What's Cool In Road Cycling

Vuelta ’05 Stage 7: Triumph For Max!

Today’s stage from Teruel to Vinarуs has all the climbs in the first 80 kilometers of the 212.5 kilometers, then fairly flat or downhill to the finish, Teruel is at an altitude of 1,000 meters and the finish is at 10, so if Petacchi can get over the early climbs it could be another for him.

After yesterday, Liberty will want to keep things together, so when a break with Jimenez (Comunidad Valenciana), Cuesta (Saunier Duval), Martinez (Euskadi), Verbrugghe (Quick Step), Gutierrez (Phonak) and Poilvet (Credit Agricole) gets away they are happy to let it dangle 3 and a half minutes in front. With 75 kilometers to the finish the gap was down under 2 minutes and it was only a matter of time till they were reeled in. Fassa Bortolo were starting to do more of the work for Petacchi as Iсigo Cuesta in the front group took all the points on the climbs.

Bettini had a go at with 10k to go, but came up short.

As the main bunch lifted their speed things were not looking good for the breakaway, Illes Balears were also putting their weight behind the chase along with Phonak, Liberty and Fassa. Up front Gutierrez couldn’t hang on, and the others were pulled with 20 kilometers to go. Paolo Bettini (Quick Step) jumped away with 10 kilometers left but doesn’t stay away for long and it’s all down to the last 5 kilometers. Van Heeswijk was lead out by Van Bon and no one could get past him as Zabel, Zanotti and Steels tried, a nice finish by the Discovery rider, Petacchi was nowhere. Overall, no change.

Tomorrow is 189 kilometers of flat, flat and flat, well suited for Petacchi.

Stage 7 Result:
1st M.Van Heeswijk (DSC) in 5:21.21.
2nd E.Zabel (TMO) all at same.
3rd A.Ongarato (FAS)
4th M.Zanotti (LIQ)
5th T.Steels (DAV)
6th T.Hushovd (CA)
7th J.I.Gutierrez (ILL)
8th A.Geslin (BOU)
9th S.Sanchez (EUS)
10th M.Elmiger (PHO)

Overall After Stage 7:
1st R.Heras (LIB) in 29:03:28.
2nd D.Menchov (RAB) at 12 secs.
3rd C.Sastre (CSC) at 1:07.
4th J.Rodriguez (SAU) at 1:09.
5th D.Blanco (CV) at 1:11.
6th F.Mancebo (ILL) at 1:26.
7th C.G.Quesada (CV) at 1:39.
8th J.M.Mercado (QUI) at same time.
9th U.Yus (BOU) at same time.
10th M.Scarponi (LIB) at 1:58.

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