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Vandendert Shows His Promise With Stage Win
17 Jul, 2011
The last Pyrenean stage was by far the hardest. The 168.5 km from Saint-Gaudens to Plateau de Beille. included Col de Portet d'Aspet (2nd cat.), Col de la Core (1st cat.), col de Latrape (2nd cat.), col d'Agnes (1st cat.), Port de Lers (3rd cat.) and t he ascent to Plateau de Beille (out of cat.).

In spite of the heavy programme, a 24-wheel break took off after several attacks. They passed Portet-d'Aspet and col de la Core together, where the gap with the peloton reached 7'.

When the gap reached 9', the much thinned out peloton reacted, and the leaders had only 2'30" left at the foot of Plateau de Beille.

Sandy Casar attacked alone from the break, while the group of favourites caught progressively the other escapers. Within that group, our Jelle Vanendert impressed by his prompt reactions to all accelerations, before to take off on his own with 7 km to go.

Jelle Vandendert passed Casar easily and increased the gap progressively. Olympic champion Samuel Sanchez chased alone, without getting any chance to grab the bouquet. Jelle made it to the finish, gaining his first succes ever as a professional rider !

And what a success, a mountain stage at, Tour de France, the third thus year for the Omega Pharma Lotto team. Vandendert is the new leader of the KOM classification, he will begin the last week wearing the polka dot jersey.

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