P-Nice 1: Boonen swoops to conquer

Tom Boonen wins the opening stage of Paris-Nice and Erik Dekker grabs enough bonus seconds to sneak

Tom Boonen wins the opening stage of Paris-Nice and Erik Dekker grabs enough bonus seconds to sneak
PIC BY TDWSPORT.COM Tom Boonen (Quick Step) easily won the first road stage of Paris-Nice into Chabris this afternoon, beating Liquigas' Luciano Pagliarini and Crdit Agricole's Jaan Kirsipuu in the final sprint after being set up perfectly by his team-mates. CSC's Jens Voigt lost his overall lead as third-placed Erik Dekker gained three bonus seconds in intermediate sprints to edge ahead of the German. Any disappointment Voigt may have felt because of the loss of the leader's jersey was offset probably by the fact that he managed to stay with the front group when a big crash decimated the main peloton with about eight kilometres left. As a group of about 20 riders sped on towards the finish, several potential rivals to prologue winner Voigt fell away from contention. The two key names to be caught out were defending champion - and Voigt's former CSC team-mate - Jorg Jaksche and T-Mobile's Alexandre Vinokourov, winner of the two editions before Jaksche. Both finished 41 seconds down. The crash happened just after the second of two intermediate sprints. Two breakaway riders, Francaise des Jeux's Fabian Sanchez and Liberty Seguros' Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano, had managed to stay clear going through the sprint at Chabris with 12km left, with Erik Dekker leading the bunch through soon after. This gave Dekker the bonus second needed to take him ahead of Voigt after he had gained two seconds in the earlier sprint. Among those also held up in the mass pile-up on the finishing circuit were Davide Rebellin, Cadel Evans, Floyd Landis and Lance Armstrong. With Quick Step powering ahead on the front of the group for Boonen's benefit there was simply no way back to the leading pack for anyone who was delayed here. A crash earlier in the stage had forced the retirement of Phonak's Robert Hunter. By that point Britain's Bradley Wiggins was already on his way back home from the race to be with his wife at the birth of their first child. Stage 1, Etampes-Chabris 1 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step 186.5km in 4.19.15 (43.16kph) 2 Luciano Pagliarini (Bra) Liquigas 3 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) Crdit Agricole 4 Jimmy Casper (Fra) Cofidis 5 Steven de Jongh (Hol) Rabobank 6 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Illes Balears 7 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Franaise des Jeux 8 Guido Trenti (USA) Quick Step 9 Constantino Zaballa (Spa) Saunier Duval 10 Erik Dekker (Hol) Rabobank 15 Jens Voigt (Ger) CSC 19 Bobby Julich (USA) CSC 25 Aaron Kemps (Aus) Liberty Seguros 0.41 32 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Cofidis 39 Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) T-Mobile 44 Lance Armstrong (USA) Discovery Channel 46 Jorg Jaksche (Ger) Liberty Seguros 49 Thomas Lvkvist (Swe) Francaise des Jeux 63 Cadel Evans (Aus) Davitamon-Lotto 0.58 67 Michael Rogers (Aus) Quick Step 68 Davide Rebellin (Ita) Gerolsteiner 77 Thomas Dekker (Hol) Rabobank 104 David Zabriskie (USA) CSC 1.28 105 Ian McLeod (SA) Francaise des Jeux 120 Carlos Sastre (Spa) CSC 134 Tom Danielson (USA) Discovery Channel 137 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank 163 Charly Wegelius (GB) Liquigas 8.24 164 Fred Rodriguez (USA) Davitamon-Lotto Overall standings 1 Erik Dekker (Hol) Rabobank 4.24.30 2 Voigt 3 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Fassa Bortolo 0.02 4 Vladimir Goussev (Rus) CSC 0.03 5 Boonen 0.04 6 Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) CSC 0.07 7 Gilbert 8 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Bouygues Telecom 9 Bobby Julich (USA) CSC 10 Vicente Reynes (Spa) Illes Balears 0.09 14 Valverde 0.11 26 Chavanel 0.45 30 Vinokourov 0.48 32 Jaksche 0.49 33 Lvkvist 46 Kemps 0.58 56 Rogers 1.04 57 Thomas Dekker 59 Rebellin 1.06 61 Evans 70 Armstrong 1.08 79 Landis 1.12 100 Zabriskie 1.33 106 Danielson 1.41 114 Sastre 1.47 120 Hayman 1.49 140 McLeod 2.01 163 Wegelius 8.48 164 Rodriguez 9.25
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