Daring double act proves Schleck's class

A new first three on GC as Fränk gets a ‘gift' from Contador

It was the second-to-last chance for the pure climbers to make their bid for overall victory. And being as such, everybody knew the prodigious Schleck brothers of Saxo Bank would attack on Wednesday's five-climb, 169.5-kilometre stage to Le Grand-Bornand.

"Bjarne Riis came up with a plan this morning. Fränk had no personal goals and he was there to help me," said Andy Schleck.

"We knew what we wanted with this stage, which was planned before the Tour even began," said Riis. "The plan was quite clear and simple: we were willing to put everything on the line and to explode the peloton."

Almost all who knew this also predicted they would force a move on the penultimate climb of the 8.8-kilometre-long Col de Romme. Together with the closely-linked 7.5-km Col de la Colombière, its summit just 15 fast kilometres from the finish, they created a virtual hors-catégorie climb of its own.

But apart from the maillot jaune of Alberto Contador, who was simply unflappable all day, there was not a thing their rivals could do.

And while its profile closely resembled the seventeenth stage of the 2004 Tour de France that also finished in Le Grand-Bornand, the outcome was completely different.

In 2004, Lance Armstrong - then riding for the US Postal team - won a stage he didn't need to en route to overall victory. Afterwards, he said after 'giving' away chances in the past with those favours rarely coming back to help him, the Texan decided it was now a case of "no more gifts". At the time, five-time Tour champion Bernard Hinault commended Armstrong, telling him it was the "perfect" thing to do.

But Wednesday in the same French alpine village nestled at the foot of the Aravis mountain range, Contador didn't even try to break free of the Schlecks. Despite possessing a sprint-finish not worth writing a word about, that's exactly what the maillot jaune waited for, his faux-lunge twenty metres from the line making it fairly obvious a gentleman's agreement had taken place for the elder Schleck to claim the stage - which Fränk took with open arms.

"It was very special and I want to give special thanks to Andy. I will help him get on the podium in Paris," Fränk Schleck said, who finished on the same time as second-placed Contador and his brother Andy, the stage run at a 34.604 km/h average.

Contador's 'gift' the best thing for him

What's also obvious is that Contador and Armstrong, teammates they may be, are completely different persons. And it just may be - even though he's not saying so - that Contador is supremely confident about taking his second Tour de France, now just four days from Paris. So confident that so long as he wins the major prize, he doesn't need to win - or care about winning - stages, and being non-confrontational, the Spaniard doesn't wish to engage in any potential conflict with Saxo Bank.

"Both the Schleck brothers were very strong, Andy as much as Fränk," said Contador. "I'd spoken about attacking them on the Colombière with Johan Bruyneel - the goal was to gain minutes. I'd also spoken with Andréas Klöden on the climb, and he told me to go for it.

"I thought I could go alone but the brothers managed to come back, so from there on, I decided to stay on their wheels. The Schlecks asked me to collaborate; I said no, because I had teammates behind. I knew the Schleck brothers would attack all the way to the finish, so I focused on staying with them and staying fresh for the time trial."

Astana DS Johan Bruyneel had a different recollection of events: "The attack from Contador, three k' from the top [of the Colombière], that was not really... I had advised not to go. He did not need to go, he did not need to attack."

Regardless, by consequence of the Schleck spectacular in the mountains, previous second and third on the classement générale - Armstrong (Astana) and Bradley Wiggins (Garmin-Slipstream) - were bumped to fourth and sixth and replaced by Andy and Fränk Schleck, 2:26 and 3:25 behind Contador, respectively. And at a minimum, Saxo Bank intends to keep Andy in second.

"It is a bike race: we saw in Paris-Nice that even a big champion like Contador can have a bad day and lose time. It is going to be hard to beat him, he is very strong. But he is human being and we are just waiting for him to make a mistake; if he has a mistake, we will be there," Fränk Schleck said.

