Critical Section

TDF stage 5 / flat - Voeckler wins as break stays away! / Cancellara keeps yellow

Wednesday,  07/08/09  11:32 PM

TDF 09 stage 5 - Highroad and Garmin chase in the wind, but can't catch the breakToday we had the feel-good story of the Tour (so far :), as Thomas Voeckler led a break which was out all day and stayed away, winning by seven seconds in front of the field after staying out for 180K in a rolling stage from Le Cap d’Agde to Perpignan.  Voeckler is a popular favorite ever since he unexpectedly wore the yellow jersey for a week in 2004, a gamey attacker who never quits.  It is always great when the break is able to stay out - today, because the peloton played games with itself in the wind - and also great to have a French athlete win a stage.

The six-man break formed early, at 20K, and hung in front of the peloton all day (not even by that much, max eight minutes), but as sprinter's teams including Highroad and Garmin (pictured) tried to close the gap the winds broke the peloton into echelons.  Everyone was attentive because of the gap which opened in stage 3, so there was a lot of back and forth which disrupted the chase.  Voeckler attacked the break at the end and stayed away.  Most of the peloton probably didn't care, although it kept sprinters like Mark Cavendish and Tyler Farrar from having a chance to compete for the win.  Cavendish did win a bunch sprint for third, adding to his green-jersey-leading points total.

Tomorrow's stage should be interesting; it takes place on mostly flat roads in the East of Spain, from Girona to Barcelona, but the finish is uphill and there could be potential for attacks at the very end.  Armstrong only needs a fraction of a second to take yellow away from Cancellara; who knows what could happen?

It is always great when a break succeeds; it is fun to watch the underdogs win, and it encourages everyone to be in the next break.  Every rider can feel "hey, that could have been me!"

[ Tour de France 2009: all postsindex ]

this date in:
About Me

Greatest Hits
Correlation vs. Causality
The Tyranny of Email
Unnatural Selection
On Blame
Try, or Try Not
Books and Wine
Emergent Properties
God and Beauty
Moving Mount Fuji
The Nest
Rock 'n Roll
IQ and Populations
Are You a Bright?
Adding Value
The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
Toy Story
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
solving bongard problems
visiting Titan
unintelligent design
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
second gear
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
universal healthcare
triple double
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Holiday Inn
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
vote smart
exact nonsense
introducing eyesFinder
to space
where are the desktop apps?
still the first bird
electoral fail
progress ratches
2020 explained