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Davis scores a hat-trick

  • By VeloNews.com
  • Published Jan. 24, 2009
  • Updated Dec. 15, 2010 at 12:52 PM EST

Armstrong attacks but not enough

By Anthony Tan

Tour Down Under Stage 5: Davis makes it three.

Photo: Graham Watson

Allan Davis has never felt so good.

The only rider to have ridden every edition of the race, the 28-year-old Queenslander now finds himself in the enviable position of becoming the eleventh champion of the Tour Down Under and the sixth Australian to do so.

After two seasons he’d probably rather forget, he finally wrenched himself free of the mudded waters of Operación Puerto to start 2009 afresh with a new team, Quick Step, and clear of any wrongdoing.

All the way through to this day, the queen stage of the 2009 Tour Down Under, his team backed him one-hundred per cent. And he and his teammates proved their mettle over 148 leg-sapping kilometers Saturday – Davis said all he had to do was finish the job off, which, impressively though unsurprisingly given the unbeatable form he’s displayed all week, he duly did.

“Tactics [were] perfect. My team, absolutely unbelievable – they only time I hit the wind was 100 meters to go,” said a stuffed though elated Davis, slumped over his bike after giving everything he had to out-sprint José Joaquin Rojas (Caisse d’Epargne) and Martin Elmiger (AG2R).

2009 Tour Down Under

Stage 5: Snapper Point to Willunga, 148km


Winner: Allan Davis (Quick Step) wins 38-man sprint ahead of José Joaquin Rojas (Caisse d’Epargne) and Martin Elmiger (AG2R).
Race leader: Davis now leads Stuart O’Grady (Saxo) by 25 seconds.
Average speed of winner: 42.579 kph.
Sprints leader: Allan Davis (Quick Step), 30 points.
Mountains leader: Andoni Lafuente (Euskatel-Euskadi), 46 points.
Best young rider (Under 25): José Joaquin Rojas (Caisse d’Epargne).
Peloton: 122 riders. DNF: Gert Steegmans (Katusha); DNS: William Walker (Fuji-Servetto) )

“I couldn’t have rode it any better. This is unbelievable … the best feeling I’ve had in my cycling career, that’s for sure.

“It wasn’t any secret — I said they’ll be attacks and there was — I just had to stay there with my team. We did exactly what I said: ‘Stay in numbers, we go up as a group, and try and keep ‘em inside [bridging distance] at the top.’ And that’s exactly how it panned out. Mate, without the team, I wouldn’t be in this jersey, I’ll tell you right now,” said Davis.

Based on history and going off Sunday’s 90-kilometer flat circuit race around Adelaide’s city center, Davis’ 25 second margin over Saxo Bank’s Stuart O’Grady may as well be 25 minutes. It would take an absolute disaster for him not to win, even though he might not be saying it.

“It’s never over till you cross the finish line on the last day. (In) cycling, anything can happen — we’re just happy to come away with another stage victory,” said Davis. “We worked hard, we deserved it, and it’s just nice to have a bit of a buffer [compared] to last year, where I was a second behind or a couple of seconds behind going into the last stage.”

Tour Down Under Stage 5: Armstrong tests his legs.

Photo: Graham Watson

Armstrong takes a dig

Throughout this week, Armstrong has been honest, friendly, and perhaps most of all, very well prepared. Saturday was no exception: on Willunga Hill, he was with the best, but as he predicted, not quite the best. Still, after three-and-half years away from the sport that he just can’t seem to ride away from, one can only be impressed, and look forward with eyes wide open to the Tour of California, the Giro and beyond.

“I thought we’d get a group away over the top,” said Armstrong of the Willunga Hill ascents, which he said demanded a full effort from himself (at first, he joked he was riding at 25 per cent). “As you saw, a little group stayed together behind us, and Davis’ group stayed together behind them, so then it was just too hard to make a big enough difference to stay away to the finish.

Has his performance so far met or exceeded his own expectations?

“I would say somewhere between the two,” said Armstrong. “I was very curious … I had expected, just based on training, based on the power I saw in training, based on how I felt after five hours of training, I expected to be in the first few on the climbs, which, I guess you could say, I was able to do. So … it’s right in line, it’s still a long ways to go until you (journalist) guys are really asking the hard questions. But I’m pretty happy.”

Clearly, it’s been a week worth remembering for the seven-time Tour de France champion.

“Except for yesterday,” he remarked to VeloNews. “I was hurting — I didn’t have a good day yesterday, my legs were screaming at me all day long and I thought, ‘Wow, this is not that fun’. But today was a lot better.”

