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Jul 01 2012

2012 Le Tour – Stage 1

Liege – Seraing (123 miles)

Le.  Tour.  De.  France.

Four miles in is a little early to despair.  Wiggins didn’t win but he didn’t have to.  Evans is outside the top ten but by just a bit.  You can’t read too much into this, the entire field is separated by a mere 1:06 at this point with 95 riders within :30 of the lead.

What happens for the next several days traditionally is that we wait for breakdowns and crashes to thin the field and drop a few contenders.  This year the course is so flat that it may tempt a team (I sure would be) to put on a Tiger Woods early round charge and pile up some Vettel like deltas.  Run each stage as a team time trial, courtesy and tradition be damned.

We’re not likely to see anything that decisive but you pay a penalty for early inattention and end up trying to force results in less favorable circumstances.  This stage has 5 category 4 climbs and 2 point awards.

General Classification

Place Rider Team Time/Delta
1 CANCELLARA Fabian RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 07:13
2 WIGGINS Bradley SKY PROCYCLING +00:07
3 CHAVANEL Sylvain OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP +00:07
4 VAN GARDEREN Tejay BMC RACING TEAM +00:10
5 BOASSON HAGEN Edvald SKY PROCYCLING +00:11
6 LANCASTER Brett Daniel ORICA GREENEDGE +00:11
7 GRETSCH Patrick TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO +00:12
8 MENCHOV Denis KATUSHA TEAM +00:13
9 GILBERT Philippe BMC RACING TEAM +00:13
10 GRIVKO Andriy ASTANA PRO TEAM +00:15

Coverage is customarily on Vs. (NBC Sports) starting at 8 am with repeats at noon, 2, 8, and 10 pm as well as 1 am.  NBC recap at 4 pm.  There will be some streaming evidently, but not all of it is free.

Also today coverage of the America’s Cup World Series from Newport and the European Cup Final.

Sites of Interest-

The Stars Hollow Gazette Tags-

Pretty tables-

Points

Place Rider Team Points
1 CANCELLARA Fabian RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 20
2 WIGGINS Bradley SKY PROCYCLING 17
3 CHAVANEL Sylvain OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP 15
4 VAN GARDEREN Tejay BMC RACING TEAM 13
5 BOASSON HAGEN Edvald SKY PROCYCLING 11
6 LANCASTER Brett Daniel ORICA GREENEDGE 10
7 GRETSCH Patrick TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO 9
8 MENCHOV Denis KATUSHA TEAM 8
9 GILBERT Philippe BMC RACING TEAM 7
10 GRIVKO Andriy ASTANA PRO TEAM 6
11 FROOME Christopher SKY PROCYCLING 5
12 VELITS Peter OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP 4
13 EVANS Cadel BMC RACING TEAM 3
14 NIBALI Vincenzo LIQUIGAS-CANNONDALE 2
15 HESJEDAL Ryder GARMIN-SHARP-BARRACUDA 1

Team

Place Team Time/Delta
1 SKY PROCYCLING 22:13
2 RADIOSHACK-NISSAN +00:04
3 BMC RACING TEAM +00:06
4 OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP +00:13
5 ORICA GREENEDGE +00:19
6 GARMIN-SHARP-BARRACUDA +00:23
7 TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO +00:26
8 ASTANA PRO TEAM +00:29
9 LIQUIGAS-CANNONDALE +00:30
10 FDJ-BIGMAT +00:33
11 VACANSOLEIL-DCM +00:33
12 TEAM SAXO BANK-TINKOFF BANK +00:34
13 MOVISTAR TEAM +00:37
14 LOTTO-BELISOL TEAM +00:37
15 RABOBANK CYCLING TEAM +00:38
16 KATUSHA TEAM +00:38
17 AG2R LA MONDIALE +00:42
18 SAUR-SOJASUN +00:52
19 EUSKALTEL – EUSKADI +00:57
20 COFIDIS LE CREDIT EN LIGNE +00:58
21 LAMPRE – ISD +01:07
22 TEAM EUROPCAR +01:13

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  10. TMC

    Stage 1 begins in Liège, Belgium where the Prologue took place yesterday. Liège is is situated in the valley of the Meuse River, near Belgium’s eastern borders with the Netherlands and Germany, where the Meuse meets the Ourthe. It is in the former sillon industriel, the industrial backbone of Wallonia. int the 8th century the Emperor Charlemagne  was born in Liège.

    The Main Sights

    * The 16th century palace of the Prince-Bishops of Liège is built on the Place St Lambert, where the old St. Lambert’s Cathedral used to stand before the French Revolution. An archeological display, the Archeoforum, can be visited under the Place St Lambert.

    * The perron on the nearby Place du Marché was once the symbol of justice in the Prince-Bishopric and is now the symbol of the city. It stands in front of the 17th century city hall.

    * The present Liège Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Paul, contains a treasury and Saint Lambert’s tomb. It is one of the original seven collegiate churches, which include the German-Romanesque St Bartholomew’s Church (Saint Barthélémy) and the church of St Martin.

    * The church of Saint-James (Saint-Jacques) is probably the most beautiful medieval church in Liège. It is built in the so-called Flamboyant-Gothic style, while the porch is early Renaissance. The statues are by Liège sculptor Jean Del Cour. Saint-Jacques also contains 29 spectacular 14th century misericords.

    * The main museums in Liège are: MAMAC (Museum of Modern & Contemporary Art), Museum of Walloon Life, and Museum of Walloon Art & Religious Art (Mosan art). The Curtius Museum is an elegantly furnished mansion from the 17th century along the Meuse River, due to reopen in March 2009 as the expanded Grand Curtius museum housing the collections of the archaeology, decorative arts, religious art and Mosan art museums.

    * Other sites of interest include the historical city centre (the Carré), the Hors-Château area, the Outremeuse area, the parks and boulevards along the Meuse river, the Citadel, the 400 steps stairway “Montagne de Bueren”, leading from Hors-Château to the Citadel, ‘Médiacité’ shopping mall designed by Ron Arad Architects and the Liège-Guillemins railway station designed by Santiago Calatrava.

    The race ends 198 km later in Seraing, Belgium. The municipality of Seraing includes the old communes of Boncelles, Jemeppe-sur-Meuse, and Ougrée. With Liège, Herstal, Saint-Nicolas, Ans, and Flémalle it forms the greater Liège agglomeration (600,000 inhabitants). To the south of Seraing are the Condroz, followed by the Ardennes region.

    In addition to its steel factories, Seraing counts a famous crystal manufacture at Val Saint Lambert, which has been operating on the site of an old Cistercian abbey since 1826. The site of the Arcelor steel company, previously known as Cockerill-Sambre, is the former summer residence of the prince-bishops of Liège.

    * The Val Saint Lambert site includes the old abbey and the crystal manufacture, where glass workers still blow, carve, and etch the world-famous pieces of art. The neighbouring castle houses a glass museum.

    * The Cockerill castle used to be the summer residence of the prince-bishops of Liège, then a hospital under Napoleon, a powder magazine, and the personal property of William I of the Netherlands, who ceded it to the Cockerill family in 1817.

    * Besides the Cockerill castle, the historic centre of the city also includes the city hall and the main church, which harbours 12th-century baptismal fonts.

    * The forested region south of Seraing offers a multitude of strolls and hikes.

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