Vanendert Climbs to Victory in Stage 14
Jelle Vanendert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) has won Stage 14 of the 2011 Tour de France.
with six km left.
With five km to go, Vanendert led the yellow jersey group by 0:28. Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale) made a couple of accelerations, but he accomplished nothing but the dropping of Damiano Cunego (Lampre-ISD).
With four km remaining and Vanendert leading the yellow jersey group by 0:38, Samuel Sanchez made his move. Two km later, Basso attacked again, but the other heads of state shut down the move.
Vanendert was exultant as he crossed the finish line. After the stage, the Omega Pharma-Lotto man, who had just won his first professional victory, said, "I came to this Tour in great condition. I was very strong in the spring classics and then I took a break, with a training camp in Italy and later the Dauphine. The team supported me, and I am in my best shape now."
Vanendert added, "The other GC rivals were watching each other, so that opened up a window for me. There were a lot of attacks early. I decided to wait until we were higher on the climb before making my move."
The other big winner was Voeckler, who was not expected to keep his yellow jersey. The Frenchman said, "I was able to follow, but I was really suffering, but that was the same for everyone," he said. "The objective today was to keep the yellow jersey. I expected to lose some time today and I thought it would be a question of seconds. I never thought that I would be able to stay with the favorites."
In the overall, Voeckler leads Frank Schleck (Saxo Bank) and Cadel Evans (BMC) at 2:06. Stage 15 will not change this state of affairs. The rolling, 193-km run from Limoux to Montpellier should end in a cavalry charge. Who will win it? Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad)? Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo)? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and www.roadcycling.mobi to find out!