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Tour de France Stage 17 Live Coverage
 
By Jaime Nichols
Date: 7/22/2004
Tour de France Stage 17 Live Coverage
 

Stage 17: Bourg-d'Oisans - Le Grand-Bornand, 204.5 km

Good day and welcome to live coverage of Stage 17 of the Tour de France!

Today should be a hard day for aching legs with 1 Cat 2 climb, 3 Cat 1 climbs, and a big nasty Hors Category trip up the torturous, 20km Col de la Madeleine. The bottom line? There's a ridiculous amount of climbing today - nearly 17,000 feet - and the heads of state will no doubt be happy to let a break go that doesn't threaten the leader board, as Postal looks to defend, and CSC and T-Mobile look for podium places in Paris.

There are 155 men left in the Tour de France this morning (Aart Vierhouten and Davide Bramati were eliminated by the Alpe D'Huez) and their legs are tired. It should be a good one!

Please refresh this page to view the latest information. Commentary by Jaime Nichols and Janna Trevisanut.

As we join the race in progress, over the Col du Glandon, it's a 5 man break: Gilberto Simoni (Saeco), Filippo Simeoni (Domina Vacanze), Ludovic Martin (RAGT), Rolf Aldag (T-Mobile) and Michele Bartali (CSC), and after them in no man's land: Mikel Astarloza. The peloton is a bit more than 5 minutes behind the leaders.

To be expected, the peloton is led by the Blue Train under the very bright Alpine sun.

One hundred fifty three riders started Stage 17 - Roberto Heras of Liberty and Alessandro Bertolini of Alessio Bianchi both abandoned before the start today.

The peloton is now 7:05 behind the leaders - but Richard Virenque (QuickStep) and Christophe Moreau (Credit Agricole) are on the chase and gaining on the leaders. They are 3:50 behind the leaders.

Meanwhile, the flatlanders are starting to get dropped. Boonen, Zanini, Pozzato, McEwen...out the back, along with Baden Cooke, who is not having a great tour, and Eric Dekker.

Moreau leads Virenque in what I can only imagine is a somewhat uneasy alliance on Moreau's part, while Virenque is likely just shaking his head and wondering just what his countryman thinks he's doing. At this point, it's Armstrong who sits second in the KOM - Virenque has 171, Armstrong 142.

04:27 am PDT. 133 km to go. Current situation on the road: There are the five leaders, followed by Astarloza at 2:09, a second chase of Moreau and Virenque at 5:35, and the peloton at 6:03. Postal is making the pace, and guys are cracking on the road behind them.

The Col de la Madeleine is exacting its toll in pain for the five leaders, and the gap to Moreau and Virenque is down to just 1:50. This climb is the Souvenir Henri Desgrange, commemorating the originator of the Tour de France - fitting for the highest climb in the tour. There are plenty of spectators along the roadside.

Astarloza has been passed by Virenque and Moreau, and has now been caught by the Postal-led peloton.

Michele Bartoli and Rolf Aldag are suffering, but Gilberto Simoni, feeling the pressure from the chasers behind, is lifting the pace. GO GILBERTO!

Simoni has had a rough ride in the tour once again this year - he's only finished the tour twice, and not with stellar times, but he's still in the hunt. Michele Bartoli is cracking - Aldag still hanging on. Bartoli is gritting his teeth - it obviously bites.

Bartoli is well and truly gapped off the back, as Simoni and Ludovic Martin do most of the driving in the break, now four strong. Virenque and Moreau are on their way... the gap down to 1:12.

Moreau and Virenque have passed a suffering Bartoli - they are hot on the heels - the chase now 43 seconds behind the Simoni group.

Mikel Astarloza (AG2R) took a nasty fall on the descent of the Col du Glandon, and he's back with his team car now, his jersey dirty on both sides. Meanwhile, Virenque is driving it now - he wants to get up there and seal his deal for the KOM.

One of the escapees today, Ludovic Martin of RAGT, was for a long time at the top of the leader board in yesterday's time trial, and also held the best times at the check points for quite some time. He ended up 30th.

The gap is 35 seconds now, and the pack at 5:57. The white jersey of Thomas Voeckler is near the front, by the way, not far away from the Maillot Jaune and the postal juggernaut that is now leading the field.

Virenque and Moreau have the leaders in their sights - the leaders are near the summit of the Col de Madeleine, and Virenque is looking motivated to get up there for the top points. He's dropped Moreau like a bad habit at this point! Amazing! Simoni wants the glory, though, and he's driving it too.

Virenque is DRIVING IT right now - it's NUTS!

He's almost caught on to the back of these chasers, and Simoni is now looking back and taking on the challenge! But Virenque is a man possessed! He's going to try to sprint for it.

Simoni is looking pretty intense - Virenque is right on Simoni's wheel now - he wants those KOM points, and he's going to have them, godammit. And the crowds along this ascent are going nuts! What a show!

Simoni is riding a ridiculous tempo, be Virenque is ready to explode - they're near the summit.

Virenque attacks, and Simoni is with him! They're head to head in a long sprint for the line, and SIMONI TAKES IT! Oh la la!

There was money on the line for this sprint, but it sure looks like Gibo d'Italia wants to make an impression today - and he is doing very nicely, thank you.

That was an impressive run at the summit of the Hors Catagory Col de la Madeleine by two of the world's top climbers. You have to love this sport. It always delivers!

It's great to see Simoni's pride rise up like that. His face was full calm determination.

04:55 am PDT. The peloton is over six and a half minutes back. The leaders are on the descent now, and will no doubt come back together; it will be about 20 minutes before they get down off the mountain that is the highest point in this year's Tour de France. Simoni and Virenque still lead.

The peloton is appreaching the summit - Michael Rasmussen and Paolo Bettini are on the front. George Hincapie is on the front here, keeping those two in his sights. Those three cross over the line ahead of the peloton. Eric Zabel is still with the peloton!

That's going to worry McEwen, who has been well and truly dropped for a long while.

Meanwhile, the leaders swoop down the narrow road through the lush green Alpine hills. It is a beautiful, if warm day with clear skies - Moreau is flying down the descent, the leaders are back together, and organizing. Moreau is a bit off the front.

Armstrong's entire team is on the front right now, their leader safely tucked in the middle. What an incredible team! Lance Armstrong predicted this morning that they would be strong, but called today's stage "six and a half hours of suffering."

Armstrong says he's feeling good today, but he's ready to "wrap it up," people.

There's a sheer drop on the right hand side of this part of the descent, with a short wall barrier, and the road is narrow. If they overshoot those turns, there is going to be TROUBLE. Moreau continues to fly down the mountainside, and the rest of the leaders are right behind him.

The leader on the road is Moreau, but the boys behind are only 8 seconds away. Moreau would be clever to give up trying to be the lone leader. Now they're coming back together, but Moreau is obstinately hanging on to a negligible lead. The peloton is on the descent, too, Postal leading, at 7:04 behind the front group.

