Freire impresses again at Tirreno

Despite being blocked with 500m left, Oscar Freire still manages to win for a second day running at

Despite being blocked with 500m left, Oscar Freire still manages to win for a second day running at
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM For the second day running Oscar Freire timed his final run to the line to perfection to win the day at Tirreno-Adriatico. As on stage two when he swept by the leading riders with obvious ease, Freire looked to be in a different class as he countered late attacks from Laurent Brochard and Emanuele Sella. The stage win and some intermediate sprint bonuses took Freire 11 seconds clear of stage one winner Alessandro Petacchi overall. There were frequent breakaway attempts during the second half of the stage after an untypically quiet start to the day. No doubt Freire's superlative display on stage two and the thought that the Spaniard had won this stage last year provided some motivation to get clear. However, the Spaniard's Rabobank team kept the race together going into a final finishing circuit. With Petacchi still at the front of the race his Fassa Bortolo team also helped to close down breaks late on, but the Italian sprinter was unable to respond in anything like the same way as Freire when Brochard and Sella jumped away in the final kilometre. So far, at least, it looks like advantage the world champion with Milan-San Remo now just a week away. Freire revealed after the stage that he had been boxed in with 500 metres to go, and had to break suddenly before unleashing his final sprint. "Fabrizio Guidi left some room, and I managed to get up to Brochard and win the stage. I felt really in good shape today," said the world champion. He played down expectations for San Remo, though. "Yesterday and today's wins mean nothing as far as San Remo is concerned because the finish is completely different there. The favourites for that race are here, it's true, but that doesn't mean I'm anywhere near certain of victory." Freire also criticised the apparent lack of interest in him back in his homeland. "I've always ridden well in Tirreno but it upsets me to see that there is not a single Spanish journalist here. Perhaps it is because I ride for a foreign team, but even so I am still the world champion. The Tour and the Vuelta aren't the only races on the calendar." Stage 3, Tivoli-Torricella Sicura 1 Oscar Freire (Spa) Rabobank 228km in 5.52.07 (38.85 km/h) 2 Laurent Brochard (Fra) Bouygues Telecom 3 Danilo Hondo (Ger) Gerolsteiner 4 Emanuele Sella (Ita) Panaria 5 Mirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Domina Vacanze 6 George Hincapie (USA) Discovery Channel 7 Ruggero Marzoli (Ita) Acqua e Sapone 8 Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Fassa Bortolo 9 Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Gerolsteiner 10 Fabrizio Guidi (Ita) Phonak 21 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Cofidis 48 Matthew White (Aus) Cofidis 0.21 72 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Quick Step 1.20 80 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto 81 Roger Hammond (GB) Discovery Channel 95 Baden Cooke (Aus) Franaise des Jeux 2.01 114 Ivan Basso (Ita) CSC 3.55 118 Andreas Klden (Ger) T-Mobile 132 Michael Barry (Can) Discovery Channel 4.47 136 Julian Dean (NZ) Crdit Agricole 5.24 141 Frank Hoj (Den) Gerolsteiner 9.21 153 Joseba Beloki (Spa) Liberty Seguros 10.31 164 Matt Wilson (Aus) Franaise des Jeux 166 Mark Renshaw (Aus) Franaise des Jeux 171 Brad McGee (Aus) Franaise des Jeux 179 Chris Horner (USA) Saunier Duval 13.14 Overall 1 Oscar Freire (Spa) Rabobank 15.02.55 2 Petacchi 0.11 3 Brochard 0.13 4 Hondo 0.16 5 Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) Liberty Seguros 0.17 6 Guidi 0.19 7 Wegmann 0.21 8 Marcus Zberg (Swi) Gerolsteiner 9 O'Grady 0.23 10 Hincapie 55 White 1.36 70 McEwen 2.31 73 Hammond 2.35 98 Cooke 4.34 100 Bettini 4.46 101 Basso 5.10 106 Barry 5.52 121 Dean 7.57 124 Klden 8.23 133 Renshaw 11.46 145 Horner 14.29 150 Wilson 14.59 152 McGee 168 Hoj 23.23
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