July 4th, 2006


the tour in holland

Today's stage reuses the finale for the Tour of Holland, which was designed to be won in a breakaway, either a long one or one instigated near the end. Jens Voigt this morning put on some deep profile wheels, which help in a long breakaway but hurt in a sprint, and then promptly launched a long breakaway. He took a man named Jerome Pineau with him who is now the only survivor of the breakaway. In a few minutes we'll find out if he can make it to the end of the stage without getting caught. Ten minutes ago I'd have said "no way" but in the meanwhile there have been two crashes in the main pack which have slowed them down some and he may be able to make it.

Sadly, Valverde broke his collarbone in one of the crashes. He was well positioned in the pack to avoid getting caught behind someone else's crash, but that doesn't help you avoid making a crash yourself.