Simoni has Moreau - he looks back to see the troops arriving. There are about 5 more kilometers of downhill before the road comes back up, and the peloton is snaking down the Alpes, single file, through a gorgeous, green mountainscape. This stretch of the Tour is simply lovely.

05:11 am PDT. The gap to the field is up to 7:21. Virenque waves to his team car...

102 km to go. Bartoli is now back in the fold, and the leaders press on - Simoni is ahead now, they're nearly at the bottom.

Nicholas Jalabert has a flat, but he gets a wheel change, and he's back on the road. The peloton zip through a picturesque Alpine town perched on the mountainside.

US Postal continues to set a killer pace; it's Ekimov on the front now, but the full complement of 9 riders is there.

05:23 am PDT. 97 km to go. The break is working together now, pulling through to keep the pace high. The peloton is 7:34 behind the leaders.

The peloton and the break are rolling along at about the same speed, but there are three men in this breakaway who would catapult themselves into the top ten if they keep this lead: Moreau, Virenque, and, making the biggest leap, Simoni.

The peloton is more in the flats now, rolling along past a river. The landscape of the Alpes is absolutely beautiful today - skies are clear, and the sun is shining. But the temperatures down here in the lower elevations are reported to be nearly 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Postal continues to lead the pack, Ekimov on the front, looking cool as a cucumber. Postal has no interest in this break, and they're full force on the front of the field right now.

05:30 am PDT. 92 km to go. Virenque and Simoni are keeping close tabs on one another... there are some dangerous men in this break. The gap is 7:50.

CSC is mixing in with Postal now - Simoni is so far ahead at this point that he threatens Basso's current general classification place, and the Danish team is having none of it.

Stuart O'Grady is just catching back onto the rear of the peloton. That descent did a lot of favors for some of these boys. Right now, the pack is a long, thin line; CSC has the pressure on.

The leading group is cycling through - each man taking his turn at the front, but with CSC and Postal driving a heavy pace now, they are going to need to step on it. In the lead again, we have Rolf Aldag, Gilberto Simoni, Richard Virenque, Ludovic Martin, Filippo Simeoni and Christophe Moreau. Their gap has come down - it's under seven minutes.

It's the hottest day of the tour so far, and the men of the break are all taking on as much fluid as they can - they're heading for the next climb.

Jens Voigt, as usual, is driving it hard on the front of the pack, and Lance Armstrong wipes the sweat off his brow.

The gap is down to 6:25, and the peloton is just through the feed zone, so that chase should slow a bit. The pack doesn't need to catch these boys, they just need to keep them at a safe distance.

The next climb coming up is the "little" one... the cat 2 Col de Terme. After that are two more Category Ones, the final summit just over ten kilometers from the finish. CSC and Postal are still driving. The break is 6 minutes ahead.

80 kilometers to go. The boys are gearing up to take them on. Now the gap has come down almost another minute.

Pavel Padrnos on the front now, with Jens Voigt. It's hammer time. The gap is down to 5:13. It's coming down fast. If these men want to stay away, the strong may have to attack the climbs with renewed vigor. The leaders, among them seasoned professionals, continue to work well together.

Moreau is working hard at the front of the pack, and the pace is up in the break. The peloton is now at 4:49, and the leaders are just about to turn up the climb.

The pressure is on in the break. Virenque and Simoni may be looking to distance Aldag - CSC may be chasing so hard in an effort to save their place in the team prize. The gap is coming down. CSC looks to have called off the dogs, and Postal is lining the front now. The gap is 4:39 now.

The peloton winds through another picturesque valley dotted with quaint structures; the road leads up in the distance.

Ahead, the leaders are on the climb, and it looks like Simeoni is suffering a little on the back. The roads are narrowing, and Moreau, Virenque and Simoni are looking a little twitchy.

06:02 am PDT. 74 km to go. This next climb is nearly 9km in length - Ludovic Martin and Simeoni have been dropped by a hard pace set by Virenque, mostly, but they still haven't managed to shake Aldag. The gap is just four and a half minutes.

It's hot today - Gilberto looks serious and determined today - he's driving the pace - Aldag is on the back, and this hill isn't that steep. Aldag will be hard to shake here. And now, Michele Bartoli has abandoned! That's a surprise!

Aldag finished in the top ten in the Tour of Flanders and Tirreno-Adriatico this year.

Postal is an arrowhead on the front of the pack, CSC is taking a backseat once again. Perhaps the big dogs will let this break survive. Ekimov on the front, looking good, while amongst the leaders, Rolf Aldag is gritting his teeth, but he's hanging tough. Simoni drives the pace.

The peloton is still within 5 minutes of this leading group. Postal and Rabobank are now the only two teams with a full roster of 9 men in this tour.

Two other men decided not to continue today - Janeck Tombak (Cofidis) abandoned due to physical problems, and Laurent Lefevre (Brioches la Boulangere) signed in, but never started. So that's three men out today.

The peloton is on the climb now - Jens "The Animal" Voigt is driving the pace at the front again - he's setting such a hard pace that he's broken away! Jens has decided to bridge this little gap, and keep CSC in the running for the team prize personally.

Jens suffered some cruel abuses at the hands of German fans on the Alpe d'Huez yesterday for chasing back Ullrich's move on a previous stage, but even Jan Ullrich was appalled at such bad behavior from the German fans, saying that he was near tears when he heard that Jens had been so abused.

Iker Flores has gone up to Voigt now, and passed him. Voigt keeps his own pace, he's a clever one. Aldag is still hanging tough in that front group, but the pace is still high.

Flores is on after the break now, Voigt is behind him... but it's a big gap.

Up ahead Aldag is suffering, and Voigt is back with the peloton. The leaders have reached the summit and Richard Virenque takes the points. Moreau is second, Simoni third. They are on their way back down - Simoni sits up to fasten on his helmet. There is an enthusiastic crowd at the summit.

The back of the field is falling to pieces again. Michele Scarponi is off the back now - he's been involved in some kind of accident today. David Extebarria is off the back as well.

06:20 am PDT. The Postmen are just over the summit of the Col de Tamie, Ludovic Martin and Paolo Bettini a little ahead of the bunch. Postal still has a full 9 men on the front of this field. What a performance from them! Virenque, Simoni, Moreau and Aldag are on the descent, and the next climb will be with us soon. Iker Flores is still chasing behind; he was 3:00 behind them at the summit. CSC is back off the front.

Pavel Padrnos leading the peloton now, as Jan Ullrich stocks up on water bottles.

Now old man Viatcheslav Ekimov smilingly drives the pace. He's having a nice ride, apparently.

