Sunday, July 6, 2008


NORWEGIAN POWER. After over 100 miles of undulating Brittany terrain and a breakaway--involving Frenchman Thomas Voekler for the second straight day--that almost succeeded, Norwegian sprint specialist Thor Hushovd outkicked Luxembourg's Kim Kirchen at the finish line to win Stage 2.

SPRINTERS EMERGING. What a great name: Thor! It's almost as if, with a name like that, you've got a psychological edge on the competition. Hushovd had the edge today, just like he's had in five other Tour de France stages in previous years. Kirchen finished just a nose behind Hushovd, but the Luxembourger took over the Green Jersey as the sprint leader. Watch for Hushovd, Kirchen and Australian Robbie McEwen to compete for the Green Jersey throughout the tour. Sprinters will likely dominate the first week of racing.

VOEKLER PUSHING IT. Thomas Voekler is making a habit of breaking away. The Frenchman stayed away most of yesterday and today. Though he and his compatriots were eventually reeled in, Voekler's efforts have garnered him a commanding lead in the "King of the Mountains" competition. He'll wear the Polka-dot Jersey for the second day in a row when the cyclists line up on Monday. He may be noted well as the most combative, too.

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