Dennis Menchov: “It’s too early to talk about the overall classification”
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Sunday, July 08, 2012

Dennis Menchov: “It’s too early to talk about the overall classification”

by Ben Atkins at 2:38 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
 
Russian moves up to fourth overall as the first long time trial approaches

denis menchovDenis Menchov (Katusha) was happy with the result of the eighth stage of the Tour de France, between Belfort and Porrentruy, Switzerland, where he finished eighth, in the same time as race leader Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky). The Russian Giro d’Italia, and two-time Vuelta a España winner, who finished third in 2008, and second in the 2010 edition of the Tour - after the eventual disqualification of original winner Alberto Contador - has now lifted himself to fourth overall.

"The last climb was a really hard one but I passed it without big problems,” said the Russian after the stage “I had  good feelings from my body and legs, so I was pretty confident in myself.  I  knew that staying the front group would be crucial for the general  classification,  so I stayed there.

“The downhill was not very dangerous and technical, and I didn’t have any problems,” he continued. “In the finale the leaders’  group decided to hold very high speed to take some time from other rivals, we  collaborated well.”

Menchov was one of the last to be dropped by the relentless pace set on the previous day’s final climb to la Planche des Belles Filles, but eventually conceded 48 seconds to Wiggins at the finish. This accounts for all but six of his 54 second overall deficit to the British rider but, with time trialling one of the Russian’s specialities he will hope to perform well in tomorrow’s 41.5km against the clock, between Arc-et-Senans and Besançon.

“So, I am satisfied with today's result  and how I passed the first mountain stages,” he said. “Tomorrow there will be the first crucial time trial after the prologue, we'll see what we can do.  I moved  to fourth in the overall classification, but at the moment I don't care about it. We have still two weeks, so its too early to speak about that.”

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