Thursday, July 13, 2006
STAGE 11: LANDIS INTO YELLOW
UNFLAPPABLE FLOYD. Menchov crossed the finish line a few feet ahead of a well-recovered Leipheimer and the ever-so-steady Landis. Attack after attack challenged the core group of leading climbers. But when the dust settled, Landis found himself in the Yellow Jersey, just eight seconds ahead of yesterday's breakaway Frenchman, Cyril Dessel. Congratulations to Landis! He did not attack, he did not buckle, he did not bend; he rode steadily with the leaders to the very end...and rode right into the race lead.
SECOND AMERICAN IN YELLOW THIS YEAR. Floyd Landis is the second American to wear the Maillot Jaune this year; George Hincapie wore after Stage 1. Unfortunately, George bonked the next to the last mountain today and was not among the race leaders.
DISCOVERY CHANNEL FADING? Jose Azevedo was the only Discovery Channel team member who stayed in the leading group. Azevedo finished 15th, four minutes behind Menchov. Yaroslav Popovich finished 26th, 6:25 behind the stage winner. Azevedo is now 18th overall; Popovich is 22nd in the General Classification. Hincapie is back in 40th place, more than 23 minutes down. Maybe Discovery Channel is having the same problem that T-Mobile had last year--not cooperating together to put one rider on the podium.
HOW ABOUT LEIPHEIMER! We now know that Leipheimer had diarrhea the night before the Individual Time Trial, in which he finished over six minutes behind the leaders. We now know that he is fully recovered and fully capable of continuing to contend for a podium finish. After today's second-place finish, Leipheimer sits in 13th place, 5 minutes and 39 seconds behind Landis. Can he resume his climbing prowess in next week's Alpine stages? I hope so!
GREAT TOUR PHOTOS. Scroll easily through lots of pages of really great Tour photography at Yahoo!
STAGE RESULTS. Full results of Stage 11 (and all previous stages) by Cyclingnews.
VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS OF THE STAGE: OLN provides free video highlights and commentary wrap-ups of each stage by Bob Roll and Al Trautwig.
LISTEN TO THE TOUR LIVE. http://www.cyclingfans.com/ provides a link to Eurosport's live audio coverage of the Tour. Limited Internet TV viewing is also accessible at this site.