Don't rule out Nibali, Armstrong, Klöden & Wiggo

It's not like Armstrong and Wiggins rode poorly, the Anglophone pair part of a chase group of four that formed on the Col de Romme along with Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas) and Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Slipstream). In the end, only Nibali and the American managed to finish together, 2:18 behind the lead trio to take fourth and fifth, with a third Astana-ite, Andréas Klöden, nine seconds in arrears. Garmin's GC pairing of Wiggins and Vande Velde would finish 3:07 and 4:09 behind Contador in seventh and ninth, respectively.

Asked if he was happy with his day, Armstrong responded: "Yes and no. I tried to be conservative on the Col de Romme. I did not go with those initial attacks, and then I got kind of stuck behind. Once you are 30 seconds back there is nothing you can do; you got to just sit on.

"I was a little concerned with Bradley Wiggins and the TT, so in the last kilometre over Colombière I decided to jump away," he said, the American all-star 30 seconds behind Fränk Schleck in fourth place on the overall standings. His teammate Klöden is fifth, a further 49 seconds behind the seven-time Tour champion.

Thursday's 40.5-kilometre time trial around Lake Annecy may switch things around a little at the top. However, it's a course that favours riders strong at the end of a three-week race rather than specialists against the clock, and the gaps shouldn't be too significant at the top of the leader board. Far more noteworthy will be Saturday's penultimate leg to Mont Ventoux, the Giant of Provence.

"On Ventoux, people will be more tired. The advantage is that we recover well and if the climb is steeper, it is better for us. We saw that today and Ventoux we will be up there," Andy Schleck said.

"I think Lance and Andréas can catch up with the Schleck brothers [on the overall standings]," said Contador.

"It would be nice to get on the podium," said Armstrong. "I will go as hard as I can [in the Annecy time trial] and go up Ventoux as fast as I can."

Remember Stage 17 of the 2004 and '06 Tours? This ain't so different.

Arguably the hardest stage of the race simply because of the number of high-rating climbs within the relatively short space of 169.5 kilometres, the seventeenth stage began just before half-past midday from the previous day's finish in Bourg-Saint-Maurice. Situated in the foothills of the legendary Cols de l'Iseran, du Peit-Saint-Bernard and du Cormet de Roseland, the mountainous surroundings gave good indication of what lay ahead, the parcours not dissimilar to Stage 17 of the 2004 and 2006 Tours de France, where in the latter, a rampaging Floyd Landis turned Le Tour inside out and upside down - quite literally.

Straight away on the Cormet de Roselend, it was a jumpy peloton, a group of 10 gaining clearance two-thirds of the way on the 18.1-km climb and containing a few expected - and unexpected - suspects; perhaps the strangest being Denis Menchov (Rabobank), who appears to be persona non grata at Le Tour.

Between the lead 10 and the peloton were a trio of chasers, although they didn't quite manage to bridge before the climb topped out at 1,968 metres, polka-dotted Pellizotti once again first over the top. Down to Beaufort (km. 38) a few more came across to the front group, numbering a sizeable 22 before one of those escapees, points leader Thor Hushovd (Cérvelo TestTeam), went on a solo expedition in a search for the two intermediate sprints on offer; the first still some way off at Paz-sur-Arly (km 75.5). The other 21 names were: Menchov, Sandy Casar (Française des Jeux), Franco Pellizotti (Liquigas), Dave Zabriskie (Garmin-Slipstream), Jurgen Van den Broeck (Silence-Lotto), Ruben Perez, Egoi Martinez, Amets Txurruka, Gorka Verdugo (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Rigoberto Uran (Caisse d'Epargne), Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step), Remi Pauriol and Christophe Kern (Cofidis), Geoffroy Lequatre (Agritubel), Maxime Monfort (Columbia-HTC), Marzio Bruseghin (Lampre NGC), Pierre Rolland, Thomas Voeckler (BBox Bouygues Telecom), Jose Luis Arrieta (AG2R La Mondiale), George Hincapie (Columbia-HTC), and Linus Gerdemann (Milram).

