Sunday, July 03, 2005
TdF Stage 2
TOM BOONEN SPRINTS TO WIN. Stages 2 and 3 take the riders across the northern flatlands of France. These stages are set up for sprint specialists to shine. Typically, after pedaling as a group for over 100 miles, a handful of sprinters will blast to the front and try to out-pedal each other across the finish line. Today, Belgian Tom Boonen outdueled Aussie Robbie McEwen across the line. At stake for the sprinters is claim to the Green Jersey, which is worn by the best sprinter in the race. Round 1 goes to Boonen, but I imagine McEwen will wear the Maillot Vert in Paris.
STAGE 2 NOTES:
1. The Maillot Jaune (overall race leader's Yellow Jersey) is still worn by American David Zabriskie; Armstrong is safely in second, 2 seconds behind Z.
2. Frenchman Thomas Voekler, who won the hearts of the French when he spent ten days in the Maillot Jaune in last year's Tour, now wears the Polka-dot Jersey as the best climber. Voekler, 25 years old, was in a breakway in Stage 2 and led the escapees over the two small "mountains" of the stage to grab the first climber's points.
3. When a group of riders cross the finish line in a group, they all receive the same time.