Vinokourov Wins Olympic Road Race in London
Alexander Vinokourov (Kazakhstan) is the Olympic road race champion.
25 km left, the leaders led the peloton by 1:05. Obviously, the medalists would come from the lead group.
Lars Petter Nordhaug (Norway) attacked, but Tejay van Garderen (United States) brought him back. Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland) misjudged a turn and crashed into the barriers, injuring his collarbone, reducing the lead group to 15 riders, and imperilling his defense of his gold medal in the Olympic men's time trial on Wednesday.
Spain and the United States led the lead group. With 10 km left, the leaders led the peloton by 0:56.
Vinokourov and Uran bolted away from their companions. The rest of the lead group debated who should chase. While they debated, Vino and Uran rode. The pair collaborated well until the last km, when they began to play cat and mouse. With 400 m left, Uran led the pair. With 200 m to go, Uran looked left, and Vinokourov burst past the Colombian on the right to win. Eight seconds later, Kristoff led the chasers home to take bronze.
Because of his positive test for blood doping at the 2007 Tour de France and his subsequent ban, Vinokourov is a somewhat controversial gold medalist. However, he insisted that he is now riding clean and that 2007 is a closed book. The Kazakh said, "It is nice to finish off my career with a gold medal. I will still race in the time trial on Wednesday, but I will just spin. I have what I have wanted. I have the gold medal, and I can envision my retirement."
Vinokourov might spin in Wednesday's Olympic time trial, but other riders will not. Who will win? Bradley Wiggins (Great Britain)? Tony Martin (Germany)? Taylor Phinney (United States)? Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland)? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!