German team Gerolsteiner kicked off the Eneco Tour in the best possible way, with Stefan Schumacher winning the prologue in Den Helder. Schumacher was 0.45 seconds faster than George Hincapie (Discovery Channel), with early leader Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) taking third.
"My form is really good," said Schumacher. "It is very satisfying to have finished ahead of a number of specialists. But it doesn't surprise me. I will try everything I can to stay in front. I should do well especially in the final stages."
"It really went well for Stefan, the Tour got off to a great start," said directeur sportif Christian Wegmann, who knew from the first kilometres that Schumacher would do well. "I knew the times of the others and knew that Stefan was very fast under way. And in the end it was enough, even if it was very close."
On defending the jersey, Wegmann said, "Sure it will be tough. Especially the sprinter teams, who think they have good chances, will make life difficult for us. But we will do everything, to keep it. And even if Schumi loses the jersey, then he has laid a good basis for being near the front at the end of the Tour."
Click here for the Full results, report & photos of stage 1.