By Brecht Decaluwé and John Trevorrow in Albi
Astana general manager, Marc Biver
Happy after strong performances from his three GC contenders, Biver talked about the time trials of Rasmussen and 'Klödi': "He [Rasmussen] worked a lot in the winter. For us, it was all about trying to recover as much time as possible. Klöden and 'Vino' had about the same time at the first intermediate point but Andreas' crash changed things. It was strange he crashed there because we knew many riders had crashed there. So before the corner, we warned Andreas but he went down anyway." Biver was light-hearted about the incident afterward. "I think we must be happy."
Andrey Kashechkin (Astana)
Kashechkin crashed during his time trial, but still managed to deliver an exceptionally strong fourth place time at the finish line in Albi. The Kazakh lieutenant of Alexandre Vinokourov put his crash into perspective when he talked with the French national radio: "That's life, I just tried to go as fast as I could, and then such things can happen. I'm happy with my performance and I'm motivated [for the second part of the Tour]," Kashechkin said. Suggesting there are more strong performances from Astana to come and warning that bad luck could ruin the chances of any GC contender, Kashechkin said, "Everyday something can happen so we shouldn't be ahead of events."
Cadel Evans (Predictor Lotto)
Laughing in response to a question about whether Michael Rasmussen had told a fib when he had said he hadn't been working on his time trialing. "Ah, I don't know about that."
Simon Gerrans (AG2r Prévoyance)
"I had three goals going into today's time trial. They were, in no particular order, make the time limit, stay upright, and [do] not Drown!! Happy to report all goals were achieved."
Chris Horner (Predictor Lotto) to reporters
Regarding today, Horner said, "The descent was very slippery today, and slowed us by at least one minute from the guys who got to ride it in the dry," but looking ahead, he said positively, "My legs are feeling strong for tomorrow and the Pyrenees."
Commentator Paul Sherwen
Commenting on Cadel Evan's ride today, Sherwen said, "[It was] phenomenal. That was an incredible ride. When you think about it, he knew what he had to do and we just had to think about whether he would get the yellow jersey. Actually, I suppose the ride of the day was really Rasmussen. We all expected him to lose three or four minutes today and then Cadel would have had the yellow jersey."
Commentator Phil Liggett
Cyclingnews reporter and Australian race promoter, John Trevorrow, once said to Phil Liggett while riding together in a car during the Tour of Tasmania going up the 16km Mt Wellington climb, "This boy could one day win the Tour de France". Evans was only 19 at the time.
"Yes I remember that," said Liggett, "and yes he can. This is the day that shows he can do it. He did the best ride and I believe now he can win the Tour. He knows now that he's up against Vino and he can keep Vino close in the time trial. He just needs to make sure he doesn't lose anytime in the Pyrenees."
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