Friday, October 24, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Pyrenees please Nibali, Rogers in Tour Stage 16

By
From page B3 | July 23, 2014 |

By Jamey Keaten

BAGNERES-DE-LUCHON, France — The Pyrenees on Tuesday lived up to their reputation for causing ups and downs at the Tour de France: A French rider climbed in the standings, an American went down, and an Australian rebounding from an ordeal of doping suspicions won Stage 16 in a downhill breakaway.

Riding in his 10th Tour, three-time world champion Michael Rogers of Australia won his first Tour stage behind savvy racing, well-paced riding and the absence of his Tinkoff-Saxo Bank leader Alberto Contador. The Spaniard crashed out in Stage 10, inadvertently freeing up Rogers to go after the stage win.

Race leader Vincenzo Nibali was still descending from the day’s biggest climb, the Porte de Bales, as Rogers crossed and finished 8-1/2 minutes later. But the Italian looks even more likely to win the three-week race on Sunday after keeping pace with possible contenders for the yellow jersey, and gaining time on two others.

One of the laggards was Tejay van Garderen. Unable to keep pace on the Port de Bales, the 25-year-old American was more than 3-1/2 minutes after Nibali. Van Garderen only slipped a spot in the standings, to sixth, but the gap to the rider ahead of him grew. The other laggard was France’s Romain Bardet, who finished nearly two minutes back of Nibali.

Thibaut Pinot, however, kept pace with Nibali and replaced Bardet as France’s top podium hopeful: He rose to third.

For the second straight year, the race’s entree to the Pyrenees has dented Van Garderen’s podium ambitions.

“It’s definitely disappointing,” the American said outside his BMC team bus. “I had high hopes for a podium and now it looks like it’s taken a big hit … I just didn’t have the legs, I felt a bit empty.”

“I’m just hoping I can bounce back and have a better day tomorrow.”

A year ago, the Montana native lost more than 10 minutes to the main contenders, including Chris Froome who went on to win that Tour, as they rode up to the Ax 3 Domaines ski station on Stage 8. The year before, in his Tour debut, he lost seconds in the title quest during two Pyrenean stages, but still finished fifth overall and took home the white jersey given to the race’s best young rider.

For Rogers, the 237.5-kilometer (147-mile) leg from Carcassonne to Bagneres-de-Luchon — the longest stage this year — was one of vindication and overdue Tour glory. He took a bow as he crossed the line.

“Every cyclist’s dream is to win a stage at the Tour de France,” said Rogers, who also won two stages on Italy’s Giro this year. “I can’t describe the joy I felt in the last 500 meters … I hope I don’t have to wait another 10 years to experience it again.”

Rogers came close not to riding in the Giro or the Tour at all.

In a ruling in April, the International Cycling Union accepted that meat Rogers ate in China last year probably caused his positive doping test at the Japan Cup shortly afterward. He convinced the UCI that he had not intended to cheat, and said the episode was “a very difficult time” for his family.

Rogers was suspended after that positive test. Underscoring the pressure, Cycling Australia said at the time that it would seek a maximum two-year ban if he had been found guilty of doping.

He knew the effects of clenbuterol, which helps to build muscle and burn fat, on riders’ careers. Contador lost his 2010 Tour title and served a two-year ban after testing positive for it in the final week of that race. The Spaniard also argued that ingested it through food, but lost his case.

After the UCI ruling in his own case, Rogers said Tuesday he returned with “a different outlook on life … Sometimes you need a lesson in life to see the silver lining in the cloud.”

Rogers might not have had a chance to win a Tour stage if Contador were still racing this year, because his job would have been more of a support rider. Once the Spaniard crashed out, the team’s Plan B was to aim for stage victories.

“I can be grateful, but I’m also very heartbroken that Alberto’s not here,” Rogers said.

As the day began, a breakaway group of 21 riders came together over the first two hours and stuck together for much of the day, chiseling out a lead of more than 12 minutes. Their unity disintegrated on the 12-kilometer Port de Bales, which is considered so hard that it’s beyond classification in cycling’s ranking system.

