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Tour de France Cycling News for July 11, 2007

Date published:
July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
  • Sébastien Joly diagnosed with cancer

    Sébastien Joly (centre)
    Article published:
    July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne Late last month, French rider Sébastien Joly announced that he...

    By Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne

    Late last month, French rider Sébastien Joly announced that he would stop riding after a tumour was discovered at an undisclosed location in his body, and the Française des Jeux rider found out yesterday that the growth was cancerous. "I expected it," he said from his home in the Rhône valley. "I'll undergo several months of radiotherapy and chemotherapy. I'm hopeful because I was told the treatment is pretty efficient for this kind of cancer."

    Joly was full of praise for the members of the cycling community who have leant him much support. "I have received a lot of supportive messages and I thank all the people who did it," he said. "I'm prepared to put a lot of effort into my recovery. I have come to terms with my sickness now. I watch the Tour de France every day and I aim at having a quiet time."

    Joly, 28, was in the peak of form when his diagnosis came, having won the Paris-Camembert earlier this year.

  • Reactions to the stage into Compiègne

    Fabian Cancellara (Team CSC)
    Article published:
    July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Fabian Cancellara (Team CSC) - First: Fabian Cancellara commented on his victory, even though...

    Fabian Cancellara (Team CSC) - First:

    Fabian Cancellara commented on his victory, even though immediately after the stage finish he declared "I am almost speechless. To win in France with the yellow jersey, that is just fantastic." He later elaborated that "it was absolutely fantastic to win in the yellow jersey. I was afraid I'd loose it during those final 30 kilometres and now in stead I'm standing here with a victory, which I'll remember for a very long time."

    Erik Zabel (Milram) - Second:

    Erik Zabel beat all the sprinters, but made his calculations without the bold move of Fabian Cancellara from CSC. So instead of a stage win, the German added another second place to his palmarès. Describing the day he confirmed that there "was a cross wind that hit us slightly from the front, so it was normal that CSC would only ride as fast as the break.

    "There are so many good riders here, and it would be unjust to Fabian to not take him into account for the stage win, but I would have bet more on Tom Boonen, Daniele Bennati or Robbie McEwen. That the yellow jersey, Fabian Cancellara, could get so much advantage over us on the cobbles that it was enough to beat us, well, we just have to say without envy that that was 'extraordinaire'.

    "For me it was a normal stage. Headwind, very long [distance]. When it starts out slowly then the finale is even faster. It was of course ideal for Fabian to attack on the cobbles. And for me it was a very long sprint. So overall it is ok. [Second place] is not bad for my age [smiles]."

    Sébastien Hinault (Crédit Agricole):

    Sébastien Hinault, who was working for his Crédit Agricole teammate Thor Hushovd, revealed that "the break was playing with our nerves. They decided to save energy so they would have some strength for the finale, knowing that the peloton would be content to leave the gap at around five...

  • Pre-race chatter

    Article published:
    July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne

    The talk of the town was of course the big crash at the end of stage two into Gent. After their...

    The talk of the town was of course the big crash at the end of stage two into Gent. After their losses were counted several riders commented on the previous day's activities before they were heading off to stage three.

    Cadel Evans, who's main interest is to contend for the top spots in Paris, told Cyclingnews' John Trevorrow that it is important to "stay out of trouble, same [like] every year. The Tour's first week - that is how it goes." In those dangerous conditions Evans just hopes that "there is no crash." His main focus is on "staying out of trouble and staying safe; not expending energy."

    Evans relies on his teammates for comfort. "I got my guys, Dario [Cioni], Mario [Aerts], Fred [Rodriguez]. They stay all around me and make sure I am all right and keep me in good position near the front."

    Asked if he worries about any stages before the Alps, when the race really begins for him, the Australian reveals that "no, for me it's the same every year. The big mountain stages and the time trials, that's always where the classification is made. The rest is all right, well, as long as you don't lose any time."

