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2012/06/01 TOUR DE LUXEMBOURG: STAGE 1: ANOTHER FOR GREIPEL, CAETHOVEN and DRUCKER 11th & 12th!
Having won three straight stages at the Tour of Belgium last week, Andre Greipel (Lotto Belisol) continued his run of top form with a sprint victory in the opening road stage at the Skoda-Tour de Luxembourg. Davide Appollonio (Sky) finished second behind Greipel, followed by Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis) in third place for the 181km stage.
Prologue time trial winner Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun) finished safely in the peloton and remains in the general classification lead, as no time bonuses were allotted during today’s stage. Grégory Rast (Radioshack-Nissan) and Jonathan Hivert (Saur-Sojasun) hold second and third overall respectively, tied on time at three seconds behind Engoulvent.
The attacks came literally from the gun in the Tour of Luxembourg’s first road stage, as Jesus Rosendo Prado (Andalucia) jumped away from the peloton at kilometre zero. The Spaniard was soon joined by Albert Timmer (Argos-Shimano) to form the early break. The duo’s advantage was pegged at two to three minutes and their escape continued through the third and final classified climb at 117.9km.
The RadioShack-Nissan team set a strong tempo over the final ascent in hope of splintering the field, and while the team was successful in neutralising the escape their plan didn’t break up the peloton as planned. However, several kilometres later, Jens Voigt (RadioShack-Nissan) launched a solo attack and soon found himself with a lead of approximately three minutes over the peloton in the approach to the 16km finishing circuit.
“I thought maybe I could take the stage win and the yellow jersey,” said Voigt on his team website. “I was believing in myself today, especially when the gap was something close to three minutes. I gave it everything I had.”
The teams of the sprinters, however, increased the tempo in the peloton and caught Voigt inside the final 10 kilometres and set the stage for a field sprint finale.
1 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol Team 4:53:56
2 Davide Appollonio (Ita) Sky Procycling
3 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
4 Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
5 Koen De Kort (Ned) Argos-Shimano
6 Sascha Weber (Ger) Team Differdange – Magic-Sportfood.de
7 Roy Curvers (Ned) Argos-Shimano
8 Vincent Baestaens (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Euphony
9 Ben Swift (GBr) Sky Procycling
10 Yohann Gene (Fra) Team Europcar
11 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
12 Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
23 Gregory Habeaux (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
30 Kevin Ista (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
50 Kevin Van Melsen (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
70 Arnoud Van Groen (Ned) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
73 Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s
80 Jurgen Van Goolen (Bel) Accent Jobs – Willems Veranda’s