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Tour de France news shorts

By:
Cycling News
Published:
July 15, 2011, 8:58 BST,
Updated:
July 15, 2011, 10:37 BST
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Friday, July 15, 2011
Race:
Tour de France
The view down the mountain.

The view down the mountain.

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Bruyneel gets breathalysed, McGee positive despite losses, Kreuziger makes a move, Cunego proves his form

RadioShack's Tour continues to be luckless

As if Andreas Kloden's crash on the road to Luz-Ardiden wasn't damning enough, things took an interesting turn when director sportif Johan Bruyneel was pulled over during the race to be breathalysed.

Bruyneel recounted the incident on his twitterfeed.

"And here's a first. Got pulled over IN the race today by a gendarme and he made me do an alcohol test, duriing the race."

"For the record - it was negative."

"The race went perfect until we hit Luz-Ardiden," says McGee

Bradley McGee was happy to have gotten through another day of the Tour de France without too much drama despite his team captain, Alberto Contador losing more time to many of his general classification rivals. McGee however was adamant that after so much that has gone wrong so far in this year's race for the team, the time loss - though uncharacteristic for Contador - was not race ending.

"We've seen so many of the major contenders go down, and I'm sorry - but it really knocks [it] out of them," the SaxoBank-Sungard director explained to Ozcycling.com. "We saw with Kloden today, going down like that - just one crash can really ruin your focus and it can be enough to really hurt your Tour."

"They're never quite the same after a crash - it takes a while to get the fluency and the power back in the legs."

When asked about Contador's chances going forward, McGee was positive, but praised the work of the Schlecks in the final five kilometres.

"It's not a knock out blow, but it's definitely one in the ribs," he joked.

Kreuziger's day on the attack unsuccessful

Roman Kreuziger (Astana) showed his team is still very much in the race, with a long-rage attack midway through the race in the company of French champion Sylvain Chavanel. The Czech who is still recovering from his own crashes earlier in the week showed glimpses of his Giro form as he rode the Col du Tourmalet.

He was close to joining with the group of Geraint Thomas (Sky) and Jeremy Roy (FDJ) but just as the catch appeared imminent the break accelerated and the Kreuziger was unable to make-up the deficit.

"I felt pain in my back and the climb was very long. The pain was the price to pay [for the crash] because it’s been quite a long time since
I've ridden on this type of climb."

In the end the Czech rider decided to sit up and save himself for other chances later in the race.

"I suffered alot and so I preferred to keep forces for future opportunities."

Cunego shows his strength

Il piccolo principe showed he's got some of the form that brought him a high finish in the 2006 Tour de France, and the Italian explained after the race that while the day was difficult, he was satisfied with his ride.

"The pace on the last climb was high but the real battle began when the Schleck brothers attacked," said Cunego. "I preferred to pedal at my own pace and not to reply directly to the attacks: it was the right choice that allowed me to reach the arrival with the other top riders.

"In the last kilometre the road was not as steep and I could not keep as high speed after all the switchbacks, that's why I lost a little bit of time [at the end]."

Lampre director Roberto Damiani also praised the Italian's performance.

"He confirmed that he's one of the top riders of this Tour de France and that his teammates are skilful in supporting him: today Loosli and Bono were perfect. Damiano lost five seconds in the finale metres, but realisitically I don't think this is a problem."

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