Georgia st 3: Landis turns it on

Phonak's Floyd Landis, Lance Armstrong's former US Postal team-mate, put his old boss in the shade o

Phonak's Floyd Landis, Lance Armstrong's former US Postal team-mate, put his old boss in the shade o
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM The mood of the large crowd who had gathered in Rome, Georgia, to watch Lance Armstrong finish ninth in the Tour de Georgia's stage three time trial was only lifted by the fact that it was an all-American podium as Floyd Landis (Phonak) beat CSC's Dave Zabriskie and Chris Baldwin (Navigators) to take over the leader's yellow jersey from team-mate Robert Hunter. At first, Landis and Zabriskie, both team-mates with Armstrong at US Postal (now Discovery Channel) last season, were lost for words when asked at the post-race press conference how it felt to beat the six-time Tour de France winner. Eventually, Landis, grinning, quipped: "Trying to win today obviously wasn't a major focus for Lance - compared to the Tour de France - but it was fun to beat him, and we won't rib him about it too much." The hilly 29.9km course had become very slippery soon into the race, and the rain continued until just after last-man-off Hunter came home. Despite a few fallers, all the big-name contenders stayed upright on what was a very tough course, with Bobby Julich (CSC) and Gerolsteiner's Levi Leipheimer - another former team-mate of Armstrong - finishing fourth and sixth, at 28 and 50 seconds respectively, behind Landis. "The idea for me was to see how the first half of my ride went, and then take any necessary risks," Landis explained, "but seeing as I was doing okay, I didn't need to take any - it would have been senseless. "The fans here today were very supportive," Landis added. "It's as good here as anywhere in the world." Still, there was an air of disappointment among the spectators that Armstrong was unable to repeat his victory on the same time trial course at last year's race, coming home 1-46 down on Landis. Having also been beaten by Discovery team-mates Tom Danielson and Viatcheslav Ekimov - and now behind them in the general classification - Armstrong may now give up any hope of defending his Tour de Georgia title and let Danielson, with two tough days of climbing to come, take on the role of leader. Stage three, Rome individual time trial 1 Floyd Landis (USA) Phonak 29.9km in 39.58 2 David Zabriskie (USA) CSC 0.19 3 Chris Baldwin (USA) Navigators 0.22 4 Bobby Julich (USA) CSC 0.28 5 Nathan O'Neill (Aus) Navigators 0.43 6 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner 0.50 7 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 1.00 8 Viatcheslav Ekimov (Rus) Discovery Channel 1.21 9 Lance Armstrong (USA) Discovery Channel 1.46 10 Brian Vandborg (Den) CSC 1.47 General classification 1 Floyd Landis (USA) Phonak 11.14.19 2 David Zabriskie (USA) CSC 0.19 3 Chris Baldwin (USA) Navigators 0.22 4 Bobby Julich (USA) CSC 0.28 5 Nathan O'Neill (Aus) Navigators 0.43 6 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner 0.50 7 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 1.00 8 Viatcheslav Ekimov (Rus) Discovery Channel 1.21 9 Lance Armstrong (USA) Discovery Channel 1.42 10 Brian Vandborg (Den) CSC 1.47
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