Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Le Tour de France 2012 – Stage 9: Arc-et-Senans – Besançon (ITT), 41.5km.


HomeRaceRace ReviewsLe Tour de France 2012 - Stage 9: Arc-et-Senans - Besançon (ITT),...

I guess I have to face up to it: it’s a black and blue – and yellow, world.

I best get the hang of this ‘box ticking’ thing, then.

  • Dominate traditional preparation races for the Tour de France, thereby demoralising the opposition and creating an air of invulnerability: check.
  • Produce a cracking ride in the prologue to leave the opposition in no doubt as to your form and put you within spitting distance of the maillot jaune: check.
  • Avoid the crashes in the sprinter stages and allow some of the team to help your star sprinter so as he doesn’t lapse into depression: check.
  • Stay out of hospital in the even nastier than the sprinter stages, transition stages: check.
  • Ride a scintillating first time trial to increase the daylight between you and any challengers – and keep any team mates with big ideas in their box: check.

Well, all the boxes are ticked, so far – but what’s left?

  • Demonstrate the same climbing skills on the long Alpine and Pyrenean passes that you did on those short, steep climbs which aren’t meant to suit you, but which you were right up there in.
  • Do not have a ‘jour sans’ – or if you do then don’t let any of those damn foreigners be aware it.
  • Do not fall off – but if you do, land on something soft.

Joking apart, there’s an air of inevitability creeping into this Tour; Wiggins display against the watch today was masterful.

There are still two weeks to go but already he’s looking like the winner to me.

Le Tour de France 2012 - Stage 9
Wiggins was masterful today.

To use a Sean Kelly word, the others are going to have to majorly put time into him in the mountains – which just doesn’t seem likely – and the odds are that he’ll blast everyone in the final 53 K chrono, too.

But as we said yesterday, it’s by no means unprecedented for the yellow jersey to have to abandon – I mentioned in my lifetime, Ocana (71), Hinault (80), Simon (83) and Sorensen (91) but overlooked Stephane Heulot (96) and our own Chris Boardman (98).

And if you want to include riders who had to quit for ‘other’ reasons, there’s Michel Pollentier (78) and Michael Rasmussen (07) – but best not mention them, I don’t want an earful from Brad.

I invited myself to Vik’s to watch the stage; I was going to miss a chunk of it if I had to drive back to Portobello – I did smooth the invasion with coffee gateau, though.

We both couldn’t fail to be impressed by first Froome and then Bradley – both men had Cancellara well beaten, with Wiggins’ margin almost one minute.

Froome’s skinny frame makes him an unlikely ‘chrono man’ and he’s hardly poetry in motion but he’s excellent in Grand Tour time trials – first showing us this talent in last year’s Vuelta.

Le Tour de France 2012 - Stage 9
We were intrigued by his skinsuit – that calls for a good ‘skek’ by Martin and I come the Stage 19 TT at Bonneval.

Looking at the others, it wasn’t that Evans was on a bad day, today – just that Wiggins was having a spectacular one.

The Londoner was smooth, focussed, rarely out of the crouch, keeping the cadence high – poetry in motion.

And respect to Paul Sherwen for reminding us that Bradley’s father, Gary was an excellent track rider – let’s hope he’s resting in peace.

Tejay van Garderen (‘van’ with a small ‘v’ please, or Sean the BMC press guy will be on your case) produced an excellent ride which bodes well for the future.

‘Chava’ continues to shine against the watch and both Nibali and Menchov produced solid rides, albeit dropping two minutes to the rampant Wiggins.

Peter Velits’ ride was another from the top drawer; he’s benefited from the ‘QuickStep effect’ this year – Boonen’s early season gave them all so much to live up to.

It wasn’t a good day for the ‘usual suspects’ among the specialists, Tony Martin punctured – again – and at this level, it’s over the minute the rim hits the tar.

Lieuwe Westra was 17th at 2:45 and Gustav Larsson 21st at 2:55 – poor rides by both men’s usual high standards.

Tomorrow is the rest day, so no need for predictions.

And VeloVeritas heads off to join proceedings tomorrow – God willing our next words will come from La Belle France.

Sunshine, wee bars with cold Pelforth and big televisions, scrambled eggs and coffee in the Tour Village for breakfast, L’Équipe the same day as it’s published… all that – and a bike race, too.

A demain.