All roads lead to Romme

At the base of the 8.8-km Col de Romme, that together with the closely-linked 7.5-km Col de la Colombière creates a hors-catégorie climb of its own, Carlos Sastre (Cérvelo TestTeam) was first to go with Sylvain Calzati (Agritubel).

That break was short-lived, however, becoming the precursor to a far more dangerous move when Andy Schleck fired off for the second day running, his second big dig five kilometres from the Romme's 1,297-metre summit shedding all bar Contador and Klöden, his brother Fränk later rejoining the lead group. Behind was an equally select quartet containing Armstrong, Wiggins, Vande Velde and Nibali who trailed by 1:11 at the crest, 29 kilometres from Le Grand-Bornand.

The two quartets hit the base of the Colombière 1:20 apart, Fränk Schleck pacing the Contador group and Vande Velde the Armstrong bunch, with a chase group of 13 3:28 in arrears. Apart from Vande Velde being dropped, nothing much happened till 16.7 kilometres from the finish when Contador took a flyer and dropped his companions. Though a short while later, he sat up and allowed the brothers Schleck to join him but not Klöden, who went over the 1,618-metre climb 25 seconds down on the new lead trio, with Fränk in first place.

"When Alberto attacks it is better to take your time at first," said Andy Schleck. "We came back step-by-step to him, but he showed that he had great legs today. We showed strength in front, it was not an easy stage, but we just had to focus on myself, because without being arrogant I think I am the best climber out there."

It was then Armstrong who turned the screws and left behind Wiggins and Nibali, cresting the Colombière 2:06 behind the Schlecks and Contador. The American seemed intent on catching Klöden on the high-speed descent but was in fact caught by demonic descender Nibali, who together, managed to nip at the German's heels just few kilometres from home.

A pat on Fränk Schleck's bum by Contador may be construed as a job well done. But it was not just that: it was a sign he was conceding the stage victory, a half-hearted effort by the maillot jaune granting Fränk his second Tour stage after his 2006 triumph atop L'Alpe d'Huez. Nibali led Armstrong over the line 2:18 later, with Klöden a further nine seconds back. Wiggins, Christophe Moreau (Agritubel), Vande Velde and Rémi Pauriol (Cofidis) would complete Wednesday's first 10 places.

