Paris - Nice 2013

March 3-10, 2013, Houilles, France, Road - WorldTour

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Daniel Benson

Hello and welcome to our live coverage from the penultimate stage of this year's Paris-Nice.

  1. 13:10:05 GMT

    Today's stage is a 220km race from Manosque to Nice. There are five categorised climbs but the two to watch are the Cote de Cabris and Col du Ferrier. Both are 1st cat and both are coming up within the next 30 km or so. There's no mountain top finish today though, with the final climb roughly 50km from the finish.

  2. 13:10:54 GMT

    • Yellow Jersey

    After yesterday's heroics from Richie Porte, here's where the race stands on GC:


    1 Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 24:26:08
    2 Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin Sharp 0:00:32
    3 Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:00:42
    4 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:49
    5 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:00:52
    6 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:53
    7 Simon Spilak (Slo) Team Katusha
    8 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre-Merida 0:00:54
    9 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre-Merida
    10 Peter Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team 0:00:56

  3. 13:11:50 GMT

    If the Sky leader can make it through today unscathed he'll almost certainly take the overall honours in this year's race, a year after teammate Bradley Wiggins won.

  4. 110km remaining from 220km

    13:12:37 GMT

    To bring you up to speed, we've raced 110km and there's a group of 11 riders up the road. They have  gap of 3:30.

  5. 13:14:47 GMT

    Simon Clarke (GreenEdge) Egor Silin (Astana), Gatis Smukulis (Katusha), Eduard Vorganov (Katusha), Brent Bookwalter (BMC), Arnold Jeannesson (FDJ), Julien El Fares (Sojasun), Borut Bozic (Astana), Jerome Pineau (Omega Pharma QuickStep), Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) Johann Tschopp (IAM Cycling) are the riders in the break today.

  6. 13:16:34 GMT

    • Red Polka Dot Jersey

    That's a big move from Tschopp and it would be a huge result if the IAM Cycling team picked up the KOM in this race. The Tour de France wildcards have yet to be decided and although the Swiss team are outsiders, this could be a major factor when ASO sit down and decide on the final outcome.

  7. 13:23:25 GMT

    We've already had a number of riders pull out of the race. Robert Gesink, Andreas Klier, Thomas De Gendt, and Offredo have all gone home.

  8. 13:26:41 GMT

    • Red Polka Dot Jersey

    Tschopp has 40 points, an unbeatable lead in the KOM now. Hupond is on second with 24 points and as he's not in the break , the jersey is won.

  9. 100km remaining from 220km

    13:28:44 GMT

    As for the break's chances of staying away, it's not great. Jeannesson is just 1:49 down on Porte so while he's the virtual leader of the race, it's unlikely to last. The gap to the break after 120km of racing is 3:15

  10. 13:40:32 GMT

    Sky continue to lead the peloton with the break about to tackle the lower slopes of the 7.6km long Côte de Cabris. The slopes average 5.8per cent. 

  11. 13:42:33 GMT

    Staying with Sky but away from Paris-Nice, Mathew Hayman has refused to talk about Leinders. You can read the story here.

  12. 13:43:49 GMT

    While Peter Sagan has talked about beating Mark Cavendish for the first time in a head-to-head sprint.

    Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling) salutes as he crosses the line

  13. 86km remaining from 220km

    13:48:31 GMT

    Katusha's Latvian Smukulis has been dropped from the break, so there are 10 leaders left.

  14. 13:49:48 GMT

    As David Millar and Mark Renshaw are among the riders dropped from the peloton.

  15. 13:57:27 GMT

    • Euskaltel-Euskadi's 2012 Jersey

    And Renshaw has thrown in the towel and abandoned the race, just as Euskaltel move to the front and give Sky a hand. The Spanish team don't have any interest in the GC but they've had a poor race and this is their last chance of a stage win.

  16. 82km remaining from 220km

    13:58:03 GMT

    The gap has been brought back to 2:20.

