Sergio Paulinho Wins Stage 10 of Tour
Sergio Paulinho (RadioShack) has won Stage 10 of the 2010 Tour de France.
Sergio Paulinho (RadioShack) has won Stage 10 of the 2010 Tour de France. The Portuguese rider, who won a silver medal in the Olympic road race in Athens in 2004, took a two-up sprint at the end of a daylong break to win the rugged, 179-km stage from Chambery to Gap in 5:10:56. Vasily Kiriyenka (Caisse d'Epargne) finished second, and Dries Devenyns (Quick Step) finished third at 1:29. Andy Schleck (Quick Step) remains the maillot jaune.
More hot, fair weather greeted the riders. A number of abortive sallies occurred before Mario Aerts (Omega Pharma), Kiriyenka, Paulinho, and Devenyns got off of the front at 35 km. None of these riders was a GC contender, so the Saxo Bank-led peloton let them go. At 40 km, Maxime Bouet (Ag2r) and Pierre Rolland (Bbox Bouyges Telecom) attempted to bridge up to the move. The pair joined the break at about 60 km, just as the break took on the Category 1 Cote de Laffrey. At this point, the break led the bunch by 8:45.
The break's lead held as it went over the Category 2 Col du Noyer (145 km). Bouet was dropped on the climb, but he got back on. Behind, Astana, Rabobank, and Saxo Bank began to drive the peloton.
With 20 km left, the escapees led the field by about 12 minutes. Five km later, Aerts attacked his companions. Kiriyenka brought him back. Bouet was dropped permanently. Devenyns countered, and Paulinho and Kiriyenka led the chase.
When Devenyns was caught, Paulinho countered. Only Kiriyenka could follow. With 10 km left, the pair led the pursuit by 0:46. Five km later, their lead was nearly a minute. Paulinho led the pair into the last km.
Kiriyenka took over at the front. Paulinho burst past the Caisse d'Epargne rider and held him off in a photo finish. The stage win was a fillip for the morale of RadioShack, whose GC men, Lance Armstrong and Levi Leipheimer, have had crashes and assorted bad luck in this year's Tour. The victory is also a boost to RadioShack's hopes of winning the team competition.
In the overall, Schleck leads Alberto Contador (Astana) by 0:41 and Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel) by 2:45. Stage 11 will not change this state of affairs. The 184.5-km run from Sisteron to Bourg-les-Valence has one categorized climb, a Category 3, and that is less than one third of the way through the stage. Look for a bunch sprint finish. Who will win it? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!