For images of stage 17 click here

Full Results
1Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank4:53:54 
2Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana  
3Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank  
4Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas0:02:18 
5Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana  
6Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana0:02:27 
7Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream0:03:07 
8Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel0:04:09 
9Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
10Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:06:10 
11Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux  
12Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC0:06:12 
13Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas  
14Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale  
15Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha  
16Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
17Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux  
18Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
19Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:06:15 
20José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale0:06:19 
21Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step0:07:01 
22Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:07:47 
23Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence - Lotto  
24Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel  
25Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
26Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream  
27Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha  
28David Arroyo Duran (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:07:50 
29Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha0:08:30 
30David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC0:08:54 
31Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram  
32Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step  
33Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
34Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
35Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:08:58 
36Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha0:11:00 
37Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
38Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:11:20 
39Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:11:50 
40Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank  
41Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale  
42Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank  
43Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
44George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC  
45Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
46Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step  
47Luis Pasamontes Rodriguez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:13:30 
48Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
49Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step0:15:33 
50Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:17:33 
51Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
52Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank  
53Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
54Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux  
55Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana  
56Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram  
57Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Astana  
58David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
59Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas  
60Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana0:21:31 
61Iñigo Cuesta Lopez De Castro (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
62Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank  
63Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank  
64Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:25:38 
65Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha0:29:43 
66Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
67Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
68Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
69Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
70Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank  
71Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française des Jeux  
72Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
73Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC  
74Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel  
75Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
76Juan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
77Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano  
78Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team  
79Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team  
80Volodymir Gustov (Ukr) Cervelo Test Team  
81Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto  
82Brett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team  
83Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
84José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
85Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank  
86Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha  
87Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
88Gustav Erik Larsson (Swe) Team Saxo Bank  
89Charles Wegelius (GBr) Silence - Lotto  
90Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel  
91Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram  
92Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
93Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram  
94Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
95Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
96Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step  
97Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank  
98Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Team Katusha  
99Grégory Rast (Swi) Astana  
100Bingen Fernandez Bustinza (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
101Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana  
102Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto  
103Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream  
104Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
105David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream  
106Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
107Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin - Slipstream  
108Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
109Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas  
110Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano  
111Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank  
112Danny Pate (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
113Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step0:35:47 
114Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
115Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Columbia - HTC  
116Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC  
117Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas  
118Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram  
119Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
120Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas  
121Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas  
122Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step  
123Sebastian Lang (Ger) Silence - Lotto  
124Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
125Bert Grabsch (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
126Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
127William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
128Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Liquigas  
129Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
130Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cervelo Test Team  
131Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank  
132Brian Vandborg (Den) Liquigas  
133Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC  
134Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
135Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC  
136David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
137Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha  
138Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC  
139Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
140Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux  
141Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
142Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
143Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
144Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux  
145Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
146Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
147Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel  
148Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
149Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
150Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne  
151Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
152Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux  
153Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC  
154Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram  
155Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram  
156Andreas Klier (Ger) Cervelo Test Team0:35:58 
157Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank0:35:59 
158Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram  
DNFKenny Robert van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
DNFCyril Dessel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
DNFJosé Angel Gomez Marchante (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
1Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank20pts
2Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana17 
3Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank15 
4Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas13 
5Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana12 
6Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana10 
7Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream9 
8Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel8 
9Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream7 
10Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne6 
11Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux5 
12Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC4 
13Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas3 
14Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale2 
15Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha1 
Sprint 1 - Praz-Sur-Arly, km. 75.5
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team6pts
2Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step4 
3Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2 
Sprint 2 - Cluses, km. 126.0
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team6pts
2Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne4 
3Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2 
Cormet de Roselend (Cat. 1) km. 18.0
1Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas15pts
2Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux13 
3Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step11 
4José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale9 
5Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne8 
6Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto7 
7David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream6 
8Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank5 
Col des Saisies (Cat. 1) km. 56.0
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team15pts
2Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas13 
3Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne11 
4Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi9 
5Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi8 
6Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank7 
7Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto6 
8Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step5 
Côte d'Araches (Cat. 2) km. 111.5
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team10pts
2Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas9 
3Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi8 
4Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne7 
5Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto6 
6David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream5 
Col de Romme (Cat. 1) km. 140.5
1Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank15pts
2Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank13 
3Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana11 
4Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana9 
5Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas8 
6Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream7 
7Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream6 
8Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana5 
Col de la Colombière (Cat. 1) km. 154.5
1Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank30pts
2Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank26 
3Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana22 
4Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana18 
5Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana16 
6Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas14 
7Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream12 
8Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel10 
Young riders
1Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank4:53:54 
2Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas0:02:18 
3Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas0:06:12 
4Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:08:54 
5Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:08:58 
6Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha0:11:00 
7Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:11:50 
8Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale  
9Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:17:33 
10Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:29:43 
11Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
12Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
13Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC  
14Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel  
15Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team  
16Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha  
17Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram  
18Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram  
19Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto  
20Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
21Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano  
22Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:35:47 
23Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC  
24Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas  
25Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram  
26Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
27Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
28Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
29Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha  
30Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
31Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
32Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
33Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram  
Most aggressive rider
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team  
2Garmin - Slipstream0:10:18 
3Team Saxo Bank0:12:48 
4AG2R La Mondiale0:14:01 
5Team Katusha0:17:44 
7Cofidis Le Credit En Ligne0:20:32 
9Quick Step0:23:00 
10Francaise Des Jeux0:25:10 
11Caisse d'Epargne0:25:33 
12Euskaltel - Euskadi0:25:57 
13Silence - Lotto0:38:57 
14Bbox Bouygues Telecom0:39:15 
16Lampre - N.G.C0:45:42 
17Team Columbia - HTC0:49:04 
18Team Milram0:51:25 
19Cervelo Test Team0:54:16 
General classification after stage 17
1Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana72:27:09 
2Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank0:02:26 
3Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank0:03:25 
4Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana0:03:55 
5Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana0:04:44 
6Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream0:04:53 
7Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas0:05:09 
8Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:08:08 
9Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux0:09:19 
10Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:10:50 
11Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas0:10:52 
12Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale0:11:38 
13Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team0:11:39 
14Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux0:11:52 
15Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha0:12:08 
16Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:15:29 
17Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:17:23 
18Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha0:19:20 
19Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:21:50 
20Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram0:24:15 
21Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:25:07 
22George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC0:25:38 
23Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step0:25:45 
24Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale0:28:38 
25Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram0:28:49 
26Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana0:30:59 
27Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC0:34:06 
28Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:35:58 
29Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel0:36:21 
30Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:36:33 
31Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana0:36:37 
32Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto0:37:06 
33Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:38:06 
34Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:39:08 
35Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Astana0:39:35 
36Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram0:40:37 
37Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC0:40:52 
38Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas0:41:11 
39Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:43:57 
40Luis Pasamontes Rodriguez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:45:47 
41Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha0:47:03 
42Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:47:06 
43Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:48:17 
44Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank0:48:35 
45Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:49:53 
46Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:50:26 
47Volodymir Gustov (Ukr) Cervelo Test Team0:51:06 
48Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank0:52:52 
49Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française des Jeux0:53:07 
50Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC0:54:35 
51Gustav Erik Larsson (Swe) Team Saxo Bank0:56:47 
52Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:58:19 
53Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence - Lotto0:59:10 
54Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step0:59:44 
55Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank1:02:47 
56Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream1:03:46 
57David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC1:05:33 
58David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1:11:15 
59Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom1:13:20 
60Charles Wegelius (GBr) Silence - Lotto1:14:25 
61Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel1:16:36 
62David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream1:17:20 
63Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi1:17:36 
64Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi1:18:18 
65Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi1:20:21 
66Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom1:20:40 
67David Arroyo Duran (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne1:21:16 
68José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale1:23:09 
69Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank1:25:38 
70Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel1:25:52 
71José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne1:27:09 
72Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel1:28:58 
73Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel1:29:02 
74Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1:29:33 
75David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream1:29:57 
76Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1:31:02 
77Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre - NGC1:32:04 
78Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi1:32:20 
79Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram1:33:20 
80Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank1:36:29 
81Iñigo Cuesta Lopez De Castro (Spa) Cervelo Test Team1:36:54 
82Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank1:40:08 
83Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step1:41:32 
84Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Team Katusha1:42:19 
85Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne1:42:37 
86Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1:45:52 
87Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas1:45:56 
88Sebastian Lang (Ger) Silence - Lotto1:49:40 
89Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team1:50:48 
90Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto1:53:17 
91Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank1:53:47 
92Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale1:54:35 
93Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - NGC1:55:25 
94Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step1:56:29 
95Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cervelo Test Team1:57:45 
96Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux1:58:52 
97Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step1:59:07 
98Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha1:59:25 
99Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano1:59:42 
100Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream2:01:24 
101Juan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi2:01:48 
102Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto2:02:53 
103Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha2:06:50 
104Bingen Fernandez Bustinza (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2:07:40 
105Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank2:07:59 
106Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC2:08:08 
107Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas2:13:22 
108Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team2:15:37 
109Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Liquigas2:21:10 
110Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank2:25:32 
111Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step2:25:40 
112Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC2:25:54 
113Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha2:26:17 
114Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram2:26:29 
115Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano2:27:28 
116Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank2:29:18 
117Brian Vandborg (Den) Liquigas2:30:31 
118Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto2:30:58 
119Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne2:31:06 
120Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin - Slipstream2:31:45 
121Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2:32:24 
122Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Silence - Lotto2:34:05 
123Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre - NGC2:34:14 
124Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC2:34:52 
125Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano2:35:08 
126Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano2:36:45 
127Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram2:38:01 
128Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux2:38:11 
129Grégory Rast (Swi) Astana2:40:02 
130Brett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team2:42:10 
131Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi2:42:34 
132Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas2:42:53 
133Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale2:44:07 
134Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2:44:31 
135Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux2:45:23 
136Bert Grabsch (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC2:45:32 
137Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram2:45:46 
138Danny Pate (USA) Garmin - Slipstream2:47:05 
139Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC2:47:19 
140Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2:47:43 
141Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC2:51:25 
142Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana2:53:01 
143Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC2:54:04 
144Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano2:56:05 
145Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2:56:06 
146Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2:56:15 
147Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas2:57:34 
148Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2:57:53 
149William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2:58:46 
150Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano2:59:23 
151Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano3:00:35 
152Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC  
153Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Columbia - HTC3:01:02 
154Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream3:02:00 
155Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram3:02:40 
156Andreas Klier (Ger) Cervelo Test Team3:03:44 
157Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step3:13:14 
158Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux3:26:01 
Points classification
1Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team230pts
2Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC200 
3Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne126 
4Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram122 
5Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream110 
6Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale100 
7Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank97 
8Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas96 
9Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana77 
10Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale74 
11Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana71 
12Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha66 
13Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne64 
14George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC63 
15Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream62 
16Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step61 
17Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank61 
18Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank55 
19William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom54 
20Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC53 
21Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas52 
22Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom51 
23Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom49 
24Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team48 
25Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi48 
26Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux48 
27Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas47 
28Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano47 
29Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC47 
30Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank46 
31Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne46 
32Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step46 
33Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha44 
34Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto43 
35Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux42 
36Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana42 
37Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel41 
38Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi41 
39Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cervelo Test Team38 
40Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne38 
41Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi37 
42Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano37 
43Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram37 
44Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank35 
45Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne35 
46Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano34 
47Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha34 
48Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux33 
49Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale33 
50Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne31 
51Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel31 
52Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne30 
53Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom30 
54Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom30 
55Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC29 
56Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom29 
57Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel28 
58Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas28 
59Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - NGC27 
60Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha27 
61Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC26 
62Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana26 
63Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi26 
64Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano26 
65Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne24 
66Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream24 
67Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram24 
68Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française des Jeux23 
69José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne22 
70Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre - NGC22 
71Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel21 
72Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram21 
73Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale20 
74Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram19 
75Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC18 
76Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano18 
77Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram17 
78Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step17 
79Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto16 
80Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne16 
81Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto16 
82Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream15 
83Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank14 
84Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC14 
85Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas14 
86Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank14 
87Sebastian Lang (Ger) Silence - Lotto13 
88Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto13 
89Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux12 
90Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC11 
91Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step11 
92David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream10 
93Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux10 
94Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team10 
95Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha10 
96Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram10 
97Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom9 
98Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale8 
99Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel8 
100Brett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team7 
101Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank6 
102Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha5 
103Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne5 
104Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi5 
105Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream4 
106Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi4 
107Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel4 
108Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha4 
109Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas4 
110Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank4 
111Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas4 
112Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step3 
113Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto3 
114Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano3 
115Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Columbia - HTC3 
116Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana2 
117David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2 
118David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC2 
119Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank2 
120Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne1 
121Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC1 
122Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC-25 
Mountains classification
1Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas196pts
2Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi118 
3Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom97 
4Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne89 
5Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi86 
6Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana85 
7Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux84 
8Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto76 
9Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank68 
10Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step67 
11Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank65 
12Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel64 
13Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas54 
14Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi49 
15Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale46 
16Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team45 
17David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne38 
18Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana37 
19Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank36 
20Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream35 
21Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale34 
22Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram32 
23Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto31 
24Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom31 
25Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana27 
26Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne26 
27José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne26 
28Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team25 
29Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi24 
30Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne24 
31Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank23 
32Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step23 
33George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC21 
34David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream20 
35Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha18 
36Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha17 
37Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale17 
38Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas17 
39Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne14 
40Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team14 
41Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom14 
42Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Astana14 
43Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank13 
44Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana12 
45Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank12 
46Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi12 
47David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream11 
48Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel11 
49José Angel Gomez Marchante (Spa) Cervelo Test Team10 
50Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne10 
51Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux9 
52José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale9 
53Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano7 
54Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream7 
55Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram7 
56Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC6 
57Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas6 
58Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano6 
59Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux6 
60Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank6 
61Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom5 
62Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto5 
63Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC5 
64Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step5 
65Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi5 
66Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne4 
67Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream4 
68Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank4 
69Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel4 
70Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram4 
71Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano4 
72Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne4 
73Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha3 
74Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel3 
75Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram3 
76Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux3 
77Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha2 
78Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas2 
79Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas1 
80Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1 
81David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC1 
82Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream1 
83Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank1 
Young rider classification
1Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank72:29:35 
2Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas0:02:43 
3Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas0:08:26 
4Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:19:24 
5Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:22:41 
6Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale0:26:12 
7Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:36:42 
8Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram0:38:11 
9Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:47:27 
10Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC0:52:09 
11Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:55:53 
12Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel1:26:32 
13Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram1:30:54 
14Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne1:40:11 
15Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team1:48:22 
16Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto1:50:51 
17Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha1:56:59 
18Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano1:57:16 
19Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC2:05:42 
20Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha2:23:51 
21Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto2:28:32 
22Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC2:32:26 
23Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano2:32:42 
24Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2:42:05 
25Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram2:43:20 
26Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC2:44:53 
27Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2:45:17 
28Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC2:48:59 
29Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano2:53:39 
30Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas2:55:08 
31Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano2:58:09 
32Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream2:59:34 
33Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram3:00:14 
Teams classification
2Garmin - Slipstream0:16:12 
3AG2R La Mondiale0:16:33 
4Team Saxo Bank0:24:31 
5Cofidis Le Credit En Ligne0:37:17 
7Euskaltel - Euskadi0:39:09 
8Francaise Des Jeux0:43:20 
9Team Katusha0:53:54 
11Team Milram1:02:54 
12Bbox Bouygues Telecom1:04:25 
13Caisse d'Epargne1:05:00 
14Cervelo Test Team1:07:57 
15Silence - Lotto1:10:55 
16Team Columbia - HTC1:17:17 
18Quick Step2:03:08 
19Lampre - N.G.C3:07:18 

