The 2010 Tour de France is in its first off-day today. After the 2010 Tour de France Stage 8 results, it is a good time for the 2010 Tour to take a break. Yesterday’s race in the Alps was a game-changer, although the game went very badly for Lance Armstrong. Three crashes and a big deficit led Armstrong to conclude that he was finished this year. Although he will keep riding until the end, he is no threat to win the yellow jersey anymore. This made the 2010 Tour de France Stage 8 results a big finish for the first act of the race.
After eight stages, the race is not led by Armstrong or Alberto Contador, which isn’t a huge surprise. Instead, Australian world champion Cadel Evans took the lead for the first time. He is up by 20 seconds over Stage 8 winner Andy Schleck, although Contador is right behind in third place, over a minute back.
The 2010 Tour de France results thus far have gone according to plan for Contador. He avoided any setbacks, and is in a prime position to take over at the Pyrenees. Evans hopes to hold him off for a while longer, although he still must be considered an underdog.
Contador avoided the hard luck of Armstrong, whose 2010 Tour de France went south after a promising start. He exceeded expectations at the opening time trials, although a flat tire in Stage 4 knocked him back. Armstrong hoped to recover at the Alps, but yesterday’s Stage 8 results destroyed him.
From this point on, Armstrong’s goals are just to help his team, and to perhaps win a final stage or two. But, the 2010 Tour de France results will not give Armstrong one last yellow jersey. Since this has already been decided in the first week, it eliminates a key subplot for the Tour early on.
With the second week of the race beginning tomorrow, it will need to focus on other things besides Armstrong vs. Contador. It appears the route is clear for Contador to take command again, although he doesn’t need to do so until the weekend. Until then, he must avoid any crashes and pitfalls, as he did in the first week.
The opening act of the 2010 Tour de France had Fabian Cancellara, Sylvain Chavanel, Mark Cavendish and Thor Hushovd leading the way. Now, Evans, Schleck and Contador have the inside track, with Cancellara and Chavanel out of the running, and Hushovd and Cavendish battling for green.
Tomorrow, the 2010 Tour de France Stage 9 will start the second stage of action. After the wild action of the weekend, things are due to settle down before the next big push.
Yahoo Sport- “Overall Time Standing: Stage 08”
Associated Press- “Tour de France shaping up as 3-way scrap”