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McEwen considers Freire a threat

Robbie McEwen (Davitamon-Lotto)

Robbie McEwen (Davitamon-Lotto) (Image credit: Sirotti)

By Brecht Decaluwé in Caen

Robbie McEwen finished fifth in the bunch sprint in stage 5, but with already two wins under his belt, he wasn't too unhappy.

"It wasn't such a good sprint; it doesn't work out everyday as you like," he said. "You win some, you lose some. You don't win every day in the Tour de France. I've already got two wins, I'll keep trying as I have been. Today didn't work out as planned but there's a few more chances to come."

The Australian sprinter described what went wrong today: "We tried the same tactic as yesterday but my lead-out Steegmans mistook the sign for 500 with the one of 200 metres to go. He went with everything just a bit too early today.

"That left me in the front with 300 metres to go into a headwind. I didn't want to lead out the sprint for the others, then die and end as tenth. I waited and tried to get back in the wheels and go again."

That resulted in a place that was just enough to stay in the green jersey by one point from Tom Boonen. And Oscar Freire is only seven points away from McEwen. "You've got to consider everybody. He's [Freire] scored points pretty much every day and he's capable of scoring points in some really hard stages," said McEwen about Freire.

"There's one stage in particular in the mountains where he'll probably survive in the bunch, or what's left of it, and he can take lots of points. You certainly have to consider him, as the guy isn't triple world champion for nothing."

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