Result - Le Tour de France 2012 - Stage 9

Stage Result

1 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:51:24
2 Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:00:35
3 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) RadioShack-Nissan 0:00:57
4 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:01:06
5 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:01:24
6 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:01:43
7 Peter Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:01:59
8 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:02:07
9 Denis Menchov (Rus) Katusha Team 0:02:08
10 Andreas Klöden (Ger) RadioShack-Nissan 0:02:09
11 Maxime Monfort (Bel) RadioShack-Nissan 0:02:15
12 Tony Martin (Ger) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:02:16
13 Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (Spa) RadioShack-Nissan 0:02:20
14 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Movistar Team 0:02:22
15 Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro Team 0:02:26
16 Jens Voigt (Ger) RadioShack-Nissan 0:02:44
17 Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:02:45
18 Tony Gallopin (Fra) RadioShack-Nissan 0:02:46
19 Jérémy Roy (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:02:52
20 Jerome Coppel (Fra) Saur – Sojasun 0:02:54
21 Gustav Larsson (Swe) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:02:55
22 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team 0:02:58
23 Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale 0:03:08
24 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
25 Sandy Casar (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:03:09
26 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team
27 Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky Procycling 0:03:20
28 Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 0:03:29
29 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:03:39
30 Alexandr Vinokourov (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 0:03:47
31 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team
32 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:03:48
33 Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:03:57
34 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team 0:04:01
35 Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:04:06
36 David Millar (GBr) Garmin – Sharp 0:04:14
37 Gorka Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel – Euskadi 0:04:20
38 Dominik Nerz (Ger) Liquigas-Cannondale
39 Stephen Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing Team 0:04:23
40 Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Katusha Team 0:04:25
41 Chris Anker Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 0:04:26
42 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:04:30
43 Luca Paolini (Ita) Katusha Team 0:04:31
44 Frank Schleck (Lux) RadioShack-Nissan 0:04:32
45 Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:04:34
46 Patrick Gretsch (Ger) Argos – Shimano 0:04:35
47 Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:04:38
48 Fredrik Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro Team 0:04:42
49 Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team 0:04:44
50 Vasili Kiryienka (Blr) Movistar Team
51 Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin – Sharp 0:04:46
52 Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:04:47
53 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre – ISD 0:04:50
54 David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin – Sharp
55 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Belisol Team 0:04:51
56 Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:04:54
57 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:05:04
58 Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 0:05:05
59 Thibaut Pinot (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:05:12
60 Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel – Euskadi 0:05:13
61 Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:05:15
62 Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar 0:05:16
63 George Hincapie (USA) BMC Racing Team
64 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Katusha Team
65 Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:05:21
66 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Team Europcar 0:05:22
67 Christopher Horner (USA) RadioShack-Nissan 0:05:24
68 Michael Morkov (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 0:05:30
69 Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Movistar Team 0:05:31
70 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team
71 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team 0:05:33
72 Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre – ISD 0:05:34
73 Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team Europcar
74 Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 0:05:37
75 Kristijan Koren (Slo) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:05:40
76 Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Movistar Team 0:05:45
77 Davide Malacarne (Ita) Team Europcar
78 Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Saur – Sojasun 0:05:46
79 Bert Grabsch (Ger) Omega Pharma-QuickStep
80 Michael Albasini (Swi) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team
81 Jorge Azanza Soto (Spa) Euskaltel – Euskadi 0:05:48
82 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack-Nissan 0:05:49
83 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat
84 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:05:50
85 Andrey Kashechkin (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 0:05:54
86 Christian Knees (Ger) Sky Procycling 0:06:04
87 Stuart O’Grady (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 0:06:08
88 Brice Feillu (Fra) Saur – Sojasun 0:06:09
89 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin – Sharp 0:06:20
90 Martin Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:06:22
91 Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:06:27
92 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling 0:06:29
93 Pieter Weening (Ned) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team
94 Julien Simon (Fra) Saur – Sojasun 0:06:31
95 Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 0:06:33
96 Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:06:34
97 Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:06:36
98 Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 0:06:39
99 David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
100 Rob Ruijgh (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:06:41
101 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Astana Pro Team 0:06:42
102 Albert Timmer (Ned) Argos – Shimano
103 Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Saur – Sojasun 0:06:43
104 Kevin De Weert (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:06:46
105 Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Cannondale
106 Ruben Plaza Molina (Spa) Movistar Team 0:06:48
107 Dries Devenyns (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickStep 0:06:52
108 Yury Trofimov (Rus) Katusha Team 0:06:54
109 Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat
110 Bram Tankink (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:06:55
111 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre – ISD 0:06:56
112 Yuriy Krivtsov (Fra) Lampre – ISD 0:06:59
113 Yann Huguet (Fra) Argos – Shimano 0:07:00
114 Rémy Di Gregorio (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
115 Yohann Gene (Fra) Team Europcar 0:07:02
116 Sylvester Szmyd (Pol) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:07:05
117 Federico Canuti (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:07:06
118 Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
119 Julien Fouchard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 0:07:07
120 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team
121 Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 0:07:10
122 Simone Stortoni (Ita) Lampre – ISD
123 Aliaksandr Kuchynski (Blr) Katusha Team 0:07:12
124 Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 0:07:14
125 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar
126 Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank
127 Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel – Euskadi
128 Amaël Moina