Iker Flores has caught Ludovic Martin and the two are attempting the bridge. Brave ride from the RAGT rider! They are at 3:47, and the peloton is better than 4 minutes behind. Padrnos and Ekimov continue to lead - Postal is saving the big guns for later, it looks like. There are still two Cat 1 climbs to come.

Levi Leipheimer said this morning that he believes Ullrich will attack today... we're all waiting for it! Rumor has it, too, that Leipheimer is on his way back into the Postal/Discovery fold next year.

06:32 am PDT. 55 km to go. Moreau, Virenque, Simoni and Aldag drive on...the first chase group is just under four minutes down on the leaders, the pack four and a half minutes. The leaders are up above the valley now, riding past cheering fans.

The leaders are nearly at the foot of today's penultimate climb. It's a narrow road, and steep and long, 8.2 km in length and 8% on the average, with some sections kicking up to 11%. These climbers may very well shake Aldag now, as Aldag is starting to dangle on the back. Simoni drives a hard bargain for the German.

Flores and Martin are still in the valley, but they will be on the climb in just a moment. Postal still leads - the gap is 4:40. Martin and Flores at 3:42.

Aldag is grinding now, as the steepness of the climb kicks up. Simoni and Virenque are dancing now. Aldag is fading... he's off the back! This may mean that CSC will give up the chase.

Moreau can't hang either! Virenque and Simoni are outpacing them - but it looks like the two leaders have waited for Moreau... maybe they want to keep his service until the final climb. It's clear, however, that they can drop him at will. Simoni is looking very strong today - he wants this stage win.

Ludovic Martin has now been dropped by Flores, as Postal leads the climb, with T-Mobile moving towards the front now. Padrnos is gone - he has called it a day. The peloton is on a very narrow road, a drop on the left and a brick wall on the right (plus fans...)

Is Ullrich preparing to make his move? Guerini and Ivanov have come to the front now... is it that time???

Kloden is just behind Armstrong, who is just behind the first two pink men. This pace is hurting the Postmen - but Triki Beltran comes around to aid his leader. Ivanov leads now, but Postal is reorganizing. They are letting Ivanov go.

Karpets is just hanging onto the back... He's a threat to Voeckler's Maillot Blanc - but where is Voeckler now? At the front, Gibo Simoni continues his merciless pace; Virenque and Moreau are with him.

51 km to go. Simoni is on the front still, looking better and better! There are two chase groups, all well behind. Beltran has hit the wall, but George Hincapie is on the front of the pack, making it happen, but Ullrich is right at the sharp end, looking very, very serious. It looks like T-Mobile wants to break Postal before the last climb. Guys are cracking all over this mountain.

George is amazing - he's looking ahead with an eagle eye - putting in his usual, wholly committed effort for Armstrong. Lance, meanwhile, looks behind him to see what's going on... Hincapie Rubiera and Landis are still there, they're driving it, and VOECKLER IS THERE!

Virenque, Moreau and Simoni are still going strong, and now without Rolf Aldag, no one of them poses any threat in the tactical battle going on behind them. It's a steep, tough climb. The front men are laboring, but they aren't faltering. Still a few km to the summit of the Category 1 Col de Forclaz...Iker Flores meanwhile, is being chased by the devil! Didi Senft waves the trident of hell over his head.

George Hincapie is riding hard, his eye focused on the road ahead with total concentration. He is working hard, and like always, doing an impressive job keeping things under control for his man. George is amazing, and this is his 9th Tour de France, and is posting his best finish ever in the tour - he sits on 33rd today. Nice ride for Big Hink - it's his strongest ever tour.

Moreau is on the front of the break - Simoni and Virenque watchful, and not even close to cracking.

Oh no - Thomas Voeckler is dangling off the back on this climb, but as we have seen countless times in this tour, he is fighting to hang on! Come on, Thomas!

49 kilometers to go for the leaders.

The break is on a small flat section before the climb kicks up to the summit. Flores is being gobbled back up by the man-eating beast called the peloton even as I type. Postal is steady, only a few meters behind him. George Hincapie is still driving it. Voeckler is battling on - he's not far away - and he is riding like a total champion. He's hanging on as admirably, as he has done everyday. He has to hang on if he wants that Maillot Blanc.

Simoni is looking good - he's not even breathing hard, and the pack is now VERY select. There are plenty of dropped fellas - among them, Francisco Mancebo. He is looking to be out of the running for any kind of top GC position. He's chasing back on, though. Caucchioli is with him, and dropped as well.

The leaders, Moreau, Simoni and Virenque, are now on the last kilometer of the climb, and it's a beast. It's steeper and steeper towards the top. Virenque leads over the climb, but no one is giving an inch. There are 47 km to go today, and these three have a lead of 3:04.

Simoni lets Virenque and Moreau battle out the points - he doesn't care what these two Frenchmen do at the sprint. Virenque takes it easily. The order is Virenque, Moreau, and then Simoni, who has now called up his car for some refreshment. It's a hot one out there today. Many appreciative fans line the route here, though not the enormous crowds of the Alpe yesterday. Aldag, meanwhile, struggles on in no man's land - he's still 50 seconds ahead of the Armstrong group. Aldag goes over the summit in 4th place.

Chechu Rubiera has taken over at the front. Jose Azevedo is just behind him.

Michael Rasmussen is off the front of the pack again, as they head over the summit of the climb, and they're all together again, heading over the summit, and on the way down. And once again it's more high-speed, green Alpine scenery rushing by.

Guerini is a little swervy, picking up water at the T-Mobile car - whoa! He's scaring me!

07:07 am PDT. 39 km to go. Floyd Landis has taken over at the front now, Armstrong is chatting it up with his boys, perhaps formulating a plan to deal with whatever is impending from the antsy T-Mobile boys. Aldag is being caught now.

THOMAS VOECKLER HAS REJOINED THE ARMSTRONG GROUP, PEOPLE. Way to go!!!

The three leaders are still ahead, but the pack is gaining on them, but these three are strong men, and they could still hang on. At this point, it all depends on what happens behind. Voeckler is magnificent! He is back in with the big boys! Michael Rogers is with him, there, reintegrating the group. Excellent!

Moreau is picking up the pace, Simoni and Virenque right with him on the descent now. Last year, when Simoni won his stage, it was Virenque he outsprinted at the line... today could be a replay of that. Remember too, that Simoni attacked in the first kilometer of the race today - his co-escapees are not with him any longer. This is a terrific ride by him.

Simoni leads. He looks strong. He is a man with a mission. Simoni, Virenque and Moreau have a 10 km flat section before they hit the final mountain, and this is a dangerous stretch of raod for these three climbers.

Chechu and Floyd are looking good at the front of the pack, Lance Armstrong looking under his arm behind him. The leaders have 2:24. Time to pick up the pace, boys!

It's a very select group in the pack, and they aren't really chasing. Serguei Ivanov, Guerini and Ullrich are having a pow-wow...Bobby Julich, too, has rejoined this group - he's doing waterboy duty today for Basso, who is hanging tough here.

