The Radio Shack double shot took control of Paris-Nice. Old man Andreas Klöden won the stage and yanked the yellow jersey off Thomas de Gendt while young gun Janez Brajkovic rolled in seventh.
Both riders are excellent in the time trial so they’re in a strong position for tomorrow’s 27 kilometer time trial. Johan Bruyneel is happy and Klodi awaits his congratulatory tweet from Lance Armstrong.
The 35-year-old German actually out-sprinted Olympic road champion Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Matteo Carrara (Vacansoleil-DCM) for his first victory since 2009.
Kloden won from a select group of eight riders that punched it over the summit of the Col de la Mûre ascent. In the overall standings, Sanchez is four lousy seconds behind Kloden and Tony Martin (HTC-Highroad), fourth on the stage, is ten seconds from glory.
Le Grand Surprise of Paris-Nice is Vacansoleil’s Thomas de Gendt. He’s targeting a top ten finish but was dropped early on the last climb and lost 15 minutes. Forget the number 10 because he did a bat-wing freefall down to 63rd. Ouch.
(more to come soon)