Tuesday, July 17, 2012

2012 Tour de France, Stage 15 Results

It took 90 minutes for the escape group to form and, perhaps because of the early exertions, the impetus was gone from the peloton once six men found themselves at the front of the 15th stage yesterday. From the halfway mark, it was obvious that the winner in Pau would be one of the six escapees. Four of the selection had previously enjoyed success at the Tour, with two of the Frenchman in the move - Thomas Voeckler and Pierrick Fedrigo - having claimed three stages each in the past. Once the escape was well clear the six opportunists: Voeckler, Fedrigo, along with Samuel Dumoulin, Christian Vande Velde, Dries Devenyns and Nicki Sorensen worked well together all the way to the final 10.5km. That's when there was a brief bout of attacking action that ultimately put Fedrigo in the lead along with Vande Velde. Unlike the finish in Le Cap d'Agde, however, the Garmin-Sharp escape representative didn't have the muscle to overcome his lead-out man. Fedrigo started the final sprint and stayed in front all the way to the line to take his second victory in Pau and his fourth stage success in the Tour.

The peloton continued to lose time all the way to the finish and, Greipel eventually led the bunch home 11'50” behind Fedrigo.

Wiggins finished near the front of the bunch in 22nd place and he will continue to wear the yellow jersey in stage 16 on Wednesday, after today's rest day.

Note: withdrawals: LANCASTER Brett Daniel, CHAVANEL Sylvain,, HUTAROVICH Yauheni, VAN HUMMEL Kenny Robert, JEROME Vincent, and BERNAUDEAU Giovanni.

Today: rest day in Pau. Tomorrow: Stage 16,Pau -Bagnères-de-Luchon , 197 km. TdF analysis by Jean-François Pescheux: "Pau, a stronghold? Pau, a strategic place? On today's menu, a 197 km classic succession of great Pyrenean cols: the Aubisque, Tourmalet, Col d'Aspin and Peyresourde. As Christian Prudhomme said, a mere four days from the finish, this stage will turn the thumbscrews on the peloton! Moreover, such a course is exactly my idea of a true mountain stage: not with a summit finish, which tends to lock up the race a bit, but an up-and-down course which calls for a mastery of all aspects of cycling."

A day of rest today will serve the riders well tomorrow but nothing can really prepare someone for the prospect of what it's like to race a stage of the Tour de France with four huge mountain passes. The race from Pau to Luchon-de-Bagnères ends in a valley town and it's one that all riders would be afraid of. Those who are tired will suffer enormously on the challenging 197km route that takes in four mythical mountain passes – the Aubisque, Tourmalet, Aspin and Peyresourde; those who are challenging Bradley Wiggins for the yellow jersey will be worried that he's shown no sign yet of cracking; and the race leader himself we will concerned about what is bound to be a volley of attacks up and down the climbs that have helped create the legend of the Tour since they made their debut on the itinerary 102 years ago.

It might not be a summit finish but this is arguably the Queen Stage of the 99th Tour de France when there's a lot at risk but also big prizes to be won.

With five stages remaining (two mountain, one rolling, one TT and then Champs-Elysees) in the Tour, Liquigas-Cannondale captain Vincenzo Nibali wants to capitalize on getting the best possible result. "It’s been a great Tour up to now but I’m not going to settle for that. I’m in third place and that’s definitely a major achievement but if I get the chance to improve on that I will. There are still enough miles to make my mark, attack and invent something. The next two stages will be decisive in this sense. I don’t know them very well but Basso has been an excellent leader. Tomorrow’s downhill finish is intriguing but the descent doesn’t appear to be too technical so I don’t know how much difference it will make. Thursday’s stage seems better suited to attacks. Sky and its key men Wiggins and Froome have shown day after day that they own the race, but you can’t predict what sort of situations will happen. Alliances might be created that are difficult to control. I still expect Van den Broeck to come out fighting, as will Evans and other riders. Together we can try to undermine their formidable hold on the race. And then we’ll have to see who plays which role in Team Sky. Wiggins offers more guarantees and has the time trial on his side. However he prefers a consistent pace and could suffer with changes in rhythm on the climbs: Froome is a stronger climber so what will he do if we drop Wiggins?"