07:21 am PDT. 28 k to go. The last climb of the day is on tap! Just as soon as these boys get through the winding valley here (did we mention how beautiful it is?).

The three leaders are near the foot of the climb, the relative safety of the mountains looming ahead of them. The lead is only 1:58 now. It looks, though, that a battle is brewing behind. Ullrich is boring holes in Armstrong's Maillot Jaune with his eyes. Ahead, the final sprint of the day is not contested - Simoni takes it. Moreau second, Virenque third.

The gap is coming down for the leaders... the ascent cannot come fast enough for these climbers.

Rik Verbrugghe has leapt off the front... perhaps eating up sprint points for his teammate McEwen. On the way to a bridge up to the leaders. The road is kicking up a little through the town of Thones at the bottom of the climb... the lead is 1:45. Moreaus's teeth are gritted. The three drive on.

Virenque and Simoni will no doubt lift the pace hard when the road kicks up. Those two are just waiting kick out the jams. Voeckler is back on, and Vladimir Karpets is there... If Voeckler can hang on by three minutes on this climb, he will be okay for today. There's a long descent after the climb - that could give him a fighting chance! We're just hitting the Col de la Croix-Fry... 11.5% gradient.

Moreau is looking defensive in that break. He fears the betrayal by his companions, and I think he's right to think that they will drop him like a stone at the first opportunity. Verbrugghe, meanwhile, is not getting very far, as Iker Flores has another go. He has a bit.

Rolf Aldag, meanwhile, is dropping anchor out the back. Not a big surprise. The German has had a long, hard day. His teammate, Jan Ullrich looks twitchy... there's a battle ahead! The pastoral, tree-studded green hills belie the nervousness on the road - bring it on, boys!

Simoni looks concentrated, strong, and ready to face the climb. Bobby Julich is back in the caravan. He may be done for the day.

CSC's Carlos Sastre and Basso are attacking! Postal is keeping a cool head. No response from Armstrong, and Postal picks up the pace. Only Azevedo is left with Armstrong, and now is a perfect time for Ullrich to attack... Armstrong has only one man with him now. 1:09 the gap.

Voeckler is keeping the tail of that group in sight... he can't lose too much time today. Mancebo is with Voeckler, and in difficulty. There are a lot of tired legs in this last week of the race. Verbrugghe and Guerini are out the back, but hanging on by a thread.

There's only 30 seconds to the leaders... they are going to be hard pressed to hold off the battle behind! And Landis is still there with Armstrong. CSC attacks again! It's Sastre. Armstrong stays calm, and Ullrich is RIGHT BEHIND HIM. Vladimir Karpets is still there, as is Kloeden.

Postal has no reason to chase Sastre. There's no reaction.

Sastre grabs a bottle of water and pours it over his back - it's tired work, this! Simoni looks over at Virenque in the leading group. Will they make their move? They're going to have to step on it... Sastre has caught them. Sastre passes them - he's too fast for these boys... but Virenque goes with him!

Azevedo, Landis and Armstrong lead the chasers. Virenque is having a hard time of it on Sastre's wheel. Simoni and Moreau are back in the fold...

Virenque is dropping off Sastre's wheel now. The little Spaniard is alone now! And here comes the pack. Virenque will be caught now by the Armstrong group, and we're still waiting for a move from Ullrich.

Moreau has cracked, and he's out the back, so is Virenque. Simoni looks like he's hanging tough. Nope. He's out the back, too. He looks bummed.

Large numbers of enthusiastic, and soon to be sunburned, fans line the narrow road. In the race for the Maillot Blanc, both Sandy Casar and Vladimir Karpets are in the Armstrong group. Voeckler has been gapped off, but can he catch them before the end of the day? Sandy Casar, though, is slipping...

18 km to go. Virenque and Simoni are working together to survive, but they're only just holding on. Tough racket for them. There's a Postman dropping back... Azevedo. Is he cracked, or just going to the car?

Sastre, meanwhile, is suffering. Ullrich is still in this pack...5km to the summit, the hardest bits still to come. Sastre's lead is 16 seconds. The road is getting steeper and steeper.

Totschnig has slipped off the back, but Levi Liepheimer is still strong in this group. Virenque pushes on - he's dropping all dead weight now, struggling to hang on. Karpets is being dropped now too! Azevedo, too is having a tough time, as is Axel Merckx, who has been strong all day.

Leipheimer, Kloeden, Ullrich, Basso, Armstrong, Landis... these are the men now in the action. Sastre is coming back - he's pedaling squares now. He's down to 11 seconds. Armstrong looks scary comfortable as Sastre is caught. Leipheimer is catapulting himself into the top ten.

Landis, meanwhile, is continuing to drive it! What a ride this guy has had this year. Ullrich's face is all intensity. Will he make his move? Come on, Ulle, let's see what you've got!

Kloeden is slipping back a bit, and the tempo is totally nuts - and Leipheimer has cracked! He's dumping a fan's cold water over his head, on the rivet trying to hang on!

Landis continues to drill it hard. Rumor has it Landis has received a big offer to leave Armstrong... That would be a blow...

Casar and Virenque have teamed up to stay in sight of the KOM line, as Armstrong, Ullrich, led by Landis, continue at a mercilous pace. Sastre is dangling now!

The lead group now is just the select few. Armstrong with one teammate: Landis! With him, the three best in this year's Tour de France. Close to the summit now, 14 km to the finish...Armstrong's jersey is zipped down, he's 100% concentrated, and not at all pressed. Ullrich isn't attacking, and I think Floyd Landis can take credit for that.

He's setting a pace that would make a would-be attacker think twice. Virenque's group is now 1:46 behind these 5 leaders. Huge crowds line the summit road and hillsides. Kloeden is in the back now - Kloeden is pushing the crazy fans away from him. Floyd leads it. The anticipated attack from Jan Ullrich has not come.

Landis takes the prize at the top of the climb, and they have successfully neutralized any hope of attack from their rivals. Armstrong's hand on Floyd's shoulder as he cross the KOM line.

So now it's five men together on the descent - Landis, Armstrong, Ullrich, Kloeden and Basso. The cream rising to the top once more in this Tour de France.

Now we're down to only three men together! Armstrong, Ullrich and Landis, they are waiting. Armstrong looks up. Landis responds! They're back together.

Meanwhile, Voeckler is over the summit, can he catch his rivals for the Maillot Blanc on this descent?

Armstrong and Ullrich had a little discussion there, as Armstrong was unwilling to drive the pace with Basso behind. Ullrich refused. Then Kloden went, and Landis followed - perhaps Armstrong is trying to give the victory to Landis - who sure as hell deserves it.

Armstrong is driving it for Landis now! Armstrong looks behind, at the challengers, but Ullrich wants this one too!

