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La Vuelta a Espana 2010: Stage 1 and Stage 2 #Vuelta

Posted by bikezilla on August 29, 2010


The curse of Garmin’s Christian Vande Velde is transferable.

Tyler Farrar’s (Garmin) leadout man, Julian Dean (also Garmin), crashed due to uneven pavement between the road and a bike lane, an hour prior to the Prologue’s team timetrial (TTT).

Sounds like he may have hurt his elbow and rib pretty badly. Though he tried to race he, fell back from the team early on. He finished the Prologue, but was dead last, 3:24 behind winning squad, HTC.

Which put Mark Cavendish in the Red (leader’s) Jersey for Stage 2.

There were complaints about Stage 1 being run at night, which did contribute to Dean’s crash. I’m a little surprised we didn’t see more crashes for the same reason.

But if riders didn’t have that to contend with they would have had to deal with the ungodly hot afternoon temps, which have been topping 110F recently.

Dean was supposed to be ok to start Stage 2.

STAGE 2:

Former sprinter, currently milking his past success and ability to steal a team spot he doesn’t deserve, Thor Hushovd (Cervelo) finished 32nd (same as his age), after bad-mouthing Carlos Sastre for under-performing over the past two years.

Garmin’s Tyler Farrar pulled a Petachi and jumped early in hopes of blind-siding HTC’s Mark Cavendish in the final sprint. But Cav must have been waiting for it because he was instantly on top of Farrar. Cav seemed to easily take the front away from Tyler and held the lead at the approach to the line . . .

. . . which is when a non-French guy from a French team, Yahueni Hutarovich (Francaise de Jeux) swept along the barriers to overtake Cav and stole the biggest, coolest win of his career, snatching away the Points lead at the same time.

Can we change “Yahueni” to “Yawhodahellishe”? A lot to type, I know, but . . .

So Cav holds on the to Red, but gets bumped back to 2nd for the Stage and in the Points (sprinters) competition.

Farrar, coming in 3rd today, who was my great hope for the day and for the Points, doesn’t seem to have what he needs in order to top Cav over the course of this Vuelta.

After his amazing performance with a broken wrist at the Tour, I was really expecting him to be The Man, here.

Alessandro Petachi (Lampre) finished just behind Farrar in 4th.

Looks like Garmin’s Julian Dean did finish today. The official Vuelta site lists him as being in 196th (last) place, 19:55 down.

All the GC guys finished waaaaaaaaaay back (100th+ placings), knowing that as soon as the climbing begins the sprinters will all fall to the back whimpering while the big dogs take over for real.

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