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Classic Haribo

February 20, 2006 – Here are the results from yesterday’s 203km Classic Haribo in France.

Results:

1 Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Cofidis 5.28.16 (37.103 km/h)
2 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Crédit Agricole
3 Mauro Facci (Ita) Barloworld 0.32
4 Kevin Van Impe (Bel) Quick.Step
5 Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank
6 Leon Van Bon (Ned) Davitamon-Lotto
7 Saïd Haddou (Fra) Auber 93
8 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) Crédit Agricole
9 James Vanlanschoot (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
10 Gorik Gardeyn (Bel) Unibet.com





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Classic Haribo

February 22, 2004 – Today's eleventh edition of the Classic Haribo lived up to its reputation as a sprinter's event as approximately 70 riders made it to the finish line in Marseille for a field sprint. The prelude to the bunch kick wasn't just a leisurely Sunday ride of 204Km, but a fast-paced game of cat-and-mouse run over the wet roads of southern France. With heavy rains again the order of the day, it would be a challenge for the riders just to make it all the way to the finish line. At least it was warmer than the miserable conditions of the previous day, at 11 Celsius..

The field of 194 racers from 25 teams left the Haribo candy factory in Uzes at 11:00 AM for the trek to Marseille. Although there was no definitive early action, by the time the riders had reach the 50Km mark the speed of the race was already 5-minutes ahead of the fastest anticipated time schedule. The first major attack of the day occurred at kilometer-74 when a group of three escaped the flying peloton. Up the road were three riders; Alexandr Arekeev (Acqua & Sapone), Nicolas Jalabert (Phonak) and Dmitriy Fofonov (Cofidis), the 2nd place finisher in yesterday's Haut Var event. By the time they reached the 100Km mark, their lead had increased to 6-minutes, but the field had now taken notice. At the 125Km point their lead had dropped to 3:10 and 2 chasers; Davide Bramati (Quick Step) and Bobbi Traksel (Rabobank) had begun to close in. The gap to the leaders, now only 2 (Jalabert and Fofonov), was coming down painfully slowly as the two chasers finally caught the duo in front, but with only a 1:20 advantage in front of the fast-moving peloton, at the 181Km mark.

Even though the leaders were now four, it only took the field another 13Km to finally reel in the escaped riders. Inside of the 15Km to go sign, the speed increased dramatically for the run-in to Marseille over the wet and slippery roads. The Navigators Insurance strategy for the day was fairly simple; get the sprinters to the finish as fresh as possible. Entering the city proper, the squad had Ciaran Power, Jeff Louder and Kirk O'Bee in the lead group. Jeff, after working for the team's fast-men all day, delivered Ciaran to the front of the peloton. Sensing a lull in the leading group as they traversed the tight, twisting and slippery corners approaching the finish, Jeff struck out on his own about 2.5Km from the finish line and quickly gained a gap on the field. Driving toward the finish, he was absorbed on the final hill just before the final kilometer. In the final crash-marred rush, Thor Hushovd (Credit Agricole) took the victory ahead of Gabriele Balducci (Saeco) and Sébastien Hinault (Credit Agricole).  Navigators' Ciaran Power came in at about 15th. The team now takes a short, much needed break, before heading to Switzerland next weekend for the GP Chiasso and GP di Lugano.





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