Tour Down Under Stage 5: A day at the beach in Aldinga.

Photo: Graham Watson

Time for a Watson photo

Saturday’s queen stage began under cool, breezy conditions on the famous Aldinga Beach Esplanade, the scene of many a Graham Watson photo at the Tour Down Under. It took no time whatsoever for the attacks to begin, no doubt keen to get a head-start on the key climb of Old Willunga Hill.

A very handy octet skipped away after 25 kilometers — comprising Jack Bobridge and Travis Meyer (both Uni SA), Matthieu Sprick (Bouygues Telecom), Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Anders Lund (Saxo Bank), Serguei Klimov (Team Katusha), Emanuele Bindi (Lampre-NGC) and Imanol Erviti Ollo (Caisse d’Epargne) — and established a two-minute lead by the time they came around the start line at Snapper Point for the first of two laps, marking the first intermediate sprint (km 40.3) taken by Australia’s Meyer of Uni SA.

A crash midway through the second lap around Aldinga gave GC threat O’Grady a momentary scare, but the popular local and the rest of those involved were soon back in the bunch in time for the second sprint, again won by Meyer.

On the first ascension of Willunga, Katusha’s Klimov attacked, though Aussie young gun Bobridge quickly bridged to him, the pair powering on the climb’s lower slopes and leaving the rest for dead. Over the top, Bobridge crossed first, Klimov next, with a chase group of four three-quarters of a minute behind. Meanwhile, the peloton behind them had split in two and the first group of 50-odd contained all the favourites including race leader Davis, Rabobank’s Graeme Brown and Armstrong, no more than a minute behind the lead pair.

Tour Down Under Stage 5: Lloyd takes a dig.

Photo: Graham Watson

It was less than 20km before riders were faced with their second and final ascension of Willunga Hill and at that point, Bobridge and Klimov had been caught, Cofidis’ David Moncoutié now leading the race solo with Matthew Lloyd (Silence-Lotto), Adam Hansen (Columbia-High Road) and Armstrong in pursuit.

Over the KOM, it was Lloyd taking top honors ahead of Moncoutié, 200 meters ahead of a group of 10 containing Armstrong, the ochre jersey of Davis a further 250 meters back. With 10km left to race, all three groups merged as one – and once that was the case, there wasn’t a single thing Davis’ rivals could do about it.

