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In the first race of truth at this years Tour de France, German Stefan Schumacher surprised all and rode the TT of his life for a stage win. A 29.5 km somewhat hilly, but testing course around Cholet. Surprised by the win himself Schumacher had this to say after the stage, ""No, no, I am not a specialist in the sprint. I have no chance against someone like McEwen. Short climbs are my speciality. I won the Amstel Gold race that way."

Race favorite Alejandro Valverde who lost the yellow jersey yesterday showed signs of fatigue by coming in 1min 7secs behind his closest rival for the tour win, Australian, Cadel Evans. Evans came in just 27" seconds behind Schumacher.

Stage Results
1 Stefan Schumacher (Ger) Gerolsteiner - 35.44 (49.534 km/h)
2 Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - 0.18
3 David Millar (GBr) Team Garmin-Chipotle p/b H30
4 Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto - 0.27
5 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team CSC - Saxo Bank - 0.33
6 Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank - 0.34
7 Jens Voigt (Ger) Team CSC - Saxo Bank - 0.35
8 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Team Garmin-Chipotle p/b H30 - 0.37
9 George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - 0.41
10 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas - 0.47



General Classification after Stage 4

1. Stefan Schumacher (Ger) Gerolsteiner -14.04.41
2. Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - 0.12
3. David Millar (GBr) Team Garmin-Chipotle p/b H30
4. Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto - 0.21
5. Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team CSC - Saxo Bank - 0.33
6. Christian Vande Velde (USA) Team Garmin-Chipotle p/b H30 -0.37
7. George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - 0.41
8. Thomas Lövkvist (Swe) Team Columbia - 0.47
9. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas - 0.58
10. José Iván Gutierrez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne - 1.01

Full results here..


Jersey Standings:
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Stefan Schumacher
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Kim Kichen
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Thomas Voeckler
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Thomas Lövkvist

Links to news sites...

"Schumacher wins Tour time trial, grabs lead
By NAOMI KOPPEL

CHOLET, France (AP) - Germany's Stefan Schumacher surged to the overall lead in the Tour de France on Tuesday by winning the first individual time trial of the three-week race.

He completed the 18.3 miles in 35 minutes, 44 seconds, ahead of Kim Kirchen of Luxembourg and David Millar of Britain. Time-trial world champion Fabian Cancellara of Switzerland struggled and finished fifth." Read more from The Associated Press...

"Evans above Valverde as Schumacher takes yellow jersey

CHOLET, France (AFP) - Australia's Cadel Evans struck a first blow to Alejandro Valverde at the Tour de France here Tuesday after leaving his yellow jersey rival trailing on the fourth stage time trial.

Germany's Stefan Schumacher of the Gerolsteiner team stunned the pre-race favourites to win the 29.5km race against the clock in a time of 35min 44sec." Read more from AFP...

"Schumacher wins the stage 4 time trial and takes the yellow
By VeloNews.com

Stefan Schumacher (Gerolsteiner) rode to a dominant - if surprising - victory in stage 4 of the Tour de France on Tuesday, taking the yellow jersey from overnight leader Romain Feillu (Agritubel).

The German posted the fastest time by far in the 29.5km individual time trial, 35:44, some 18 seconds faster than green-jersey Kim Kirchen (Team Columbia) and David Millar (Garmin-Chipotle), and a further nine seconds quicker than overall contender Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto)." Read more from VeloNews.com...

"Schumacher doubles up with stage and yellow

Stefan Schumacher stunned all the big time trial favourites to win the 30-kilometre race against the clock in Cholet. Taking advantage of favourable weather conditions, the Gerolsteiner rider bested Team Columbia's Kim Kirchen and David Millar (Garmin-Chipotle) by 18 seconds." Read more from CyclingNews.com...