20 July, 2009

The Hincapie Near Miss Two Days Later

I was wrong in expecting Hincapie to concede at least five minutes on the road to Verbier. He conceded four and change.

Since there's still lots of buzz about George's near miss, here are a few extra thoughts. While Astana certainly kept the race close enough so that AG2R could pull Nocentini back into yellow, and Armstrong has basically admitted as much, it appears that Astana thought they gave George enough time, and even AG2R thought Nocentini was going to lose the jersey. With Astana, they talk about how they couldn't give someone 12 minutes at the Tour and Armstrong talked about the year they mistakenly gave 35 minutes to a breakaway in 2002. And then look at the actions of Nicholas Roche from AG2R. That team could have told Roche to drop out of the break and return to the field, but they didn't. And Roche was attacking in the final kilometers of the race, which helped speed up the breakaway. If the team thought Roche was pulling George into yellow, they would have told him to sit on.

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