Photo Gallery

Results

Stage 5: Snapper Point to Willunga, 148km

1. Allan Davis (Aus), Quick Step, 3:28:33 (42.579 kph)
2. José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, same time
3. Martin Elmiger (Swi), Ag2r La Mondiale, s.t.
4. Stuart O’Grady (Aus), Saxo Bank, s.t.
5. Jérémy Roy (Fra), Française des Jeux, s.t.
6. Laurent Lefèvre (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, s.t.
7. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), Française des Jeux, s.t.
8. Ryder Hesjedal (Can), Garmin-Slipstream, s.t.
9. Matthew Lloyd (Aus), Silence-Lotto, s.t.
10. Julien El Farès (Fra), Cofidis, s.t.
11. Jussi Veikkanen (Fin), Française des Jeux, s.t.
12. Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, s.t.
13. Thomas Rohregger (Aut), Milram, s.t.
14. Vladimir Efimkin (Rus), Ag2r La Mondiale, s.t.
15. Mickaël Chérel (Fra), Française des Jeux, s.t.
16. Mauro Santambrogio (Ita), Lampre-NGC, s.t.
17. George Hincapie (USA), Columbia-High Road, s.t.
18. Michael Rogers (Aus), Columbia-High Road, s.t.
19. Mario Aerts (Bel), Silence-Lotto, s.t.
20. Aleksandr Kuchynski (Blr), Liquigas, s.t.
21. Matthew Wilson (Aus), Uni SA, s.t.
22. Nicolas Roche (Irl), Ag2r La Mondiale, s.t.
23. Lance Armstrong (USA), Astana, s.t.
24. Tom Stubbe (Bel), Silence-Lotto, s.t.
25. Simon Clarke (Aus), Uni SA, s.t.
26. Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, s.t.
27. Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, s.t.
28. Jens Voigt (Ger), Saxo Bank, s.t.
29. Jesus Hernandez (Spa), Astana, s.t.
30. Trent Lowe (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, s.t.
31. Mathieu Perget (Fra), Caisse d’Epargne, s.t.
32. Oscar Pereiro Sio (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, s.t.
33. Christian Meier (Can), Garmin-Slipstream, s.t.
34. Javier Megías Leal (Spa), Fuji-Servetto, s.t.
35. Perrig Quemeneur (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, s.t.
36. José Luis Rubiera Vigil (Spa), Astana, s.t.
37. David Moncoutié (Fra), Cofidis, s.t.
38. Frederik Willems (Bel), Liquigas, s.t.
39. Adam Hansen (Aus), Columbia-High Road, at 0:35
40. Matteo Tosatto (Ita), Quick Step, at 0:39
41. Nicki Sørensen (Den), Saxo Bank, at 0:46
42. Jack Bobridge (Aus), Uni SA, at 1:06
43. Francesco Reda (Ita), Quick Step, at 1:21
44. Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel), Katusha, at 1:54
45. Stef Clement (Ned), Rabobank, at 1:54
46. Graeme Brown (Aus), Rabobank, at 1:54
47. Mathew Hayman (Aus), Rabobank, at 1:54
48. Christian Knees (Ger), Milram, at 1:54
49. René Mandri (Est), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 1:54
50. Mickaël Buffaz (Fra), Cofidis, at 1:54
51. Alexandr Pliuschin (Mda), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 1:54
52. Glenn d’Hollander (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 1:54
53. Alexandre Pichot (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 1:54
54. Vincent Jérôme (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 1:54
55. Iñaki Isasi Flores (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:54
56. Yoann Offredo (Fra), Française des Jeux, at 1:54
57. Alexander Efimkin (Rus), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 1:54
58. Maxim Iglinsky (Kaz), Astana, at 1:54
59. Sébastien Hinault (Fra), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 1:54
60. Steve Morabito (Swi), Astana, at 1:54
61. Imanol Erviti Ollo (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 1:54
62. Maciej Bodnar (Pol), Liquigas, at 1:54
63. Kasper Klostergaard Larsen (Den), Saxo Bank, at 1:54
64. Serguei Klimov (Rus), Katusha, at 2:02
65. Dries Devenyns (Bel), Quick Step, at 2:18
66. Davide Malacarne (Ita), Quick Step, at 3:18
67. Tom Leezer (Ned), Rabobank, at 3:18
68. Cameron Meyer (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 3:42
69. Martin Müller (Ger), Milram, at 7:00
70. Travis Meyer (Aus), Uni SA, at 7:00
71. Anders Lund (Den), Saxo Bank, at 7:00
72. Davide Viganò (Ita), Fuji-Servetto, at 10:11
73. Mathieu Drujon (Fra), Caisse d’Epargne, at 11:44
74. Robbie McEwen (Aus), Katusha, at 11:44
75. Rick Flens (Ned), Rabobank, at 11:44
76. Rein Taaramae (Est), Cofidis, at 11:44
77. Nikolay Trusov (Rus), Katusha, at 11:44
78. Jonas Ljungblad (Swe), Silence-Lotto, at 11:44
79. Frank Hoj (Den), Saxo Bank, at 11:44
80. Timmy Duggan (USA), Garmin-Slipstream, at 11:44
81. Hilton Clarke (Aus), Fuji-Servetto, at 11:44
82. Willem Stroetinga (Ned), Milram, at 11:44
83. Volodymyr Zagorodniy (Ukr), Lampre-NGC, at 11:44
84. Matteo Bono (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 11:44
85. David Loosli (Swi), Lampre-NGC, at 11:44
86. Emanuele Bindi (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 11:44
87. Matthieu Sprick (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 11:44
88. Francesco Chicchi (Ita), Liquigas, at 13:10
89. Bernhard Eisel (Aut), Columbia-High Road, at 13:10
90. Kurt Hovelijnck (Bel), Quick Step, at 13:10
91. Claudio Corioni (Ita), Liquigas, at 13:10
92. Gianni Da Ros (Ita), Liquigas, at 13:10
93. Andrea Grendene (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 13:10
94. Chris Sutton (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 13:10
95. Guillaume Blot (Fra), Cofidis, at 13:10
96. Luca Barla (Ita), Milram, at 13:10
97. Jacopo Guanieri (Ita), Liquigas, at 13:10
98. Matthew Goss (Aus), Saxo Bank, at 13:10
99. Ivan Dominquez (Cub), Fuji-Servetto, at 13:10
100. Aaron Kemps (Aus), Uni SA, at 13:10
101. Gregory Henderson (NZl), Columbia-High Road, at 13:10
102. Rony Martias (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 13:10
103. Mathieu Claude (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 13:10
104. Florent Brard (Fra), Cofidis, at 13:10
105. Alexandre Usov (Blr), Cofidis, at 13:10
106. Sergio De Lis (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 13:10
107. Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa), Katusha, at 13:10
108. Olivier Kaisen (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 13:10
109. Hubert Schwab (Swi), Quick Step, at 13:10
110. Scott Davis (Aus), Uni SA, at 13:10
111. Julian Dean (NZl), Garmin-Slipstream, at 13:10
112. Josu Agirre Aseginolaza (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 13:10
113. Mark Renshaw (Aus), Columbia-High Road, at 13:10
114. Andoni Lafuente (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 13:10
115. Pablo Urtasun (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 13:10
116. Ronny Scholz (Ger), Milram, at 13:10
117. Kenny De Haes (Bel), Katusha, at 13:10
118. Aitor Hernandez Gutierrez (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 13:10
119. Jos Van Emden (Ned), Rabobank, at 13:10
120. Markus Eichler (Ger), Milram, at 13:10
121. Assan Bazayev (Kaz), Astana, at 13:10
122. Vitaliy Buts (Ukr), Lampre-NGC, at 13:10


