3.11.2012

Paris Nice show down and more

It will be thrilling today on the Col d'Èze: 9.6 km climbing against the clock to gain or lose the final victory in one of the most prestigious races in the early season. Somebody even say the season starts here, with that short tour that looks like a Tour in short, with the Alpes, the flats and the sea of the beautiful France. Almost an early tast and test for July.
I expect Frank Schleck and Kloden here, then Cunego - to conclude his very good race - and of course Leipheimer - against the clock and Lady Luck - finally Porte and Wiggins. Yesterday when Sky put his squad in front and Wiggins entered Nice like a king in yellow... "Miguel Indurain!" I immediately thought. Childhood memories. July is not so far. Presents and absents are clearly signed on the paper at this point of the year. The second test will be in June: Tour de Suisse or Dauphiné. I don't considere the Ardennes Classics a test because who target the Tour will not be at his 100% there. 
Not this year: many already told that, not only Andy Schleck. The big absent of course. But Evans in Tirreno Adriatico didn't look so good: he started it  with only two days of racing. Nibali is present but not here. Not in that TT for climbers that looks designed for him. He opted for Tirreno and was disappointed: he didn't apreciate Sagan's team work. He says the team mate passsed him leading Kreuziger. I didn't see that. I see that Nibali was slowing down, too much to win and Sagan had the coolness to acelerate again to take the stage for Liquigas in front of Kreuziger who was faster and in a better position. Italian races show he is probably back at the top level: I'm glad.
Back to Paris Nice: a Wiggins like that with a team Sky like that can win a Tour de France like that: he can dominate in the TT, control in the flat and attack in the few mountain stages. It will be hard for everybody else. It will be splendid to see. Bruyneel is right to say Andy Schleck must be brave not just good.

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MARYCZ Jaroslaw
LLOYD Matthew
KITTEL Marcel
KLOSTERGAARD-LARSEN Kasper
DALL’ANTONIA Tiziano
KING Edward
PATE Danny
GAUDIN Damien
KASHECHKIN Andrey
VAN WINDEN Dennis
GRETSCH Patrick
WYNANTS Maarten
SAEZ Adrian
MORKOV Michael
CAZAUX Pierre
MAASKANT Martijn
WILSON Matthew
GHYSELINCK Jan
BUFFAZ Mickaël
CHAVANEL Sébastien
GUARNIERI Jacopo
BONO Matteo
VIVIANI Elia
HUTAROVICH Yauheni
JEROME Vincent
HUSHOVD Thor
NIERMANN Grischa Jan
JORGENSEN Jonas Aaen
FEILLU Romain
DE CLERCQ Bart
MAES Nikolas
RIGHI Daniele
KRISTOFF Alexander
RENSHAW Mark
GARCIA AMBROA Ricardo
KLIER Andreas
VANMARCKE Sep
FERNANDEZ Koldo
BILLE Gaëtan
MATE MARDONES Luis Angel
FISCHER Murilo Antoniobil
MONCOUTIE David
VALENTIN Tristan
ZANDIO Xabier
LE MEVEL Christophe
HENDERSON Gregory
KEUKELEIRE Jens
RAVARD Anthony
PINEAU Cedric
DEGENKOLB John
PERAUD Jean-Christophe
DUMOULIN Samuel
KROON Karsten
BOONEN Tom
WYSS Danilo
DEKKER Thomas
BOECKMANS Kris
THOMAS Geraint
KIRYIENKA Vasil
TAARAMAE Rein
ERVITI Imanol
GUTIERREZ José Ivan
VANDENBERGH Stijn
GENIEZ Alexandre
SIVTSOV Kanstantsin
SULZBERGER Wesley
CLARKE Simon
HAUSSLER Heinrich
BOLE Grega
GERRANS Simon
DE WEERT Kevin
LONGO BORGHINI Paolo
BERTAGNOLLI Leonardo
HIVERT Jonathan
PORTE Richie
ARROYO David
VEUCHELEN Frederik
IZAGUIRRE INSAUSTI Gorka
GESCHKE Simon
SEELDRAYERS Kevin
MARTIN Tony
FEDRIGO Pierrick
DUPONT Hubert
LOPEZ GARCIA David
BARREDO Carlos
DE KORT Koen
IRIZAR Markel
LAGUTIN Sergey
BRAJKOVIC Janez
VORGANOV Eduard
CARUSO Gianpaolo
SZMYD Sylvester
MOINARD Amaël
ULISSI Diego
ANTON Igor

MINARD Sébastien
LUND Anders
TALABARDON Yannick
GESLIN Anthony
NERZ Dominik
ARASHIRO Yukiya
LEUKEMANS Bjorn
TEN DAM Laurens
ASTARLOZA Mikel
SIMON Julien
SICARD Romain
LEIPHEIMER Levi
MALACARNE Davide

LE LAY David
MORENO Javier
ALBASINI Michael
BERNAUDEAU Giovanni
PICHOT Alexandre
FLORENCIO Xavier
DE GENDT Thomas
CHEREL Mikael
CAPECCHI Eros
MEERSMAN Gianni
KLÖDEN Andréas
VOIGT Jens
SCHLECK Frank

VOECKLER Thomas
PIETROPOLLI Daniele
BOOKWALTER Brent
PETROV Evgeni
ROCHE Nicolas
GAVAZZI Francesco
ROY Jérémy
NAVARRO Daniel
CUNEGO Damiano
COPPEL Jérôme
BOUET Maxime
URAN Rigoberto
SANCHEZ Luis-Leon

ROJAS Jose Joaquin
VICIOSO Angel
KISERLOVSKI Robert
CHAVANEL Sylvain
JEANNESSON Arnold
MONFORT Maxime
VAN GARDEREN Tejay

SPILAK Simon
VALVERDE Alejandro
WESTRA Lieuwe
WIGGINS Bradley
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hh

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