A rare feat has been accomplished at the Dauphiné Libéré on Wednesday: CSC rider David Zabriskie won the second individual time trial in the same race. A few days after taking the prologue win, the young American confirmed his skills against the clock on a 43km-long parcours in Bourg-de-Péage - but Zabriskie has his mind made up to show that this is not his only talent.
"Of course I'm happy to win again, but I'm even more curious about how far I can take it when we start climbing," said Zabriskie, relaxed as usual. "I have to be honest and say that I haven't been preparing much for the time trials this season, because I more or less just went up and down the mountains during my training sessions. However, I don't believe I can be up there with the very best on the climbs, but at least I now have a decent gap on my opponents."
"It was simply amazing to watch Dave ride the time trial today," added sports director Alain Gallopin. "He was definitely in a league of his own, and I think he did a perfect time trial. He's outstanding in this discipline, and today no one was able to reach his level. Now we just have to wait and see what he's capable of in tomorrow's stage, which will be very hard, but definitely interesting for us."
The third stage developed into an American battle as three compatriots finished in the spots just behind Zabriskie: at 53 seconds, Floyd Landis (Phonak) placed second, followed by Levi Leipheimer (Gerolsteiner) and George Hincapie (Discovery Channel), who all showed their excellent form a few weeks ahead of the Tour de France. In the overall classification of the Dauphiné, young Belgian Philippe Gilbert (Française des Jeux) held on to the lead, while Zabriskie moved to second place before Thursday's tough test to the legendary Mont Ventoux, where the Dauphiné will see its first summit finish.