In its steepest patch, the gradient reached 11 percent. Rogers was in a bunch of five riders that came together in the final descent, and he stepped on the accelerator with less than 5 kilometers (3.2 miles) left.

After Tuesday, Nibali leads second-place Alejandro Valverde of Spain by 4 minutes, 37 seconds, and Pinot is 5:06 back. French veteran Jean-Christophe Peraud is fourth, at 6:08, and Bardet is 6:40 behind. Van Garderen is 9:25 adrift.

It was just an appetizer for the Pyrenees, with uphill finishes to follow on Wednesday and Thursday. Aside from the time trial to come, Stage 17 starting in Saint-Gaudens will be the shortest stage of this year’s race, at 124.5 kilometers (77 miles). It features three hard Category 1 climbs, and an ascent to the Saint-Lary Pla d’Adet ski station.

The final big test will come in the 54-kilometer (33.6-mile) time trial on Saturday, which is expected to determine the final result for a largely ceremonial ride for the yellow jersey a day later on the Champs-Elysees in Paris.

Comments

comments

The Associated Press

.

News

 
Courageous Thompson tapped for cycling shrine

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: A1 | Gallery

UC researchers: How low-water can our landscapes go?

By Katie F. Hetrick | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Testimony begins in Winters murder trial

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

A-Z: Downtown Davis is the place to celebrate

By Kimberly Yarris | From Page: C1

 
Hong Kong protesters to vote on staying in streets

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Cloud business lifts Microsoft’s quarterly results

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Can you give them a home?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Scientists work to save endangered desert mammal

By Kat Kerlin | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Host families needed for students and teachers from Mexico

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

Halloween Dance set Friday for teens

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Yoga and chanting workshop planned

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Downtown menu: coffee, boba tea, dessert

By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: C3

 
Day of the Dead folk art class set

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Flea Market planned Sunday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Enjoy A Taste of Capay at historic ranch

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Red-hot tunes set at Blues Harvest

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Learn how to fill a cornucopia with flowers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Video highlights Props. 1 and 2

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
‘Homeopathy at Home’ program planned

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Celebrate origami at Davis library

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Garden sale and open house features water-wise demos

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: C4

Meet Poppenga at dog park Sunday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Bay Bridge art project needs $4 million to keep shining

By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Weir honored, a year early

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Explorit: Poison-proof your home with free lecture

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A6

For a good cause

By Fred Gladdis | From Page: A6

 
Americans, internationals make connections

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6

Sutter auxiliary seeks volunteers

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

 
School board hopefuls discuss homework policy

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A7

Project Linus seeks donations

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
Walkers welcome to join Sierra Club outings

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

.

Forum

The magic is long gone

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
What’s next with Ebola?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

More theories on the abstention

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Rights beget responsibilities

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Water returns to its source

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
A solution to the drought

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Experience nature’s treasures

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Subs have other concerns

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

.

Sports

Bump, set, playoffs: Blue Devil girls clinch spot in postseason

By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Aggies expect a bonny meeting in Sacramento

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

DHS footballers take on Pleasant Grove

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
Bye No. 2 comes at perfect time for nicked-up UCD

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Shhh. Are Aggie women BWC’s best-kept secret?

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

 
UCD roundup: Preseason awards roll in for Aggie hoopster Hawkins

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Sharks suffer from road woes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

.

Features

.

Arts

‘St. Vincent:’ Quite a character

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
Rumpledethumps to play at Village Homes Performers’ Circle

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11 | Gallery

DMTC plans ‘My Fair Lady’

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Czech Philharmonic Orchestra to perform

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

Calling all artists for upcoming show

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
.

Business

 
Car Care: Five things to ask yourself when shopping for a new vehicle

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B7

.

Obituaries

Lewis Melvin Dudman

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Ann Foley Scheuring

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, October 24, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B3