Tour de France: Cancellara wins 7.9 km time trial prologue
Saturday, July 7, 2007
At least half a million onlookers turned out to line the route as the Tour de France Prologue closed the streets of Central London for a day. Setting off at one minute intervals the 180 plus riders took less than ten minutes to speed past some of London's most memorable landmarks. With the eventual winner World time-trial champion Fabian Cancellara completing the 7.9 kilometre individual time trial in 8 minutes 50 seconds.
The Tour had to compete with more familiar sporting events, the British Grand Prix, the closing stages of Wimbledon and with the Live Earth concerts for the heart's of the British public. However some say as many as a million turned out for the Gallic extravaganza; the party atmosphere aided by a turn in the weather, the sun coming out for the first time all summer.
Run on the second anniversary of the 2005 terrorist attacks and at a time of heightened security, policing was successfully discrete the most visible police presence, by way of their novelty being, 45 members of the Gendarme Nationale.
Coming to England for the first time since 1994 fans new and old had the course of the day and the three hours of the trials to familiarise themselves with the French institution. The initial good natured cheering on of every rider, growing into real excitement as the shape of the race emerged. At the end of the day the standings were:
|1||Fabian Cancellara||Switzerland||Team CSC||8'50"|
|2||Andréas Klöden||Germany||Astana Team||13"|
|3||George Hincapie||USA||Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team||23"|
|4||Bradley Wiggins||Great Britain||Cofidis||23"|
|5||Vladimir Gusev||Russia||Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team||25"|
|6||Vladimir Karpets||Russia||Caisse d'Epargne||26"|
|7||Alexandre Vinokourov||Kazakhstan||Astana Team||30"|
|10||Benoît Vaugrenard||France||Française des Jeux||32"|
- AP. "Swiss rider Cancellara wins prologue in London debut of Tour de France" — , July 7, 2007
- "Crowds pack in for Tour de France" — , July 7, 2007
- "Tour de France 2007" — , July 7, 2007
- "Fans flock to Tour de France race" — , July 7, 2007
- "Tour de France 2007 – Stage by Stage Guide" — , July 7, 2007
- Tour de France - official website of the race
- Tour de France London - official 'Le Grand Depart' website by the City of London