Nibali continued, "My ambitions today are exactly the same as they were at the start. However I am realistic and even though I’ll try I need a monumental feat to win the yellow jersey. I’ll be looking at who’s in front of me and behind me over the next couple of days. My advantage over Evans isn’t that reassuring, and I think it will come down to how much is left in the tank rather than ability in the time trial. I’m calm, I feel good and I’m motivated to do well: all the conditions are right to wrap up this Tour with a great result."

Meanwhile, if Peter Sagan continues to hold the Green Jersey all the way to Paris he is set to win a Porsche based upon a bet he made with Liquigas President Paolo Zani.

1 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 68:33:21
2 Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:02:05
3 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:02:23
4 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:03:19
5 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:04:48
6 Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (Spa) RadioShack-Nissan 0:06:15
7 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:06:57
8 Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro Team 0:07:30
9 Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team Europcar 0:08:31
10 Thibaut Pinot (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:08:51
11 Andreas Klöden (Ger) RadioShack-Nissan 0:09:29
12 Frank Schleck (Lux) RadioShack-Nissan 0:09:45
13 Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale 0:10:49
14 Jerome Coppel (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 0:11:27
15 Christopher Horner (USA) RadioShack-Nissan 0:12:41
16 Denis Menchov (Rus) Katusha Team 0:17:21
17 Maxime Monfort (Bel) RadioShack-Nissan 0:17:41
18 Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 0:18:04
19 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Movistar Team 0:19:02
20 Chris Anker Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 0:20:12
21 Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre - ISD 0:20:32
22 Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Katusha Team 0:20:35
23 Sandy Casar (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:27:03
24 Peter Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:27:37
25 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team 0:32:59
26 Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky Procycling 0:33:13
27 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Team Europcar 0:44:28
28 Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:44:45
29 Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:45:13
30 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:45:35
31 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 0:47:17
32 Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:47:32
33 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:48:34
34 Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Movistar Team 0:54:40
35 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:56:19
36 Alexandr Vinokourov (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 0:57:28
37 Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 0:58:59
38 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:59:50
39 Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) Katusha Team 1:00:39
40 Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 1:03:43
41 Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 1:04:31
42 George Hincapie (USA) BMC Racing Team 1:04:55
43 Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 1:05:26
44 Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 1:06:40
45 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Sharp 1:09:16
46 Mikael Cherel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 1:09:23
47 Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 1:10:52
48 Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar 1:11:52
49 Davide Malacarne (Ita) Team Europcar 1:12:30
50 Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team 1:13:24
51 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling 1:13:33
52 Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 1:13:34
53 Amaël Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing Team 1:13:39
54 Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team 1:14:22
55 Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 1:14:26
56 Jens Voigt (Ger) RadioShack-Nissan 1:14:27
57 Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 1:14:28
58 Kevin De Weert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 1:14:46
59 Fredrik Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro Team 1:14:49
60 Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team 1:15:01
61 Sylvester Szmyd (Pol) Liquigas-Cannondale 1:16:18
62 Dominik Nerz (Ger) Liquigas-Cannondale 1:18:57
63 Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 1:19:19
64 Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 1:20:15
65 Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin - Sharp 1:20:39
66 Yury Trofimov (Rus) Katusha Team 1:21:40
67 Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Movistar Team 1:22:23
68 Dries Devenyns (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 1:24:19
69 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team 1:24:24
70 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Katusha Team 1:26:05
71 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:26:07
72 Jérémy Roy (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 1:28:05
73 Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 1:28:16
74 Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack-Nissan 1:29:15
