Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday round-up

  • Pierre Cazaux showed himself on today's Tour of Poland opener by getting into the day's main break. The Frenchman has suffered from bad luck for big parts of the season but hopefully today's good day out can spur him on to bigger things towards the end of the year. He was, along with his breakaway companions, naturally reeled back in as the sprint approached. Koldo tried to get into the mix but never really got a good position and eventually cruised home in a disappointing 20th place. On the bright side though all eight riders came in with the pack and thus avoided losing any GC aspirations on the very first stage.
  • In today's other race, the Circuito de Getxo, Euskaltel failed to put the finishing touches to their good team-work. The team spent quite a lot of time at the front, controlling proceedings, but couldn't put a rider into the decisive three-man break. Lobato impressively grabbed the win through his strong finishing kick, while Bilbao, Nieve and Oroz all came in with the main chasing group three seconds down in 13th, 18th and 23rd respectively. Antón, who tried to break clear with a powerful surge on a climb late on, finished up 27th, while R Pérez was 43rd, Urtasun 54th and Isasi 70th.
  • Orbea had a rather more successful Getxo experience, putting Zabalo in the break of the day and taking 10th through the ever-reliable Ricardo García. Martín finished in 20th in the select group at three seconds, Urain was 45th, Bagües 51st, Zabalo 53rd, Etxebarria 57th, Sáez 58th, and Aberasturi 68th.
  • The Vuelta a Burgos commences this coming Wednesday and Vuelta-bound duo Antón and Nieve will naturally be present. There's some confusion though whether defending champ Samu will line up. Some reports says he will, some don't. It's rumoured Velasco and Txurruka will make their return to competition after their injury-enforced Tour abandonments, but this seems a bit premature to be so I wouldn't put my money on it. Stay tuned the following days for a complete and final line-up.

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