  17. 14:09:26 GMT

    Just for good measure Tschopp wins the race to the top of the Côte de Cabris and picks up another 10 points as a result. The IAM Cycling rider is clearly intent on extending his lead in the KOM competition. In terms of the race for yellow, Jeannesson is still the virtual race leader but just by 6 six seconds as Sky and Euskaltel lead the peloton.

  18. 77km remaining from 220km

    14:10:49 GMT

    El Fares and Silin have both been dropped by the lead group though, so they're down to 8 riders with just over 75km of racing left.

  19. 14:13:43 GMT

    The leader are about to take on the Col du Ferrier. It's a slightly trickier prospect than the last climb, with an average gradient of 6.8 per cent. The break has just 1:15 on the peloton though.

  20. 14:15:06 GMT

    This is a surprise but Rein Taaramae of Cofidis is at the back of the bunch and struggling to match the pace set by Sky.

  21. 14:17:19 GMT

    The strain is beginning to tell at the front of the race with Bookwalter, and Pineau dropping out of the break. That makes just six riders left at the front of the race. They should make it back to the leaders on the long descent off the climb though.

  22. 14:19:42 GMT

    • Pro Team Astana's 2012 Jersey

    And Borut Bozic has popped too. So that's five men in the lead break.

  23. 14:20:49 GMT

    Tschopp leads the remaining riders towards the top of the climb. Can he secure another 10 points at the summit?

  24. 70km remaining from 220km

    14:24:48 GMT

    After 150 km of racing the break has just 1:00 on the peloton. No serious attacks from the bunch yet, but with such a long run into the finish that's hardly surprising.

  25. 14:26:03 GMT

    • Red Polka Dot Jersey

    As expected Tschopp is first to the top of the climb and grabs another 10 points in the KOM competition. Frankly he had the jersey wrapped up as soon as he made it into today's break.

  26. 14:27:05 GMT

    It's mostly down hill from here for the race as the peloton enters the final 70km of racing.

  27. 61km remaining from 220km

    14:37:17 GMT

    The leaders are currently flying down the descent but the peloton is still pegging the back consistently with the last time check at 40 seconds.

  28. 14:46:04 GMT

    Gorka Ferdugo has crashed on the wet descent as Sky and Euskaltel continue to set the pace. The break only has 17 seconds.

  29. 48km remaining from 220km

    14:49:57 GMT

    Just 10 seconds for the remnants of the break.

  30. 14:56:26 GMT

    Simon Clarke is the lone rider clear of the peloton. The rest of the break has sat up with the bunch still 10 seconds back.

  31. 14:56:52 GMT

    With the Jeannesson about to be caught Clarke might be given a bit of room here.

  32. 14:57:46 GMT

    Jeannesson responds though and brings Clarke back.

  33. 14:58:10 GMT

    As BMC give Sky some assistance and set the pace on the front of the peloton.

  34. 15:00:36 GMT

    The peloton has given Jeannesson, Clarke, Vorganov and Bardet 20 seconds with 39km to go as Voeckler puts in an attack from the bunch. The Frenchman is quickly brought back.

  35. 15:02:53 GMT

    Jeannesson continues to set the pace but the bunch aren't giving the break any favours.

  36. 15:08:06 GMT

    Grivko has attacked. That's a huge attack from the Astana rider.

  37. 15:09:37 GMT

    He's linked up with Velits and Chavanel, and the trio use the sprint to launch a move. They've pulled out a short gap on the bunch, the earlier move has been reeled in.

  38. 15:10:09 GMT

    Chavanel picks up 3 important seconds in GC by winning the sprint and now Sky has to come to the front and try and shut this down.

  39. 32km remaining from 220km

    15:12:13 GMT

    32km to go and Sky are clearly worried about the Chavanel, Velits, Grivko move. The British team has strung out the bunch with Porte sitting in third wheel.

  40. 15:12:47 GMT

    Velits has been brought back and now Chavanel and Grivko are also forced to sit up. One Sky rider pulled them back.