It's looking like Ullrich and Kloden against Armstrong and Landis. The leaders are flying along, it's still a bit hilly. Ullrich and Armstrong are having another discussion... Oh, to be a fly in one of those helmets! There's a slight up hill to the finish... and these men are charging for it - less than 5 km to go!

Everyone's working, and Armstrong is taking his turns at the front - he wants this one for Landis! Kloeden leads... Basso is up front too, but he won't feature in this five man sprint.

Landis is pinned to Ullrich's wheel...under 2 to go. Landis on the front now - looking behind him, Armstrong is on the back now. These men are very, very twitchy! Landis ATTACKS! and Ullrich goes with him! Armstrong chases!

One to go - and Kloeden attacks off the back... the day is his. There's no reaction for the other four. Landis is driving on...but it won't be enough.

Basso is taking it on the chin here...Armstrong is sprinting! Lance Armstrong wins his FOURTH STAGE IN A ROW! He just flew up on Kloden!!!!!

Lance Armstrong. Any questions?

Now Vladimir Karpets comes over the line... Where is Voeckler? Here's a group behind - led by Mancebo, Virenque, Guerini...

Armstrong was amazing. Seeing that Landis could not take it, he broke out the guns bigtime, and won that little shootout. Simply amazing...that move saved Basso from a much bigger time loss to Kloeden.

That was a big thrill. What magnificent racing today - the entire stage!

Voeckler still hangs on to the Best Young rider jersey.

Brief Results
1 ARMSTRONG Lance USA USP in 6h 11' 52"
2 KLÖDEN Andréas GER TMO at 00' 00"
3 ULLRICH Jan GER TMO at 00' 01"
4 BASSO Ivan ITA CSC at 00' 01"
5 LANDIS Floyd USA USP at 00' 13"
6 MERCKX Axel BEL LOT at 01' 01"
7 LEIPHEIMER Levi USA RAB at 01' 01"
8 SASTRE Carlos ESP CSC at 01' 02"
9 RASMUSSEN Mickael DEN RAB at 01' 02"
10 TOTSCHNIG Georg AUT GST at 01' 02"

Brief GC:
1 ARMSTRONG Lance USA USP in 74h 04' 56"
2 BASSO Ivan ITA CSC at 04' 09"
3 KLÖDEN Andréas GER TMO at 05' 11"
4 ULLRICH Jan GER TMO at 08' 08"
5 AZEVEDO José POR USP at 10' 41"
6 MANCEBO Francisco ESP IBB at 11' 45"
7 TOTSCHNIG Georg AUT GST at 12' 56"
8 SASTRE Carlos ESP CSC at 15' 14"
9 LEIPHEIMER Levi USA RAB at 16' 25"
10 CAUCCHIOLI Pietro ITA ALB at 16' 33"

Armstrong: "That was not scripted. It was a hard day, and it came down to five men, but I think Floyd was the man of the day. Floyd is the fastest down-hiller I know, so I asked him, 'How fast can you downhill?' He said, 'I can downhill real fast,' so I told him, 'You better go down like you just stole something, because you're about to win a stage of the Tour de France.' But Ullrich was fast going down, too."