Overall standings

1. Allan Davis (Aus), Quick Step 17:44:59
2. Stuart O’Grady (Aus), Saxo Bank, at 0:25
3. José Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 0:30
4. Martin Elmiger (Swi), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 0:30
5. Michael Rogers (Aus), Columbia-High Road, at 0:38
6. Matthew Wilson (Aus), Uni SA, at 0:39
7. Mauro Santambrogio (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 0:40
8. Jussi Veikkanen (Fin), Française des Jeux, at 0:40
9. Mickaël Chérel (Fra), Française des Jeux, at 0:40
10. Ryder Hesjedal (Can), Garmin-Slipstream, at 0:40
11. George Hincapie (USA), Columbia-High Road, at 0:40
12. Wesley Sulzberger (Aus), Française des Jeux, at 0:40
13. Nicolas Roche (Irl), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 0:44
14. Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 0:44
15. Mathieu Perget (Fra), Caisse d’Epargne, at 0:44
16. Matthew Lloyd (Aus), Silence-Lotto, at 0:44
17. Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 0:47
18. Jérémy Roy (Fra), Française des Jeux, at 0:49
19. Thomas Rohregger (Aut), Milram, at 0:49
20. Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 0:49
21. Christian Meier (Can), Garmin-Slipstream, at 0:49
22. Aleksandr Kuchynski (Blr), Liquigas, at 0:49
23. Javier Megías Leal (Spa), Fuji-Servetto, at 0:49
24. Simon Clarke (Aus), Uni SA, at 0:49
25. Trent Lowe (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 0:49
26. Oscar Pereiro Sio (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 0:49
27. Jens Voigt (Ger), Saxo Bank, at 0:49
28. Jesus Hernandez (Spa), Astana, at 0:49
29. Lance Armstrong (USA), Astana, at 0:49
30. Perrig Quemeneur (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 1:41
31. Graeme Brown (Aus), Rabobank, at 2:08
32. David Moncoutié (Fra), Cofidis, at 2:29
33. Mathew Hayman (Aus), Rabobank, at 2:34
34. Christian Knees (Ger), Milram, at 2:38
35. Vincent Jérôme (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 2:38
36. Imanol Erviti Ollo (Spa), Caisse d’Epargne, at 2:39
37. Sébastien Hinault (Fra), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 2:43
38. Kasper Klostergaard Larsen (Den), Saxo Bank, at 2:43
39. Francesco Reda (Ita), Quick Step, at 2:46
40. Matteo Tosatto (Ita), Quick Step, at 3:18
41. Alexandre Pichot (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 3:23
42. Glenn d’Hollander (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 3:29
43. Alexander Efimkin (Rus), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 3:30
44. Steve Morabito (Swi), Astana, at 3:30
45. Adam Hansen (Aus), Columbia-High Road, at 4:15
46. Frederik Willems (Bel), Liquigas, at 5:35
47. Anders Lund (Den), Saxo Bank, at 7:49
48. Tom Leezer (Ned), Rabobank, at 11:34
49. Tom Stubbe (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 13:11
50. Dries Devenyns (Bel), Quick Step, at 15:14
51. Mathieu Drujon (Fra), Caisse d’Epargne, at 19:50
52. Matthew Goss (Aus), Saxo Bank, at 20:55
53. Julien El Farès (Fra), Cofidis, at 22:38
54. Mario Aerts (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 22:38
55. Vladimir Efimkin (Rus), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 23:21
56. Laurent Lefèvre (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 24:00
57. José Luis Rubiera Vigil (Spa), Astana, at 24:00
58. Mickaël Buffaz (Fra), Cofidis, at 24:23
59. Iñaki Isasi Flores (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 24:27
60. Rick Flens (Ned), Rabobank, at 24:31
