Arvesen benefits from Voigt's 'gift'
Saturday, August 7, 2004 11.00pm
A CSC rider did win the Tour of Denmark as expected, but it was not Jens Voigt but Kurt Asle Arvesen
PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE CSC rider Kurt Asle Arvesen took the victory in the Tour of Denmark on Sunday, when he won the first bonus sprint on the final stage of the race, and consequently overtook his team-mate Jens Voigt by two seconds on the GC. In most teams that would have spelled trouble, but not in this case. In fact, it was Voigt's idea that the team work for Arvesen to take the victory in the bonus sprint and subsequently the race, because he felt Arvesen deserved it. "Kurt has helped me and the team so much this year. I owe a lot of my victories to Kurt's work. This was an opportunity to thank him," explained Voigt, who had taken the yellow jersey by winning Friday's time trial. But leading by just one second Voigt had figured out a way to 'give' the victory to the Norwegian. "Emotionally this is the biggest thing I've ever experienced. Everybody in the team wanted me to win. We talked about it after the time trial and I'm deeply moved by this," said a joyous Arvesen who swapped podium places with Voigt after the final stage, with Cofidis' Stuart O'Grady taking third. However, pulling the stunt off had not been that easy. "It was hard work to make it happen. But the team rode super strong the whole way," said Arvesen, who has been riding impressively throughout the race. "My form has never been better. Coming out of the Tour de France I feel like the legs are going by themselves," said the 29 year old. For team manager Bjarne Riis it was yet another sign of the team spirit that he cherishes. "I fully supported Voigt's idea. Kurt has been doing a lot of work. He's a winner type himself, but he's also a true team player. Kurt is a beautiful winner who has fought for it all year long. It also goes to prove Jens' calibre as a person. This is how we want to be perceived. We're a team," said Riis. As usual the final stage to Frederiksberg in Copenhagen was decided in a bunch sprint with Stuart O'Grady working for team-mate Jimmy Casper. That plan also bore fruit, with the French rider winning ahead of stage five winner Tomas Vaitkus of Landbouwkrediet and O'Grady. Stage 6, August 8: Tastrup-Frederiksberg 1 Jimmy Casper (Fra) Cofidis 195km in 4.34.50 (42.57kph) 2 Tomas Vaitkus (Lit) Landbouwkrediet 3 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Cofidis 4 Giosue Bonomi (Ita) Saeco 5 Jeremy Hunt (GB) MrBookmaker.com 6 Max Van Heeswijk (Hol) US Postal 7 Gorik Gardeyn (Bel) Lotto-Domo 8 Fabrizio Guidi (Ita) CSC 9 Antonio Bucciero (Ita) Saeco 10 Andr Korff (Ger) T-Mobile Final overall standings 1 Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) CSC 20.58.01 2 Jens Voigt (Ger) CSC 0.02 3 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Cofidis 0.49 4 Brian Vandborg (Den) Post Danmark 0.59 5 Max Van Heeswijk (Hol) US Postal 1.07 6 Michael Barry (Can) US Postal 1.08 7 Joost Posthuma (Hol) Rabobank 1.14 8 Ellis Rastelli (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi 1.35 9 Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Bankgiroloterij 1.37 10 Victor Hugo Pe¤a (Col) US Postal 1.45
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