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Sergio Paulinho Beats Kiryienka in Two Man Sprint and Wins Stage 10 of 2010 Tour de France

News & Results

07/14/2010| 0 comments
by AP, with additional commentary by Roadcycling.com
Photo copyright Fotoreporter Sirotti.
Photo copyright Fotoreporter Sirotti.

Sergio Paulinho Beats Kiryienka in Two Man Sprint and Wins Stage 10 of 2010 Tour de France

Portugal's Sergio Paulinho gave Team RadioShack its first success of the 2010 Tour de France on Wednesday, winning the 10th stage in a two-man sprint among breakaway riders.

Portugal's Sergio Paulinho gave Team RadioShack its first success of the 2010 Tour de France on Wednesday, winning the 10th stage in a two-man sprint among breakaway riders.

Andy Schleck of Team Saxo Bank retained the yellow jersey. He finished in the main pack more than 14 minutes back, alongside his biggest rivals for the title.

Paulinho edged Vasil Kiryienka of Belarus and Team Caisse d'Epargne over the sun-baked 111-mile trek from Chambery to Gap that featured one difficult climb - the Laffrey pass - as the Tour de France left the Alps.

Paulinho pointed skyward then sucked his thumb after beating Kiryienka by less than half a wheel at the finish. They both clocked 5 hours, 10 minutes, 56 seconds. Belgium's Dries Devenyns was third: 1:29.

It was the Portuguese rider's first individual stage win at the Tour, though he was part of the Astana squad - including Lance Armstrong and 2010 Tour winner Alberto Contador - that won the team time-trial last year.

RadioShack leader Armstrong fell out of contention in the first Alpine stage on Sunday after getting tangled up in three crashes and losing crucial minutes against the top contenders. The team is now banking on the podium hopes of Levi Leipheimer, who is sixth overall.

"This is a victory we've been looking for a while, after all the bad luck we had in the first week," Paulinho said. "I hope this victory gives morale back to our team."

The 30-year-old Paulinho and Kiryienka, of Caisse d'Epargne, were part of a six-man breakaway made up of riders far back in the overall standings. The pack finished 14:19 behind Paulinho.

Riding with a fractured left elbow from a crash on Sunday, Evans called it "a good sign" that he felt better during the 179 kilometer race. "I felt much better but obviously it was a different kind of race today," Evans said.

The Australian will undergo additional X-rays later this week to determine if there is any displacement of the injury. Evans finished 44th today.

Cervelo TestTeam's Thor Hushovd did his best to keep his lead in the sprinter competiton for the green jersey. "It was horrible today. It was very hard again today. The heat made the stage twice as hard. I suffered like everyone else."

Hushovd added "The big battle for the green jersey started today. Now every point matters. We will have to battle every day like this. I have to grab points when I can. I am going to try and win another stage. That would be the best way to gain points. It will be a real battle all the way to Paris."

The overall Tour standings didn't change. Schleck leads Contador by 41 seconds, while Samuel Sanchez of Spain was third, 2:45 back. Leipheimer is 3:59 behind.

Riders are likely to breathe a bit easier during Thursday's 11th stage, a flatter 114.65-mile route from Sisteron to Bourg-les-Valence.

Stay tuned to Roadcycling.com for more Tour de France 2010 coverage, spread the word, and please support our advertisers - they make our coverage possible.

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