Results

1 Armstrong Lance Usa Usp 6h 11' 52"
2 Klöden Andréas Ger Tmo m.t.
3 Ullrich Jan Ger Tmo 00' 01"
4 Basso Ivan Ita Csc m.t.
5 Landis Floyd Usa Usp 00' 13"
6 Merckx Axel Bel Lot 01' 01"
7 Leipheimer Levi Usa Rab m.t.
8 Sastre Carlos Esp Csc 01' 02"
9 Rasmussen Mickael Den Rab m.t.
10 Totschnig Georg Aut Gst m.t.
11 Azevedo José Por Usp m.t.
12 Karpets Vladimir Rus Ibb 02' 00"
13 Pereiro Sio Oscar Esp Pho 02' 05"
14 Guerini Giuseppe Ita Tmo m.t.
15 Mancebo Francisco Esp Ibb m.t.
16 Caucchioli Pietro Ita Alb m.t.
17 Virenque Richard Fra Qsd m.t.
18 Mercado Juan Miguel Esp Qsd 02' 08"
19 Moreau Christophe Fra C.a 02' 16"
20 Casar Sandy Fra Fdj 02' 20"
21 Verbrugghe Rik Bel Lot 04' 48"
22 Voeckler Thomas Fra Blb m.t.
23 Rogers Michael Aus Qsd m.t.
24 Simoni Gilberto Ita Sae m.t.
25 Flores Iker Esp Eus 06' 50"
26 Pineau Jérôme Fra Blb 07' 19"
27 Rubiera José Luis Esp Usp 07' 19"
28 Goubert Stephane Fra A2r 08' 18"
29 Moncoutie David Fra Cof m.t.
30 Aldag Rolf Ger Tmo m.t.
31 Julich Bobby Usa Csc m.t.
32 Botcharov Alexandre Rus C.a 10' 19"
33 Gutierrez José Enrique Esp Pho 11' 24"
34 Portal Nicolas Fra A2r m.t.
35 Camano Iker Esp Eus m.t.
36 Beltran Manuel Esp Usp m.t.
37 Sevilla Oscar Esp Pho 11' 29"
38 Osa Aitor Esp Ibb 14' 57"
39 Ivanov Serguei Rus Tmo 16' 08"
40 Sabaliauskas Marius Ltu Sae 16' 16"
41 Gonzalez Santos Esp Pho 18' 02"
42 Bettini Paolo Ita Qsd 19' 39"
43 Halgand Patrice Fra C.a 20' 49"
44 Ludewig Jorg Ger Sae m.t.
45 Sunderland Scott Aus Alb m.t.
46 Brochard Laurent Fra A2r m.t.
47 Dufaux Laurent Sui Qsd m.t.
48 Beneteau Walter Fra Blb m.t.
49 Peron Andrea Ita Csc m.t.
50 Calzati Sylvain Fra Rag m.t.
51 Scholz Ronny Ger Gst m.t.
52 Grabsch Bert Ger Pho m.t.
53 Fedrigo Pierrick Fra C.a m.t.
54 Petrov Evgeni Rus Sae m.t.
55 Chavanel Sylvain Fra Blb m.t.
56 Hincapie George Usa Usp m.t.
57 Vandevelde Christian Usa Lst m.t.
58 Noval Gonzalez Benjamin Esp Usp m.t.
59 Robin Jean-Cyril Fra Fdj m.t.
60 Landaluze Inigo Esp Eus m.t.
61 Voigt Jens Ger Csc m.t.
62 Da Cruz Carlos Fra Fdj m.t.
63 Jalabert Nicolas Fra Pho m.t.
64 Charteau Anthony Fra Blb 27' 28"
65 Zabel Erik Ger Tmo m.t.
66 Elmiger Martin Sui Pho m.t.
67 Renier Franck Fra Blb m.t.
68 Botero Santiago Col Tmo m.t.
69 Eisel Bernhard Aut Fdj m.t.
70 Gutierrez José Ivan Esp Ibb m.t.
71 Krivtsov Yuriy Ukr A2r m.t.
72 Bruseghin Marzio Ita Fas m.t.
73 Niermann Grischa Ger Rab m.t.
74 Scanlon Mark Irl A2r m.t.
75 Salmon Benoit Fra C.a m.t.
76 Hruska Jan Cze Lst m.t.
77 Moller Claus Michael Den Alb m.t.
78 Gonzalez Galdeano Igor Esp Lst m.t.
79 Davis Allan Aus Lst m.t.
80 Nardello Daniele Ita Tmo m.t.
81 Etxebarria David Esp Eus m.t.
82 Etxebarria Unai Ven Eus m.t.
83 Scarponi Michele Ita Dve m.t.
84 Simeoni Filippo Ita Dve m.t.
85 Martinez Egoi Esp Eus m.t.
86 Padrnos Pavel Cze Usp m.t.
87 Loosli David Sui Sae m.t.
88 Perez Santiago Esp Pho m.t.
89 Fofonov Dmitriy Kaz Cof m.t.
90 Martin Ludovic Fra Rag m.t.
91 Ekimov Viatceslav Rus Usp m.t.
92 Peschel Uwe Ger Gst m.t.
93 Kroon Karsten Ned Rab m.t.
94 Zandio Xabier Esp Ibb m.t.
95 Astarloza Mikel Esp A2r m.t.
96 O'Grady Stuart Aus Cof m.t.
97 Hondo Danilo Ger Gst 32' 50"
98 Lang Sebastian Ger Gst m.t.
99 Flecha Juan Antonio Esp Fas 33' 27"
100 Kirchen Kim Lux Fas m.t.
101 Arvesen Kurt-Asle Nor Csc 33' 42"
102 Sorensen Nicki Den Csc m.t.
103 Ljungqvist Marcus Swe Alb 35' 24"
104 Wrolich Peter Aut Gst m.t.
105 Noe' Andrea Ita Alb m.t.
106 Guesdon Frédéric Fra Fdj m.t.
107 Bourquenoud Pierre Sui Rag m.t.
108 Boonen Tom Bel Qsd m.t.
109 Mc Ewen Robbie Aus Lot m.t.
110 Mori Massimiliano Ita Dve m.t.
111 Lotz Marc Ned Rab m.t.
112 Marichal Thierry Bel Lot m.t.
113 Dean Julian Nzl C.a m.t.
114 Baranowski Dariusz Pol Lst m.t.
115 Bouvard Gilles Fra Rag m.t.
116 Auger Guillaume Fra Rag m.t.
117 Cooke Baden Aus Fdj m.t.
118 Serrano Marcos Esp Lst m.t.
119 Commesso Salvatore Ita Sae m.t.
120 Wilson Matthew Aus Fdj m.t.
121 Secchiari Francesco Ita Dve m.t.
122 Nozal Isidro Esp Lst m.t.
123 Farazijn Peter Bel Cof m.t.
124 Vansevenant Wim Bel Lot m.t.
125 Baldato Fabio Ita Alb m.t.
126 Edaleine Christophe Fra Cof m.t.
127 Boogerd Michael Ned Rab m.t.
128 Pozzato Filippo Ita Fas m.t.
129 Cancellara Fabian Sui Fas m.t.
130 Tosatto Matteo Ita Fas m.t.
131 Moerenhout Koos Ned Lot m.t.
132 Knaven Servais Ned Qsd m.t.
133 Mengin Christophe Fra Fdj m.t.
134 Garcia Acosta Vicente Esp Ibb m.t.
135 Laurent Christophe Fra Rag m.t.
136 De Groot Bram Ned Rab m.t.
137 Wauters Marc Bel Rab m.t.
138 Zanini Stefano Ita Qsd m.t.
139 Joly Sébastien Fra C.a 35' 31"
140 Rinero Christophe Fra Rag m.t.
141 Hushovd Thor Nor C.a m.t.
142 Finot Frédéric Fra Rag m.t.
143 Nazon Jean-Patrick Fra A2r m.t.
144 Gonzalez Aitor Esp Fas 38' 44"
145 Dekker Erik Ned Rab 40' 01"
146 Engoulvent Jimmy Fra Cof m.t.
147 Casper Jimmy Fra Cof 40' 12"
Giunti Massimo Ita Dve Abandon
Rous Didier Fra Blb Abandon
Tombak Janeck Est Cof Abandon
Becke Daniel Ger Ibb Abandon
Bartoli Michele Ita Csc Abandon
Bertolini Alessandro Ita Alb Non Partant
Lefevre Laurent Fra Blb Non Partant
Heras Roberto Esp Lst Non Partant

