Intrigue in today's TdF stage: CSC working for LA against Jan?

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Anonymous's picture

This is from

Looking better than he has since last year’s race, Ullrich even got out of the saddle a few times to keep his speed high and quickly got a minute clear of Armstrong’s group, led by Floyd Landis.

With more than 50 kilometres to go and just two team-mates to call on, it seemed Armstrong might have to respond himself before too much longer. But rescue came in the large shape of Jens Voigt, who was instructed to stop chasing for the stage win behind Rasmussen and Virenque and drop back to pace the Armstrong/Basso group back up to Ullrich. Although CSC team boss Bjarne Riis has been talking about Basso not giving up hope of winning the Tour, releasing US Postal from the hardship of pace-making did not appear to be the way to do it. TV pictures of a note being passed from a US Postal to a CSC team car only increased the intrigue.

Anonymous's picture
Yogi (not verified)
not much intrigue

Basso (lesser ITTlist than Ullrich) and CSC wants to secure 2nd place. Ullrich is much more of a threat to displace Basso than LA.

To limit the damage of Ullrich’s attack, CSC has to supply the muscle.

Maybe the piece of paper was a Thank You note? I'll be surprised to see Basso attack LA this week because he didn't go with Ullrich today.

Anonymous's picture
<a href="">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
It makes sense to me

I watched some of the coverage this morning - enough so to see Voigt dropped back. As Sherwyn commented, it made perfect sense for him to do such. He was in no man's land, getting dropped from one and then between two breaks. He was definitely “spent” at the time. (Perhaps he was filling in for the sidelined Jakob Piil).

It makes sense to me that CSC helps with the pacemaking as it helps ensure Basso finishes at least second on the podium. Remember it started when Basso and Armstrong were helping each other in the stages each of them won - to put more time into their other competitors.

Reading Bjarne Riis's comments from the prior day, it sounds like he dies not have much confidence that Basso could beat Armstrong. This could be a public/psychological ploy. Sure Basso is not known to time trial as well, but learning a thing or two from LA, CSC has spent some time in the wind tunnel over the winter.

I find T Mobile's strategy more intriguing. Before today, Ullrich publicly said he was going to support Klöden. Somewhat surprisingly (but not to Johan B) Ullrich went on the attack today and finished only 3 seconds ahead of Klöden. Jan picked up the additional time bonus 3rd place presents. At the very least, Klöden surely could have used those few time bonus extra seconds and have a teammate to share/set pace with or both. Another ploy, perhaps.

Anonymous's picture
Herb Dershowitz (not verified)

Check out the report from Riis in He gives his explanation of today's strategy

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