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Thor continues his hammer-fest

With overnight leader Contador experiencing mechanical problems and others like Cyril Dessel (AG2R) calling it a day, Hushovd at first appeared to be the only man revelling in the lousy conditions, summiting the 15.1-km Col de Saises 1:20 ahead of the group he briefly occupied and 5:09 clear of the peloton. The versatile Norwegian was clearly on a mission - no doubt fuelled by Mark Cavendish's words the previous day, where he told Hushovd, "You've won the green jersey but that's always going to have a stain on it" - and after he took the sprint in Paz-sur-Arly, he gestured to the camera, smirked, and tugged his maillot vert, appearing to say, 'It's mine'.

For the time being, the group behind - now minus Amets Txurruka (Euskaltel-Euskadi), making it a 20-man chase - seemed content to let the God of Thunder continue to banish his mighty hammer. Back in the peloton, Saxo Bank drove at the fore, Stuart O'Grady doing much of the pace-making, with the entire Astana formation right behind, patiently waiting.

Through the Sallanches valley - the only decent piece of flat road the entire stage - and onto the 6.3-km Côte d'Araches, Hushovd did not appear to be weakening. Over the Araches and 58-km from the finish, Astana had now combined with Saxo Bank, 3:09 behind Hushovd, the extra pace causing problems for Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) and Kim Kirchen (Columbia-HTC), the first of the big names to be dropped. And with the retirement of Kenny Van Hummel (Skil-Shimano), Yauheni Hutarovich (Française des Jeux) became the new lanterne rouge.

Thor's extraordinary feat was complete when he made it to the second sprint in Cluses (km. 126); barring disaster, now certain to take his second maillot vert in Paris.

"Today everything just felt perfect. I attacked over the first climb, did a good descent and then had an amazing day in the front," Hushovd said. "I think this is the best day I've ever had on the bike. Maybe I was making a statement, but at least I've got more points in case something happens in the coming days. If I win the jersey by 10 points, I can say that I had built a sufficient buffer on this stage to Le Grand-Bornand."

His job done - and voted the day's most aggressive rider - he was soon overtaken by the chase group, who in turn was swallowed by the peloton. Then the race began for real.

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