui)

Lampre:

131. Francesco Casagrande (Ita), 132. Sergio Barbero (Ita), 133. Gabriele Missaglia (Ita), 134. Daniele Righi (Ita), 135. Raimondas Rumsas (Lit), 136. Maximilian Sciandri (G-B), 137. Zbigniew Spruch (Pol), 138. Francesco Vila Errandonea (Esp)

Saeco:

141. Igor Astarloa (Esp), 142. Mirko Celestino (Ita), 143. Salvatore Commesso (Ita), 144. Danilo Di Luca (Ita), 145. Paolo Fornaciari (Ita), 146. Gerrit Glomser (Aut), 147. Fabio Sacchi (Ita), 148. Stefano Zanini (Ita)

Phonak:

151. Roger Beuchat (Sui), 152. Oscar Camenzind (Sui), 153. Martin Elmiger (Sui), 154. Fabrice Gougot (Fra), 155. Bert Grabsch (All), 156. Stefan Kupfernagel (All), 157. Oscar Pereiro (Esp), 158. Gregory Rast (Sui)

US Postal:

161. Lance Armstrong (USA), 162. Vjatcheslav Ekimov (Rus), 163. Benoit Joachim (Lux), 164. Guennadi Mikhailov (Rus), 165. Victor Hugo Pena (Col), 166. Jose Luis Rubiera (Esp), 167. Christian Van de Velde (USA), 168. Max Van Heeswijk (P-B)

Brioches La Boulangère:

171. Franck Bouyer (Fra), 172. Sebastien Chavanel (Fra), 173. Sylvain Chavanel (Fra), 174. Anthony Geslin (Fra), 175. Christophe Kern (Fra), 176. Emmanuel Magnien (Fra), 177. Franck Renier (Fra), 178. Didier Rous (Fra)

Palmans-Collstrop:

181. Thierry De Groote (BEL), 182. Fabien De Waele (BEL), 183. Steve De Wolf (BEL), 184. Roger Hammond (GBr), 185. Bjorn Leukemans (BEL), 186. Geert Omloop (BEL), 187. Erwin Thijs (BEL), 188. Michel Vanhaecke (BEL)

Marlux-Wincor Nixdorf:

191. Maurizio Ardila (Col), 192. Raivis Belohvosciks (Let), 193. Dave Bruylandts (BEL), 194. Johan Coenen (BEL), 195. Johan Dekkers (BEL), 196. Saulius Ruskys (Lit), 197. Jean-Michel Tessier (Fra), 198. Geert Verheyen (BEL)

Landbouwkrediet-Colnago:

201. Ludovic Capelle (BEL), 202. Ludo Dierckxsens (BEL), 203. Johan Verstrepen (BEL), 204. Marc Streel (BEL), 205. Tony Bracke (BEL), 206. Yaroslav Popovytch (Ukr), 207. Lorenzo Bernucci (Ita), 208. Vladimir Doema (Ukr)

Bankgiroloterij:

211. Bert Hiemstra (P-B), 212. Gerben Löwik (P-B), 213. Matthé Pronk (P-B), 214. Bram Schmitz (P-B), 215. Remco Van der Ven (P-B), 216. Jan Van Velzen (P-B), 217. Bart Voskamp (P-B), 218. Pieter Vries (P-B)

Team Fakta:

221. Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor), 222. Jorgen Petersen (Dan), 223. Frank Hoj (Dan), 224. Scott Sunderland (Aus), 225. Michael Skelde (Dan), 226. René Jorgensen (Dan), 227. Allan Johansen (Dan), 228. Lars Bak (Dan)

Vini Caldirola-Sidermec:

231. Gianluca Bortolami (Ita), 232. Romans Vainsteins (Let), 233. Eddy Mazzoleni (Ita), 234. Paolo Bossoni (Ita), 235. Andrej Hauptman (Slo), 236. Fred Rodriguez (USA), 237. Steve Zampieri (Sui), 238. Gabriele Balducci (Ita)

Jean Delatour:

241. Patrice Halgand (Fra), 242. Gilles Bouvard (Fra), 243. Pierre Bourquenoud (Fra), 244. Samuel Dumoulin (Fra), 245. Christophe Edaleine (Fra), 246. Laurent Lefevre (Fra), 247. Jean-Patrick Nazon (Fra), 248. Eddy Seigneur (Fra).

 
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