75 Arthur Vichot (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 1:30:24
76 Martin Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 1:30:38
77 Pieter Weening (Ned) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:31:48
78 Vasili Kiryienka (Blr) Movistar Team 1:33:10
79 Andrey Kashechkin (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 1:34:00
80 Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 1:36:28
81 Marco Marzano (Ita) Lampre - ISD 1:38:34
82 Guillaume Levarlet (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 1:38:38
83 Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre - ISD 1:41:23
84 Michael Morkov (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 1:41:54
85 David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Sharp 1:43:10
86 Christian Knees (Ger) Sky Procycling 1:43:23
87 Jorge Azanza Soto (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 1:45:03
88 Simone Stortoni (Ita) Lampre - ISD 1:45:39
89 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Belisol Team 1:46:52
90 Stephen Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing Team 1:46:57
91 Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 1:47:33
92 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar 1:47:36
93 Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Belisol Team 1:48:24
94 Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 1:49:41
95 Federico Canuti (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 1:50:21
96 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 1:51:08
97 Michael Albasini (Swi) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:52:00
98 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:52:06
99 Blel Kadri (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 1:52:07
100 Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:53:12
101 Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 1:53:38
102 Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 1:53:41
103 David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Sharp 1:53:43
104 Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 1:54:32
105 Kristijan Koren (Slo) Liquigas-Cannondale 1:54:52
106 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 1:54:55
107 Julien Simon (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 1:55:39
108 Romain Zingle (Bel) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 1:55:44
109 Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing Team 1:55:52
110 Koen De Kort (Ned) Argos-Shimano 1:56:49
111 Baden Cooke (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 1:57:46
112 Luca Paolini (Ita) Katusha Team 1:59:42
113 Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team 2:01:51
114 Sébastien Hinault (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 2:02:43
115 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol Team 2:03:38
116 Nick Nuyens (Bel) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 2:03:53
117 Christophe Kern (Fra) Team Europcar 2:04:42
118 Bert Grabsch (Ger) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 2:05:04
119 Daniel Oss (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 2:06:24
120 Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Belisol Team 2:06:40
121 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 2:07:09
122 Francis De Greef (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 2:07:30
123 Juan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Katusha Team 2:07:40
124 Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 2:09:07
125 Brice Feillu (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 2:10:46
126 Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 2:11:57
127 Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 2:12:04
128 Anders Lund (Den) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 2:13:32
129 Matthieu Sprick (Fra) Argos-Shimano 2:14:28
130 Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Lotto Belisol Team 2:15:03
131 Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 2:15:41
132 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 2:15:47
133 Roy Curvers (Ned) Argos-Shimano 2:19:04
134 Yohann Gene (Fra) Team Europcar 2:19:56
135 Jean Marc Marino (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 2:20:02
136 Ruben Plaza Molina (Spa) Movistar Team 2:20:04
137 Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 2:20:15
138 Cédric Pineau (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 2:21:50
139 Juan José Haedo (Arg) Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank 2:22:06
140 Bram Tankink (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 2:22:39
141 Borut Bozic (Slo) Astana Pro Team 2:23:24
142 Patrick Gretsch (Ger) Argos-Shimano 2:23:35
143 Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Sky Procycling 2:24:38
144 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Sky Procycling 2:24:43
145 Maxim Iglinskiy (Kaz) Astana Pro Team 2:24:58
146 Pablo Urtasun Perez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 2:29:09
147 Yann Huguet (Fra) Argos-Shimano 2:29:40
148 Julien Fouchard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 2:31:55
149 Sebastian Langeveld (Ned) Orica GreenEdge Cycling Team 2:33:17
150 Grega Bole (Slo) Lampre - ISD 2:33:33
151 Aliaksandr Kuchynski (Blr) Katusha Team 2:34:45
152 Albert Timmer (Ned) Argos-Shimano 2:38:04
153 Jan Ghyselinck (Bel) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne 2:38:16
154 Johan Vansummeren (Bel) Garmin - Sharp 2:40:47
155 Jimmy Engoulvent (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 2:43:46
156 Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Sharp 2:47:29

Photos: Bettini

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