  41. 15:13:10 GMT

    Chavanel moves up to 5th in GC.

  42. 15:14:55 GMT

    Roche meanwhile has a puncture and is forced to swap and pick up a wheel from a teammate.

  43. 25km remaining from 220km

    15:20:35 GMT

    Sky continue their pace setting. Over in Italy Chris Froome has moved into the driving seat at Tirreno-Adriatco, winning the 4th stage.

  44. 15:23:20 GMT

    Vasil Kiryienka has done the majority of the chase work for Sky and now he's setting the pace for Porte. The bunch is strung out.

  45. 15:30:04 GMT

    Talansky is simply following Porte at the moment. No signs of which sprinters have made the lead group. If Gallopin is here, he has a good shout.

  46. 14km remaining from 220km

    15:32:02 GMT

    Albasini is in the group too. Voeckler is right at the front as well, and you can expect a last ditch attack from the Europcar leader.

  47. 15:35:14 GMT

    Gilbert is in the lead group as well. He's got Oss with him too.

  48. 8km remaining from 220km

    15:38:36 GMT

    8km to go. The field contains around 50 riders but with most of the pure sprinters dropped it's wide open for the stage win.

  49. 15:41:30 GMT

    AG2R are forming close to the front but Kiryienka is still setting the pace.

  50. 15:43:23 GMT

    IAM Cycling are bringing Haussler to the front. The Australian is a one of the fastest men left in the bunch and this is a great chance for him to pick up his first win of the season.

  51. 15:44:09 GMT

    Kiryienka is a one man team, he's still on the front with 2km to go.

  52. 15:44:29 GMT

    Westra is up there too. He'll give it a go in the sprint that's for sure.

  53. 15:45:35 GMT

    Dumoulin is in the lead group, hence AG2R workrate.

  54. 15:46:03 GMT

    AG2R come to the front.

  55. 15:46:23 GMT

    Dumoulin is third wheel, Gilbert and Haussler are there.

  56. 15:46:41 GMT

    BMC take over as Albasini comes through.

  57. 15:47:09 GMT

    Oss, Gilbert, then Dumoulin with 500 to go.

  58. 15:48:04 GMT

    Gilbert leads up, Albasini is on the far side and now Dumoulin comes through from behind Gilbert it's going to be between the two of them as Albasini fades but here comes Chavanel.


  59. 15:48:15 GMT

    Chavanel takes the stage.

  60. 15:49:12 GMT

    The Omega rider might not be the fastest rider but he timed his sprint perfectly, Gilbert was forced to go too soon and Dumoulin was squeezed out of it. A fine win by Chavanel.

  61. 15:49:34 GMT

    Rojas was actually third with Dumoulin in fourth.

  62. 15:51:09 GMT

    Chavanel moves into third in GC, 41 seconds behind Porte. That could make tomorrow's time trial even more entertaining.

  63. 15:52:07 GMT

    I wonder what odds you'll get on Chavanel winning Milan-Sanremo now.

  64. 15:57:00 GMT

    1 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 5:14:23
    2 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team
    3 Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
    4 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
    5 Tony Gallopin (Fra) RadioShack Leopard
    6 Julien Simon (Fra) Sojasun
    7 Borut Bozic (Slo) Astana Pro Team
    8 Heinrich Haussler (Aus) IAM Cycling
    9 Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Sojasun
    10 Alberto Losada Alguacil (Spa) Katusha

  65. 15:57:12 GMT

    1 Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 29:40:31
    2 Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Sharp 0:00:32
    3 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 0:00:42
    4 Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
    5 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:49
    6 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:00:52
    7 Peter Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quick Step 0:00:53
    8 Simon Spilak (Slo) Katusha
    9 Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre-Merida 0:00:54
    10 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team 0:01:08

  66. 15:57:42 GMT

    Thanks for joining us today. Tune in tomorrow for more action from Tirreno-Adriatico and Paris-Nice.

Back to top