General Classification after Stage 17

1 Armstrong Lance Usa Usp 74h 04' 56"
2 Basso Ivan Ita Csc 04' 09"
3 Klöden Andréas Ger Tmo 05' 11"
4 Ullrich Jan Ger Tmo 08' 08"
5 Azevedo José Por Usp 10' 41"
6 Mancebo Francisco Esp Ibb 11' 45"
7 Totschnig Georg Aut Gst 12' 56"
8 Sastre Carlos Esp Csc 15' 14"
9 Leipheimer Levi Usa Rab 16' 25"
10 Caucchioli Pietro Ita Alb 16' 33"
11 Pereiro Sio Oscar Esp Pho 17' 52"
12 Moreau Christophe Fra C.a 19' 57"
13 Rasmussen Mickael Den Rab 20' 20"
14 Simoni Gilberto Ita Sae 20' 41"
15 Voeckler Thomas Fra Blb 21' 12"
16 Virenque Richard Fra Qsd 21' 53"
17 Karpets Vladimir Rus Ibb 21' 57"
18 Casar Sandy Fra Fdj 23' 08"
19 Rubiera José Luis Esp Usp 29' 10"
20 Goubert Stephane Fra A2r 29' 33"
21 Merckx Axel Bel Lot 33' 54"
22 Rogers Michael Aus Qsd 34' 30"
23 Sevilla Oscar Esp Pho 36' 13"
24 Pineau Jérôme Fra Blb 36' 38"
25 Guerini Giuseppe Ita Tmo 38' 58"
26 Camano Iker Esp Eus 39' 24"
27 Landis Floyd Usa Usp 40' 20"
28 Brochard Laurent Fra A2r 41' 35"
29 Gutierrez José Enrique Esp Pho 45' 45"
30 Chavanel Sylvain Fra Blb 48' 41"
31 Scarponi Michele Ita Dve 55' 03"
32 Gonzalez Santos Esp Pho 57' 03"
33 Moncoutie David Fra Cof 57' 48"
34 Hincapie George Usa Usp 1h 00' 13"
35 Halgand Patrice Fra C.a 1h 01' 48"
36 Botcharov Alexandre Rus C.a 1h 03' 17"
37 Voigt Jens Ger Csc 1h 04' 07"
38 Petrov Evgeni Rus Sae 1h 06' 18"
39 Martinez Egoi Esp Eus 1h 06' 53"
40 Sabaliauskas Marius Ltu Sae 1h 07' 40"
41 Verbrugghe Rik Bel Lot 1h 07' 49"
42 Julich Bobby Usa Csc 1h 10' 13"
43 Gonzalez Galdeano Igor Esp Lst 1h 11' 13"
44 Mercado Juan Miguel Esp Qsd 1h 12' 13"
45 Gonzalez Aitor Esp Fas 1h 13' 09"
46 Beltran Manuel Esp Usp 1h 19' 02"
47 Robin Jean-Cyril Fra Fdj 1h 22' 14"
48 Perez Santiago Esp Pho 1h 24' 08"
49 Nardello Daniele Ita Tmo 1h 27' 59"
50 Landaluze Inigo Esp Eus 1h 30' 24"
51 Osa Aitor Esp Ibb 1h 30' 42"
52 Gutierrez José Ivan Esp Ibb 1h 34' 42"
53 Scholz Ronny Ger Gst 1h 35' 51"
54 Ludewig Jorg Ger Sae 1h 36' 02"
55 Serrano Marcos Esp Lst 1h 37' 19"
56 Bettini Paolo Ita Qsd 1h 40' 21"
57 Flores Iker Esp Eus 1h 41' 49"
58 Ivanov Serguei Rus Tmo 1h 42' 24"
59 Vandevelde Christian Usa Lst 1h 42' 48"
60 Zabel Erik Ger Tmo 1h 42' 50"
61 O'Grady Stuart Aus Cof 1h 44' 14"
62 Astarloza Mikel Esp A2r 1h 44' 25"
63 Dufaux Laurent Sui Qsd 1h 47' 32"
64 Kirchen Kim Lux Fas 1h 48' 58"
65 Niermann Grischa Ger Rab 1h 49' 00"
66 Peron Andrea Ita Csc 1h 49' 49"
67 Noval Gonzalez Benjamin Esp Usp 1h 51' 43"
68 Bruseghin Marzio Ita Fas 1h 52' 35"
69 Moller Claus Michael Den Alb 1h 54' 16"
70 Aldag Rolf Ger Tmo 1h 54' 22"
71 Calzati Sylvain Fra Rag 1h 58' 41"
72 Portal Nicolas Fra A2r 1h 59' 08"
73 Nozal Isidro Esp Lst 2h 01' 14"
74 Boogerd Michael Ned Rab 2h 02' 42"
75 Etxebarria David Esp Eus 2h 04' 41"
76 Botero Santiago Col Tmo 2h 05' 47"
77 Fedrigo Pierrick Fra C.a 2h 06' 46"
78 Padrnos Pavel Cze Usp 2h 07' 50"
79 Lang Sebastian Ger Gst 2h 09' 04"
80 Grabsch Bert Ger Pho 2h 10' 09"
81 Jalabert Nicolas Fra Pho 2h 10' 26"
82 Salmon Benoit Fra C.a 2h 11' 05"
83 Ekimov Viatceslav Rus Usp 2h 12' 09"
84 Mengin Christophe Fra Fdj 2h 15' 48"
85 Da Cruz Carlos Fra Fdj 2h 17' 25"
86 Scanlon Mark Irl A2r 2h 18' 12"
87 Sorensen Nicki Den Csc 2h 18' 14"
88 Etxebarria Unai Ven Eus 2h 19' 51"
89 Rinero Christophe Fra Rag 2h 21' 20"
90 Sunderland Scott Aus Alb 2h 23' 23"
91 Baranowski Dariusz Pol Lst 2h 23' 31"
92 Zandio Xabier Esp Ibb 2h 23' 59"
93 Davis Allan Aus Lst 2h 25' 06"
94 Noe' Andrea Ita Alb 2h 26' 08"
95 Beneteau Walter Fra Blb 2h 26' 09"
96 Fofonov Dmitriy Kaz Cof 2h 27' 49"
97 Krivtsov Yuriy Ukr A2r 2h 28' 10"
98 Moerenhout Koos Ned Lot 2h 28' 35"
99 Garcia Acosta Vicente Esp Ibb 2h 28' 50"
100 Lotz Marc Ned Rab 2h 28' 58"
101 Marichal Thierry Bel Lot 2h 29' 56"
102 Charteau Anthony Fra Blb 2h 31' 01"
103 Flecha Juan Antonio Esp Fas 2h 31' 42"
104 Loosli David Sui Sae 2h 32' 37"
105 Hushovd Thor Nor C.a 2h 33' 54"
106 Farazijn Peter Bel Cof 2h 35' 36"
107 Tosatto Matteo Ita Fas 2h 36' 30"
108 Elmiger Martin Sui Pho 2h 36' 53"
109 Hondo Danilo Ger Gst 2h 38' 04"
110 Wrolich Peter Aut Gst 2h 40' 00"
111 Kroon Karsten Ned Rab 2h 40' 58"
112 Renier Franck Fra Blb 2h 42' 21"
113 De Groot Bram Ned Rab 2h 42' 41"
114 Simeoni Filippo Ita Dve 2h 42' 55"
115 Cancellara Fabian Sui Fas 2h 43' 25"
116 Wauters Marc Bel Rab 2h 45' 29"
117 Pozzato Filippo Ita Fas 2h 45' 33"
118 Martin Ludovic Fra Rag 2h 46' 01"
119 Mori Massimiliano Ita Dve 2h 47' 00"
120 Commesso Salvatore Ita Sae 2h 48' 01"
121 Boonen Tom Bel Qsd 2h 48' 12"
122 Mc Ewen Robbie Aus Lot 2h 49' 01"
123 Hruska Jan Cze Lst 2h 49' 29"
124 Dean Julian Nzl C.a 2h 50' 09"
125 Bourquenoud Pierre Sui Rag 2h 50' 09"
126 Arvesen Kurt-Asle Nor Csc 2h 50' 19"
127 Guesdon Frédéric Fra Fdj 2h 50' 27"
128 Bouvard Gilles Fra Rag 2h 50' 35"
129 Zanini Stefano Ita Qsd 2h 50' 45"
130 Eisel Bernhard Aut Fdj 2h 54' 34"
131 Peschel Uwe Ger Gst 2h 54' 53"
132 Baldato Fabio Ita Alb 2h 56' 58"
133 Laurent Christophe Fra Rag 2h 57' 20"
134 Ljungqvist Marcus Swe Alb 2h 58' 04"
135 Nazon Jean-Patrick Fra A2r 3h 00' 12"
136 Dekker Erik Ned Rab 3h 01' 05"
137 Auger Guillaume Fra Rag 3h 01' 12"
138 Engoulvent Jimmy Fra Cof 3h 02' 23"
139 Cooke Baden Aus Fdj 3h 03' 44"
140 Knaven Servais Ned Qsd 3h 10' 08"
141 Vansevenant Wim Bel Lot 3h 10' 53"
142 Secchiari Francesco Ita Dve 3h 12' 20"
143 Edaleine Christophe Fra Cof 3h 13' 14"
144 Wilson Matthew Aus Fdj 3h 23' 28"
145 Finot Frédéric Fra Rag 3h 29' 17"
146 Joly Sébastien Fra C.a 3h 42' 24"
147 Casper Jimmy Fra Cof 3h 43' 48"

