Van Den Broeck Wins Stage 1 of Dauphine Libere
Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Quick Step) has won Stage 1 of the Dauphine Libere.
Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Quick Step) has won Stage 1 of the Dauphine Libere. The Belgian surged away from the field to take the hilly, 154-km ride from Albertville to Saint-Pierre-de-Chartreuse in 3:35:42. Joaquin Rodriguez (Katusha) finished second at 0:06, and Cadel Evans (BMC) took third at 0:07. Alexander Vinokourov (Astana) has taken the overall lead from Lars Boom (Rabobank).
After the peloton reeled in an early break by Jeremy Roy (Francaise des Jeux), Vincent Jerome (Europcar), Sven Vandousselaere (Omega Pharma), and Leonardo Duque (Cofidis) escaped at 22 km. The trio forged a six-minute lead by about 40 km.
Rabobank began to chase, and HTC, BMC, and Astana assisted the Dutch squad. The bunch reeled in the break with 10 km remaining.
As the climb to the finish began, Konstantin Sivtsov (HTC) attacked and Van Den Broeck and Thomas Voeckler (Europcar) followed. With three km to go, the peloton caught the escapees, but Van Den Broeck tried again and stayed clear. Rodriguez set out after the Quick Stepper in the last km, but to no avail.
In the overall, Vinokourov leads Van Den Broeck by 0:05 and Evans by 0:07. Stage 3 should not affect the general classification. The rolling, 179-km run from Voiron to Lyon should be won by a sprinter. Who will it be? Julian Dean (Garmin)? Simon Gerrans (Sky)? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!