More changes to Paris-Nice
Wednesday, March 9, 2005 12.00am
As expected, snow in the Massif Central has forced a rejig of Wednesday's Paris-Nice stage, and Thur
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM What the organisers of Paris-Nice wouldn't give now for some of the sun that gives their race its alternative title. After Tuesday's stage was shortened to 46.5km because of heavy snow, Wednesday's stage of 'the race to the sun' has gone the same way. The third stage is set to start in Thiers as planned, but will now cover just 118km to a new finish destination in Craponne sur Arzon instead of running the planned 180km to Chambon sur Lignon. Surprisingly given the weather conditions, the first-category Cote de Lavet climb has been retained on the shortened stage. "Due to snow we cannot go as far as Chambon sur Lignon," announced race organiser Jean-Franois Pescheux. "The weather conditions make it impossible to take the race there." Chambon is located at an altitude of 1,000 metres and can currently only be reached by vehicles equipped with snow chains. Despite Pescheux's initial hopes that Thursday's stage might be unaffected by the weather, this too is being rejigged. With start town Chambon sur Lignon out of reach, it is now likely that stage four will start somewhere in or around the city of Valence and finish in Montlimar.
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