Points Competition after Stage 17 - Top 25

1 Mc Ewen Robbie Aus Lot 225 Pts
2 Hushovd Thor Nor C.a 213 Pts
3 Zabel Erik Ger Tmo 212 Pts
4 O'Grady Stuart Aus Cof 204 Pts
5 Hondo Danilo Ger Gst 189 Pts
6 Armstrong Lance Usa Usp 128 Pts
7 Boonen Tom Bel Qsd 128 Pts
8 Klöden Andréas Ger Tmo 121 Pts
9 Brochard Laurent Fra A2r 118 Pts
10 Nazon Jean-Patrick Fra A2r 116 Pts
11 Ullrich Jan Ger Tmo 88 Pts
12 Mancebo Francisco Esp Ibb 86 Pts
13 Pineau Jérôme Fra Blb 79 Pts
14 Kirchen Kim Lux Fas 78 Pts
15 Cooke Baden Aus Fdj 77 Pts
16 Basso Ivan Ita Csc 73 Pts
17 Totschnig Georg Aut Gst 60 Pts
18 Scarponi Michele Ita Dve 60 Pts
19 Davis Allan Aus Lst 60 Pts
20 Voeckler Thomas Fra Blb 58 Pts
21 Pozzato Filippo Ita Fas 50 Pts
22 Landaluze Inigo Esp Eus 50 Pts
23 Wrolich Peter Aut Gst 50 Pts
24 Cancellara Fabian Sui Fas 47 Pts
25 Leipheimer Levi Usa Rab 45 Pts

Mountains Classification after Stage 17 - Top 25

1 Virenque Richard Fra Qsd 226 Pts
2 Armstrong Lance Usa Usp 168 Pts
3 Basso Ivan Ita Csc 119 Pts
4 Ullrich Jan Ger Tmo 115 Pts
5 Klöden Andréas Ger Tmo 112 Pts
6 Moreau Christophe Fra C.a 112 Pts
7 Rasmussen Mickael Den Rab 109 Pts
8 Mancebo Francisco Esp Ibb 77 Pts
9 Voigt Jens Ger Csc 71 Pts
10 Azevedo José Por Usp 71 Pts
11 Merckx Axel Bel Lot 65 Pts
12 Simoni Gilberto Ita Sae 64 Pts
13 Landis Floyd Usa Usp 59 Pts
14 Bettini Paolo Ita Qsd 54 Pts
15 Chavanel Sylvain Fra Blb 53 Pts
16 Sastre Carlos Esp Csc 50 Pts
17 Totschnig Georg Aut Gst 41 Pts
18 Aldag Rolf Ger Tmo 38 Pts
19 Moncoutie David Fra Cof 36 Pts
20 Martin Ludovic Fra Rag 33 Pts
21 Gonzalez Santos Esp Pho 31 Pts
22 Simeoni Filippo Ita Dve 25 Pts
23 Guerini Giuseppe Ita Tmo 24 Pts
24 Karpets Vladimir Rus Ibb 21 Pts
25 Brochard Laurent Fra A2r 20 Pts

Youth Competition after Stage 17

1 Voeckler Thomas Fra Blb 74h 26' 08"
2 Karpets Vladimir Rus Ibb 00' 45"
3 Casar Sandy Fra Fdj 01' 56"
4 Rogers Michael Aus Qsd 13' 18"
5 Pineau Jérôme Fra Blb 15' 26"
6 Camano Iker Esp Eus 18' 12"
7 Chavanel Sylvain Fra Blb 27' 29"
8 Scarponi Michele Ita Dve 33' 51"
9 Astarloza Mikel Esp A2r 1h 23' 13"
10 Noval Gonzalez Benjamin Esp Usp 1h 30' 31"
11 Calzati Sylvain Fra Rag 1h 37' 29"
12 Portal Nicolas Fra A2r 1h 37' 56"
13 Lang Sebastian Ger Gst 1h 47' 52"
14 Scanlon Mark Irl A2r 1h 57' 00"
15 Davis Allan Aus Lst 2h 03' 54"
16 Krivtsov Yuriy Ukr A2r 2h 06' 58"
17 Charteau Anthony Fra Blb 2h 09' 49"
18 Loosli David Sui Sae 2h 11' 25"
19 Cancellara Fabian Sui Fas 2h 22' 13"
20 Pozzato Filippo Ita Fas 2h 24' 21"
21 Boonen Tom Bel Qsd 2h 27' 00"
22 Eisel Bernhard Aut Fdj 2h 33' 22"
23 Engoulvent Jimmy Fra Cof 2h 41' 11"
24 Edaleine Christophe Fra Cof 2h 52' 02"
25 Joly Sébastien Fra C.a 3h 21' 12"

Teams Classification after Stage 17

1 T-Mobile Team  Tmo 220h 17' 09"
2 US Postal - Berry Floor  Usp 05' 12"
3 Team CSC  Csc 10' 49"
4 Phonak Hearing Systems  Pho 52' 04"
5 Quick Step - Davitamon  Qsd 54' 36"
6 Illes Balears - B. Santander  Ibb 58' 07"
7 Brioches La Boulangere  Blb 1h 14' 53"
8 Rabobank  Rab 1h 30' 54"
9 Euskaltel - Euskadi  Eus 1h 31' 29"
10 Credit Agricole  C.a 1h 31' 42"
11 Saeco  Sae 1h 54' 30"
12 AG2R Prevoyance  A2r 2h 09' 41"
13 Liberty Seguros  Lst 2h 47' 31"
14 Gerolsteiner  Gst 2h 52' 51"
15 Lotto - Domo  Lot 3h 00' 14"
16 Fdjeux.com  Fdj 3h 05' 05"
17 Alessio - Bianchi  Alb 3h 23' 51"
18 Fassa Bortolo  Fas 4h 12' 31"
19 Cofidis Credit Par Telephone  Cof 4h 22' 53"
20 Domina Vacanze  Dve 4h 48' 41"
21 R.A.G.T. Semences - MG Rover  Rag 5h 59' 28"


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