    Michael Rodgers of T-Mobile found that yesterday was "a pretty calm stage really. I was a bit nervous before the start, but for me personally, compared to previous years, these [early stages] haven’t been hard for me." He wasn't quite sure about his knee yet, acknowledging that "It's hard to tell, really. There are no problems at the moment, it's when we get to the hard stages that we will find out."

    Simon Gerrans reckons that "every guy had instructions from his team boss to get up the front. It's like a washing machine in there. As quick as you get yourself to the front you get shuffled down the back and have to do it all again."

  • Augé emulates Jacky Durand

    Stéphane Augé (Fra) Cofidis
    Article published:
    July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne

    By Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne Every Tour de France has one rider who is destined to spend...

    By Jean-François Quénet in Compiègne

    Every Tour de France has one rider who is destined to spend hundreds of kilometres in futile breakaways. In the past, that honour belonged to a rider by the name of Jacky Durand, but this year is has been inherited by another Frenchman, Stéphane Augé. Ever since Durand soloed to victory over 217 kilometres in the 1992 Tour of Flanders, few have dared to dream as big. Now, the mantle has been passed to Cofidis' Augé, and he has taken the mountain leader's jersey along with his breakaway reputation after a valiant bridge to the break on stage three.

    "Now I've even realized that it can work," said Augé, who has a stage of the Tour of Poland, of the Tour of Germany and of the Tour du Limousin on his record book. He also won Cholet-Pays de Loire this year, although he was the only Cofidis rider in a large breakaway. Already named most aggressive rider after stage one, his successful bridge to the stage three breakaway on the way into Compiègne, Augé finds a higher purpose by riding in front of the peloton.

    When he turned pro with Festina in 2000 at the late age of 26, Stéphane Augé had no idea whether or not he would have a long career. He was talking about taking over the family farm in Poey-de-Lescar, near Pau, but now he has found his place in cycling. After moving to Jean Delatour, then Crédit Agricole and now Cofidis, Augé has become a rider that the younger professionals can look up to and get advice from.

    Augé reckons the best way to teach is to lead by example by going for the breakaways. When he rode away for 175 kilometres on stage one, he said he didn't worry. "I do about 3000 kilometres of breakaway yearly anyway," he said. "And believe me: I'll break clear again because I want to be...

  • More champagne for CSC

    Fabian Cancellara
    Article published:
    July 11, 2007, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Shane Stokes in Compiegne, France

    By Shane Stokes in Compiegne, France It's often said that wearing a maillot jaune adds strength to a...

    Cancellara swoops with stunning attack

    By Shane Stokes in Compiegne, France

    It's often said that wearing a maillot jaune adds strength to a rider, and this certainly seems to be the case with Fabian Cancellara. Last month he won the opening prologue of the Tour de Suisse and rode out of his skin the following two days in defence of his lead. He finished third in a bunch gallop on stage two and then climbed very strongly the next afternoon to remain at the head of affairs.

    Cancellara may have taken many of his career wins in the time trial, but put a yellow jersey on his back and he considerably raises his game. Today's race to Compiegne underlined that perfectly. Inspired by his hold on the general classification and also, perhaps, by the fact that he won a Paris-Roubaix which departed from this town, the big Swiss rider thundered over the cobbles just before the final kilometre, shot out of the main bunch shortly afterwards to bridge to the four breakaway riders, then continued on past them to scoop the win.

    Erik Zabel (Milram), Danilo Napolitano (Lampre) and Tom Boonen (QuickStep - Innergetic) were closest to him but couldn't get by before the line.

    "I didn't think that I could win this stage today," he said afterwards, delighted with his third ever Tour stage victory. "I only wanted to get to the finish and not crash. It was a very long day, seven hours on the bicycle. The wind made it very difficult, we couldn't go any faster. We are not machines.

    To read the full interview with Fabian Cancellara, click here.

    Full Stage 3 coverage: Stage details, Full results, report & photos, ,