61. Yoann Offredo (Fra), Française des Jeux, at 24:32
62. Nicki Sørensen (Den), Saxo Bank, at 24:33
63. Alexandr Pliuschin (Mda), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 24:44
64. Jack Bobridge (Aus), Uni SA, at 24:51
65. René Mandri (Est), Ag2r La Mondiale, at 25:05
66. Matteo Bono (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 25:13
67. Maciej Bodnar (Pol), Liquigas, at 25:19
68. Stef Clement (Ned), Rabobank, at 26:09
69. Serguei Klimov (Rus), Katusha, at 27:00
70. Davide Malacarne (Ita), Quick Step, at 27:25
71. Cameron Meyer (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 28:14
72. Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel), Katusha, at 29:27
73. David Loosli (Swi), Lampre-NGC, at 29:32
74. Gregory Henderson (NZl), Columbia-High Road, at 29:57
75. Maxim Iglinsky (Kaz), Astana, at 30:05
76. Martin Müller (Ger), Milram, at 30:25
77. Jos Van Emden (Ned), Rabobank, at 31:13
78. Travis Meyer (Aus), Uni SA, at 31:15
79. Davide Viganò (Ita), Fuji-Servetto, at 32:49
80. Robbie McEwen (Aus), Katusha, at 34:35
81. Hilton Clarke (Aus), Fuji-Servetto, at 35:33
82. Luca Barla (Ita), Milram, at 36:00
83. Alexandre Usov (Blr), Cofidis, at 36:35
84. Rony Martias (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 36:35
85. Josu Agirre Aseginolaza (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 36:35
86. Hubert Schwab (Swi), Quick Step, at 37:10
87. Ronny Scholz (Ger), Milram, at 37:33
88. Kurt Hovelijnck (Bel), Quick Step, at 37:36
89. Frank Hoj (Den), Saxo Bank, at 38:11
90. Matthieu Sprick (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 38:28
91. Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa), Katusha, at 39:02
92. Timmy Duggan (USA), Garmin-Slipstream, at 39:17
93. Rein Taaramae (Est), Cofidis, at 39:17
94. Nikolay Trusov (Rus), Katusha, at 40:15
95. Vitaliy Buts (Ukr), Lampre-NGC, at 40:41
96. Claudio Corioni (Ita), Liquigas, at 41:18
97. Gianni Da Ros (Ita), Liquigas, at 41:21
98. Assan Bazayev (Kaz), Astana, at 42:32
99. Emanuele Bindi (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 43:05
100. Jacopo Guanieri (Ita), Liquigas, at 43:22
101. Volodymyr Zagorodniy (Ukr), Lampre-NGC, at 43:36
102. Mark Renshaw (Aus), Columbia-High Road, at 43:43
103. Andrea Grendene (Ita), Lampre-NGC, at 43:58
104. Olivier Kaisen (Bel), Silence-Lotto, at 44:25
105. Aitor Hernandez Gutierrez (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 44:31
106. Jonas Ljungblad (Swe), Silence-Lotto, at 46:37
107. Chris Sutton (Aus), Garmin-Slipstream, at 48:03
108. Scott Davis (Aus), Uni SA, at 48:04
109. Aaron Kemps (Aus), Uni SA, at 50:13
110. Francesco Chicchi (Ita), Liquigas, at 53:39
111. Julian Dean (NZl), Garmin-Slipstream, at 53:39
112. Willem Stroetinga (Ned), Milram, at 54:33
113. Kenny De Haes (Bel), Katusha, at 55:01
114. Markus Eichler (Ger), Milram, at 55:59
115. Guillaume Blot (Fra), Cofidis, at 58:51
116. Florent Brard (Fra), Cofidis, at 59:20
117. Mathieu Claude (Fra), Bbox Bouygues Telecom, at 1:01:26
118. Andoni Lafuente (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:02:12
119. Bernhard Eisel (Aut), Columbia-High Road, at 1:02:22
120. Sergio De Lis (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:02:22
121. Pablo Urtasun (Spa), Euskaltel-Euskadi, at 1:02:22
122. Ivan Dominquez (Cub), Fuji-Servetto, at 1:23:14

FILED UNDER: Race Report / Race Results / Road TAGS: /

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