May 18, 2011 |
Wednesday's stage: This was the first climbing stage, featuring a hilltop finish at Sierra Road above San Jose after an 81.8-mile trip from Livermore. Winner: Chris Horner of Bend., Ore., and team RadioShack, left his teammate and three-time winner Levi Leipheimer behind with a late attack. Andy Schleck, 2010 Tour de France runner-up, finished second, more than a minute behind Horner. Leipheimer was fourth. Horner is having plenty of late-career success. At 10th, he was the top American at last year's Tour de France.
May 17, 2011 |
Monday's stage: It was scheduled to be 133.2 miles from Squaw Valley to Sacramento and travel over the Donner Pass, snow again affected the race. Because of the continuing wintry weather that caused Sunday's Stage 1 to be canceled, Stage 2 was shortened to about 76 miles and began in Nevada City with a finish in downtown Sacramento. Winner: Ben Swift, 23, of Britain and the Sky ProCycling team, won the slippery sprint finish near the state Capitol. The weather continued to be uncooperative with a downpour hitting downtown Sacramento just as the peloton arrived to ride circuits around downtown.
May 14, 2011 |
We've been accustomed to watching professional cyclists descend mountains as if they weren't traveling at 50 mph or more and as if they weren't protected by anything more than a helmet on their heads and a thin layer of Lycra on their bodies. On Monday, a 26-year-old Belgian, Wouter Weylandt, was making a descent during the Giro d'Italia when he crashed and died. He was not hugely famous, even in Europe where cycling earns front-page coverage, but his death has shaken the sport, especially riders from his team, Leopard Trek, a first-year outfit created to showcase the talents of brothers Andy and Frank Schleck.
July 24, 2010 |
Alberto Contador of Spain all but won his third Tour de France when he extended his lead over Andy Schleck to 39 seconds following the 52-kilometer individual penultimate stage time trial on Saturday. Contador held an eight-second advantage over his rival going into the timed stage and a strong finish over the final third of the course put the title in his grasp despite a valiant effort from Luxembourg's Andy Schleck, who is now set to finish runner-up for the second consecutive year.
July 23, 2010 |
Andy Schleck is likely to add a third white jersey to his collection as the best young rider in the Tour de France, but he probably will have to wait at least another year to upgrade it to yellow. The Luxembourg rider won the 17th stage of the Tour at the top of the Col du Tourmalet on Thursday, although the 25-year-old's victory was tempered by the knowledge that he had failed in what was considered to be his last chance to topple Alberto Contador, the defending champion and overall leader.