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domingo, 13 de julio de 2008

LE TOUR DE FRANCE 2008: THE FIRST IMPORTANT STAGE (This article is available in English and Español)

The first important stage of the Tour de France 2008 will take place this Monday, since the riders will climb 2 difficult and classic mountains, the “col du Tourmalet” and the final climb to Hautacam , where we begin to see the first big differences among the favourites to win the French round. At the moment we are seeing much equality and few surprises in this Tour de France, since the “a priori” favourites (Cadel Evans of the Silence-Lotto Team; Carlos Sastre, Fred and Andy Schleck of the CSC team; Alejandro Valverde and Oscar Pereiro of Caisse d'Epargne; Kim Kirchen of Team Columbia; Christian Vandevelde of Slipstream Chipotle; Damiano Cunego of the Lampre or Denis Menchov of Rabobank) are responding to the expectation and they arrive, after the difficult first week Tour de France-there are a lot of speed and crashes during this week-, with few differences of time.

Of course there are some favourites, who are showing better sensations than others and for example we want to remark the Australian Cadel Evans, because he is transmitting a great strength and a big control of the race and he is possibly the maximum candidate for the final triumph because this rider is very regular and secure both in the individual time-trial and in the mountains, where he defends very well the position and possibly he only will have problem with the explosive attacks of the offensive Italian rider Ricardo "la Cobra "Ricco -Team Saunier Duval- (I do not include Ricco in the favourites´s group, because he finished exhausted the Giro d´Italia- he concluded in the second position of the overall standings- and probably he will have many problems during the last week of the Tour de France. But this rider can be the judge of the race, because his strong attacks can help to other cyclists who follow the footsteps of this great Italian rider).The only Cadel Evans´s question is his performance during this difficult stage since he crashed during the Suday´s stage and he can have some injuries.

On the other hand, we want to emphasize the strength of the CSC team, since this team has 3 excellent riders, the Spanish Carlos Sastre- he is also transmitting good senses- and the 2 brothers Fred and Andy Schleck. So, the team´s director, Bjarne Riis, has 3 winning cards and if he administers well this situation, this team will say many things during this Tour de France and of course any of them can be the final winner. We also want to remark the excellent level of the Spanish Oscar Pereiro-it seems that he has a motorbike in this Tour, because he is very strong and he has a big control of the race and of course it is reasonable to think that he can win again the Tour de France (he won this competition in 2006)- and the Russian Denis Menchov- if he manages to overcome more or less the mountain stages, he will have many chance, because he is an excellent specialist for the individual time trial stages-.

Finally, we want to refer to some favourites, who are showing some doubts about their chances of victory. The Spanish Alejandro Valverde is one of the rider, whose level is not the expected-he is in the wrong position during the important moments of the race and he lost too much time in the individual time trial stage and of course he crashed during a stage (it is a Valverde´s tradition)-and possibly he should no be the leader of the team and he should work for Oscar Pereiro, who shows more security. Along with Valverde, another of the disappointments is the Italian Damiano Cunego, since it seems that he did not start off the Tour de France very well and when the race has important moments, he loses position and time. Anyway, we continue to bet on this Italian rider, because he has focused all his preparation during this year to arrive ok to the Tour de France and specially to the final week of the French-he even did not run the Giro d´Italia- and we think that he will gradually find his best form and it is sure that he will be with the best riders and he will fight to be the winner.

So, we recommend not to miss Tour de France in general and in particular this stage, where we will see the riders, who will not win this year the Tour de France, since if a rider loses much time during this stage, it will be very difficult that he can soar and make up the time.
Cheers,
J&F

2 comentarios:

Devo dijo...

se viene lo bueno, por algo el tour de france es de lo mejor en ciclismo

descubre a thiago neves en el blog

saludos

devo

Anónimo dijo...

pedazo de artículo J. te vas superando día a día.

Tu querídisimo colega F. que ultimamente te tiene abandonado!

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