Petacchi opens up at Valencia

Alessandro Petacchi is an easy winner of the opening stage of the Tour of Valencia, but the lead goe

Alessandro Petacchi is an easy winner of the opening stage of the Tour of Valencia, but the lead goe
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM The first stage of the Tour of Valencia has gone much the same way as the Luis Puig Trophy at the weekend, with Alessandro Petacchi easily winning the sprint into Calpe. The Italian was so far ahead of the rest that the he was given a one-second advantage over the bunch, although this wasn't enough to give the Fassa Bortolo rider the race lead. That went to Saunier Duval's Tino Zaballa, thanks to bonuses he collected on the stage. Zaballa was in the thick of the action throughout the stage. The Spaniard initiated what proved to be the break of the day after 15km, and won two subsequent intermediate sprints and took the points on the day's first-category climb before the break he was in was pulled back at the 117km mark. Surprisingly, given all of the work he had already done during the stage, Zaballa was the closest to the currently peerless Petacchi, who now has five wins already this season. More news should follow on Magnus Backstedt and Michael Boogerd. The Swede did not start the race at all, while the Dutchman only lasted half a dozen kilometres before he abandoned. Tomorrow's stage is the longest of the five-day race, taking in 178km from Javea to Sagunto with just one second-cat climb on the way. Stage 1, Calpe-Calpe 1 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 150km in 3.46.43 (39.70kph) 2 Constantino Zaballa (Spa) Saunier Duval 0.01 3 Miguel Angel Perdiguero (Spa) Phonak 4 Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas 5 Antonio Colom (Spa) Illes Balears 6 Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Crdit Agricole 7 Marco Velo (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 8 Erik Zabel (Ger) T-Mobile 9 Ion Del Rio (Spa) Andalucia-Paul Versan 10 Thomas Dekker (Hol) Rabobank 42 Iban Mayo (Spa) Euskaltel 87 Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) T-Mobile 11.16 89 Andreas Kloeden (Ger) T-Mobile Overall 1 Constantino Zaballa (Spa) Saunier Duval-Prodir 3.46.32 2 Petacchi 0.01 3 Perdiguero 0.08 4 Koldo Gil (Spa) Liberty Seguros 0.10 5 Xabier Zandio (Spa) Illes Balears 0.11 6 Javier Cherro (Spa) Comunitat Valenciana 7 Pellizotti 0.12 8 Colom 9 Lequatre 10 Velo
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