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Super-Besse stage may prove the end of Hushovd's time in yellow

Race leader Thor Hushovd (Garmin-Cervelo) enjoys another day in yellow.

Race leader Thor Hushovd (Garmin-Cervelo) enjoys another day in yellow. (Image credit: Sirotti)

Thor Hushovd (Garmin-Cervelo) accepts that holding onto the yellow jersey will be a tough order during the Tour de France's stage 8 to Super-Besse. The Norwegian currently holds a one-second lead over Cadel Evans (BMC).

"I'm better in the mountains yes that's true, but I don't think I can get to the finish on Saturday at Super Besse with the yellow jersey," he said in his post-stage press conference after stage 6.

"Super Besse is a very difficult climb and there is a lot of climbing before the final ascent. I remember there is some climbing at eight percent in the final climb - that is really too difficult for me."

Super Besse last appeared in the Tour de France in 2008. That day, Ricardo Ricco won the stage with Hushovd, then at Credit Agricole, finishing more than 17 minutes down. Although this year's path to the climb is less strenuous than the one ridden in 2008, Hushovd will struggle on the nine percent pitches.

Despite what will probably be an inevitable shift in the leader's jersey, Hushovd has been pleased with his Tour so far.

"I came to this stage thinking it was one that I could win - the final suited me, but I was a little bit tired and was missing the little bit I needed to win," he said.

He also praised his teammates, who despite having long term goals of placing a rider in the top 10, have worked at keeping yellow since he assumed the lead.

"So far in this race, I've had all the support I needed since the first stage from the team. The guys have been working really hard for me to stay in yellow and keep me near the front. They've done an incredible job for me. At Cervelo Test Team, they also supported me 100 percent where I thought I could win or the team trusted me."

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Daniel Benson
Daniel Benson

Daniel Benson was the Editor in Chief at Cyclingnews.com between 2008 and 2022. Based in the UK, he joined the Cyclingnews team in 2008 as the site's first UK-based Managing Editor. In that time, he reported on over a dozen editions of the Tour de France, several World Championships, the Tour Down Under, Spring Classics, and the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the help of the excellent editorial team, he ran the coverage on Cyclingnews and has interviewed leading figures in the sport including UCI Presidents and Tour de France winners.