Cruz takes Postal's 27th win

US Postal's long and victorious send-off from pro cycling continued at the Tour de l'Ain, where Anto

US Postal's long and victorious send-off from pro cycling continued at the Tour de l'Ain, where Anto
PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE While most of the local attention at the Tour de l'Ain was on Brioches La Boulangre and their team leader Jrome Pineau, US Postal gave another reminder of the strength in depth of their team as Antonio Cruz won the second stage of the four-day race in Oyonnax. Cruz's final surge for the line secured Postal's 27th win of what is their final season in the sport. Cruz took advantage of strong riding by team-mate Jos Azevedo and an ideal lead-out going into the final turn before he started his winning sprint. "In the finishing circuits, Azevedo was just lighting it up, and I had said to myself, I may need a bit of a head start on the circuits or he may drop me," said Cruz. "So I found myself in an eight-man break which turned out to be perfect. Jos then came ripping past us and I made the right move, jumping on his wheel. He, (Benjamin) Noval and (Daniel) Rincon came through and I sat with them and they kept hammering all the way down to the finish." This was Cruz's first win in Europe and it came with a measure of foresight. "It's funny, I was telling the guys that when I knew I was going to win, in an instant it all turned into slow motion. I was also looking ahead making sure nobody slipped away. There's nothing worse than posting up and having someone 20 metres ahead. When I saw I was clear, I was so happy." Third place on the stage was enough for stage one winner Pineau to remain the overall leader.
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