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Defending Deutschland Tour champion Levi Leipheimer won Sunday's fifth stage of the race, which was shortened due to bad weather. The American slipped away from a group containing what are likely to be the main contenders for the title on the run-in to the finish.
Before the stage riders had threatened not to race the mountainous stage when heavy rain and freezing temperatures descended on the Alpine roads leading towards the finish in Austria. Compromise was eventually reached when the race organisers agreed to cut the climb of the Kuhtai pass from the route, cutting about 30km off the stage distance.
A tough climb close to the finish was kept on the route, and it was here that CSC managed to cause notable damage, with Andy Schleck and I¤igo Cuesta pulling a group of about 10 riders clear, including team-mate Jens Voigt. When at attack came from Andrei Kashechkin close to the finish, Voigt and Leipheimer were among those able to respond, the American best of all as he went on to claim the stage. Voigt finished in a group three seconds down, and that was enough to give him the leader's jersey.
"Jens had a hard time keeping up when Leipheimer attacked, but he sat with [Vladimir] Gusev for a while, who ended up burning out all of a sudden, and then Jens bridged up to a couple of others, who were pursuing Leipheimer," explained CSC directeur Kim Andersen.
Stage 5, Bad Tlz-Seefeld
1 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Gerolsteiner 150km in 3.44.20
2 Andrei Kashechkin (Kaz) Astana 0.03
3 Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre
4 Jens Voigt (Ger) CSC
5 Leonardo Piepoli (Ita) Saunier Duval
6 Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Discovery Channel 0.17
7 I¤igo Cuesta (Spa) CSC 0.29
8 Andy Schleck (Lux) CSC 0.36
9 Eddy Mazzoleni (Ita) T-Mobile
10 Evgeni Petrov (Rus) Lampre
1 Jens Voigt (Ger) Team CSC 22.27.51
2 Gusev 0.03
3 Bruseghin 0.13
4 Leipheimer 0.18
5 Cuesta 0.25
6 Petrov 0.36
7 Piepoli 0.38
8 Mazzoleni 0.43
9 Kashechkin 0.49
10 Schleck 0.57
- After taking victory in Saturday's 15km time trial, Fabian Cancellara was confirmed as the winner of the Tour of Denmark in Copenhagen on Sunday. The final stage finished with a bunch sprint won by Gerolsteiner's Robert Forster. CSC finished with a 1-2 as Stuart O'Grady took second place overall.
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