Thursday 08 March 2012 at 21h46

Today one of the most important stages was on the programme in Paris-Nice 2012, between Onet-le-Château and Mende, with no less than 6 climbs of which 3 in the first category and a mountain top finish. Contrary to the highly expected stage victory for Alejandro Valverde, it was finally the Dutch rider Lieuwe Westra who won this stage and who gets very close to Bradley Wiggins who remains the leader in the general classifciation.

The summary of the 5th stage of Paris-Nice 2012: Onet-le-Château > Mende

This morning, just before 11.30AM, this 5th stage of Paris-Nice 2012 started in Onet-le-Château, for 178.5 kilometers towards Mende and its famous Montée Laurent Jalabert which is officially called the Côte de la Croix Neuve.
The only rider who didn't come to the start this morning was the Dutch man Tom Veelers of the Project 1t4i team.

Right from the start, David Le Lay (Saur-Sojasun, already in a breakaway in Monday's stage) attacked, followed by Simon Clarke (GreenEDGE), Frederik Veuchelen (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) and Yukiya Arashiro (Team Europcar). David Le LayThese 4 leading riders quite rapidly got permission from the peloton to give it a go and they thus arrive first on top of the first climb of the day, the Col d'Aujols. Frederik Veuchelen takes the points, ahead of Le Lay and Arashiro. The peloton already accuses a delay of no less than 6 minutes.

At kilometer 41, the gap gets to its maximum at 7 minutes. On the Côte de la Malène it drops back a little bit but it's still at 6'05" when the leading riders get on the top in the same order, just like when they get on the top of the Côte du Cayla at 67 kilometers from the finish.

Sandy CasarWhen Sandy Casar (FDJ BigMat) and Blel Kadri (AG2R La Mondiale) leave the race, because of health problems he already had since a few days for the first and because of repeated crashes for the latter, the gap is already dropping quickly and just before the Côte de l'Estrade two riders start a chase. Kevin Seeldrayers (Astana) and Laurens ten Dam (Rabobank) don't manage to catch the leading group before the top however and the 4 riders thus start the descent, again in exactly the same order. Seeldrayers and Ten Dam are 1'20" behind the 4 leaders, followed by the peloton 20 seconds later.
Frederik Veuchelen
Not really surprisingly, the Movistar team starts chasing behind the 6 riders and at the foot of the Côte de Chabrits the leading group's lead has dropped back to 50 seconds on the peloton. On this climb they are caught by the two chasing riders and on top, the order in which they start the descend is: Veuchelen, Arashiro and Ten Dam. Frederik Veuchelen finally gives it a try in a solo attack in the descent towards Mende but when he starts the final climb, the whole bunch gets back together.

Lieuwe WestraWhile several riders get in difficulties at the back of the peloton, the first rider to really attack is Arnold Jeannesson (FDJ BigMat), at 1 kilometer from the finish. He is taken back by the guy who's wearing the yellow jersey, Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky), who at his turn is being overtaken by Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) who goes on to win the stage. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) finishes 6 seconds later, just like Bradley Wiggins who takes the 3rd place.

The classifications of Paris-Nice 2012 after the 5th stage: Onet-le-Château > Mende

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The stage classification for Onet-le-Château > Mende

Lieuwe WestraThe top 10 of this stage is as follows:

1/ Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) - 4h52'46"
2/ Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) - +0'06"
3/ Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky)
4/ Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-QuickStep)
5/ Simon Spilak (Katusha Team)
6/ Damiano Cunego (Lampre-ISD) - +0'16"
7/ Arnold Jeannesson (FDJ BigMat)
8/ Sylvester Szmyd (Liquigas-Cannondale) - +0'24"
9/ Rigoberto Uran (Team Sky)
10/ Thomas Voeckler (Team Europcar) - +0'30

General classification

Bradley WigginsAfter this 5th stage, the general classification of Paris-Nice 2012 moves around a bit, especially with Lieuwe Westra getting very close to Bradley Wiggins, with a gap of only 6 seconds.

1/ Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) - 18h23'40"
2/ Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) - +0'06"
3/ Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) - +0'10"
4/ Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) - +0'18"
5/ Simon Spilak (Katusha Team) - +0'37"
6/ Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing Team) - +0'39"
7/ Maxime Monfort (Radioshack-Nissan) - +0'46"
8/ Arnold Jeannesson (FDJ BigMat) - +1'06"
9/ Sylvain Chavanel (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) - +1'16"
10/ Robert Kiserlovski (Astana) - +1'21"

Points classification

Alejandro ValverdeAlejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) still keeps the green jersey:

1/ Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) - 74 points
2/ Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) - 67 points
3/ Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) - 63 points
4/ Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) - 50 points
5/ Gianni Meersman (Lotto-Belisol Team) - 45 points

King of the Mountains classification

Frederik VeuchelenBy getting on top first on all climbs of the day, except for the final climb, the Belgian rider Frederik Veuchelen takes over the polka dot jersey from Luis Angel Maté (Cofidis):

1/ Frederik Veuchelen (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) - 36 points
2/ Luis Angel Maté Mardones (Cofidis, le crédit en ligne) - 20 points
3/ David Le Lay (Saur-Sojasun) - 20 points
4/ Yukiya Arashiro (Team Europcar) - 19 points
5/ Bart de Clercq (Lotto-Belisol Team) - 15 points

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Best young rider classification

Tejay van GarderenThe white jersey still stays on the shoulders of the American Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing Team):

1/ Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing Team) - 18h24'19"
2/ Rigoberto Uran (Team Sky) - +2'55"
3/ Davide Malacarne (Team Europcar) - +3'30"
4/ Dominik Nerz (Liquigas-Cannondale) - +5'41"
5/ Romain Sicard (Euskaltel-Euskadi) - +7'07"

door Thomas Vergouwen
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this publication is published in: Paris-Nice 2012 | Paris-Nice

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  1. http://www.les-actus-du-cyclisme.fr/article-paris-nice-2012-lieuwe-westra-colle-une-a-mende-a-tout-le-monde-101240404.html

    | Roland TISSIER | Friday 09 March 2012 om 10h34

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