Tour de France Update

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With two weeks to go in the 2007 Tour de France, two of Oakley’s Spanish riders, Iban Mayo of Saunier Duval and Alejandro Valverde of Caisse d’Epargne, are only 2:39 and 2:51 behind the overall leader, Denmark’s Michael Rasmussen. Oakley’s Cadel Evans of Predictor-Lotto is also within three minutes.

Rasmussen was part of a breakaway halfway through the 165km eighth stage. Oakley’s T-Mobile leader Michael Rogers was in the same group as Rasmussen – and the race leader on the road – on the descent of the Cormet de Roseland when he hit a roadside barrier. He bravely carried on before being forced to pull up later with a dislocated shoulder.

"It’s a real shame because I could see the yellow jersey," said Rogers. “One moment I was in the lead, the next I was lying on the ground with my back wheel where my front wheel should have been."

Fellow Oakley rider Stuart O’Grady was taken to hospital after a crash on the same descent as Rogers. X-rays showed that O’Grady suffered fractures to five of his front ribs, three in his back lower ribs, a punctured lung and a fracture shoulder.

French champion and Oakley rider Christophe Moreau was rewarded for a day of attacks on the big names with fourth place on the stage, moving up to seventh overall. He finished in a group with overall contenders Cadel Evans and Frank Schleck, just behind Spain’s Alejandro Valverde.

Vinokourov, still in pain after a crash on Thursday, was unable to go with those men as they chased Moreau and finished 4:29 behind the leader. Vinokourov, now 22nd in the overall standings, believes he can still win the title even though he trails Rasmussen by 5:23. "The Tour is not lost,” he said. “If I had lost five minutes, it would have been over," he said.

Oakley TDF Stats:

  • 7 Days of Yellow Jersey for Fabian Cancellara.
  • 4 Stage victories: Cancellara 2, Mc Ewen and Hushovd.
  • 2 days on Polka dot jersey (best climber) for David Millar.
  • 1 day on Green jersey for Robbie Mc Ewen.
  • 7 days on White Jersey for Vladimir Gusev.
  • 9 Oakley riders placed in Top 15 of general classification