Gold-Samuel Sanchez (Spain)
Silver-David Rebellin (Italy)
Bronze-Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland)
4th – Alexandr Kolobnev (Russia)
6:57pm: SANCHEZZ!!!!!!!! We told you he could sprint!!!!
6:56pm: Rogers is at the back. It looks like Kolobnev, Sanchez…
6:55pm: Cancellara is on the front 500m to go.
6:54pm: Cancellara swings off. Rogers is in good position. Schleck leads. Sanchez is sitting well.
6:54pm: Rogers is sitting well. 1km to go!
6:53pm: BOOM BOOM BOOM! Fabian Cancellara has just crossed the gap!!! He is a machine, I’ll put $100 on him thankyou very much.
6:52pm: This is an excellent race, everyone is putting there hearts on the line. Sanchez is gritting his teeth, could we see Michael Rogers win the Olympic Games?!
6:50pm: Rogers is coming back! They’re going to catch them!
6:48pm: By the way, Andy Schleck is riding with white hudz, you can purchase a pair from our sponsors on the right.
6:46pm: The front three are flying through the tunnels what a great photo —>
6:43pm: If anyone is listening to SBS’s coverage of the race, we wouldn’t be listening to Mike Turtur, Sammy Sanchez can sprint!
6:42pm: Rogers has now joined up with Kolobnev and they are now chasing the front three. There is still a large bunch chasing including Evans and Valverde.
6:41pm: Could it be a fairytale ending for Rebellin, whos birthday it is today?
6:39pm: The top 3 have broken away now, Schleck, Rebellin and Sanchez… who will win? 13km to go. They have 35 seconds on the Evans group.
6:38pm: Schleck puts in a huge attack after there was almost a crash in the front bunch. Rebellin is looking super strong and is following Schleck easily. It looks like Rogers is now in trouble.
6:37pm: Remember Kolobnev is an excellent rider with a great bunch kick. He finished 2nd to Paolo Bettini last year the Worlds.
6:35pm: Five riders away! Rogers, Rebellin, Kolobnev, Sanchez and Schleck.
6:32pm: Karpets gone, Leipheimer gone.
6:31pm: Andy Schleck attacks hard!! Big move, Rebelin responds along with Kolobnev.
6:30pm: Evans is working on the front, perhaps for Rogers who looks strong…
6:27pm: In the group: Evans, Sanchez, Vande Velde, Leipheimer, Schleck, Kolobnev, Aerts… Rogers has joined.
6:25pm: Bettini is gone! Sanchez is flying along with Vande Velde.
6:23pm: This is the race, attacks are seriously starting!
6:22pm: Cadel Evans has attacked! Could it be his day!? He is motoring.
6:21pm: Simon Gerrans looks in trouble, he is now struggling, but Llyod, Rogers and Evans are still looking strong.
6:20pm: One lap to go! Who will be the Olympic Champion for 2008?! 16 seconds is the gap.
6:12pm: We haven’t seen much of big George Hincapie from America, it must be said that if he were here in a small bunch that he may have a good chance of the win. He wants revenge after losing a stage in the Tour de France last month.
6:10pm: Simon Gerrans is sitting at the back of the peloton looking a bit tired, but he is still there! The town of Mannsfield in Victoria must be very proud.
6:07pm: Alberto Contador waves goodbye and finishes his race. There is another move that is taking place as we enter the tunnel. Evans is there.
6:05pm: Alberto Contador has popped! Job done. Spain are left with 3…
6:04pm: Pelizotti has attacked! Followed closely by Sammy Sanchez and David Rebellin. Perhaps he heard our birthday wishes!?
6:02pm: Nicki Sorenson has attacked, but Contador has hit the front to try and bring him back. For the first time today, we see David Rebellin, who we wish a happy birthday to!
6:00pm: Oh we forgot to mention that other slightly important rider riding for Valverde… a certain Alberto Contador.
5:58pm: Alejandro Valverde must be licking his lips knowing he has tour champion Carlos Sastre and Sammy Sanchez working for him. He must be the favourite now…
5:54pm: It looks as though the work horse of the day Vincenzo Nibali has pulled out of the race. He’s done his job very well and can now look forward to seeing if Paolo Bettini can finish off the job.
5:52pm: For the first time today the race is now all together.
5:50pm: Sastre is smoking now! Spain have seriously turned the heat up and there have been some big splits. Two French riders are out the back.
5:46pm: Sastre now leads Sanchez and Valverde. Following them is who else but Paolo Bettini. Also up to the front is Simon Gerrans, who is doing a truck load of work for Matt Lloyd and Michael Rogers.
5:42pm: Fabian Cancellara is riding behind the peloton, but only to get a drink bottle from the team car. He looks strong and could play an important role in the finish, could we see a repeat of Milan San Remo?
5:41pm: Van Summeren (Belgium), Thomas Lövkvist (Sweden) and Rigoberto Uran (Colombia) are the three riders away.
5:39pm: Sastre, Bettini and Valverde are riding together near the front. Will we see attacks this lap?
5:36pm: Johan Van Summeren from Belgium has attacked, his lanky figure is not hard to miss!
5:35pm: They are not getting away easily though as they ride through the tunnel. Contador looks very focused but now sits up.
5:33pm: The group is away and its very strong! Schleck, Wegmann, Pelizotti, Contador, Gerrans, Vande Velde!
5:32pm: The attacks have really started now. Pelizotti from Italy has started the move and there is now a group off the front. Schleck is there, Gerrans is there. O’Grady has been dropped.
5:28pm: Stefan Schumacher has been dropped from the main field, this is very unexpected after his excellent form at the Tour de France.
5:22pm: Bettini is back in the field after a very professional move by his team. Simon Gerrans is now riding hard on the front, he is on top form today.
5:21pm: Paolo Bettini has punctured!!! He has a large gap to bridge across to. Also, Cummins and Hammond from GB have retired.
5:20pm: Nibali is an animal!! He has brought back the breakaway and it is now Gruppo Compatto, apart from of course the two riders ahead.
5:19pm: Vladimir Efimkin has pulled of the race, that’s a surprise.
5:18pm: Ivanof is driving the peloton hard and as we speak, the whole Australian team has moved to the front end of the field. This is a smart and safe move for the Australians as the pace is really starting to heat up.
5:11pm: As we say that, the time to the peloton is now 1.10. It looks like they will be caught this lap or the next.
5:07pm: We have now entered the last three laps of the Olympic Games Road Race. The front group is actually putting time into the peloton. Carlos Sastre is still being closely marked by Simon Gerrans.
5:03pm: Steve Cummings (Great Britain) and Roger Hammond (Great Britain) are at the back but are still looking strong. Cummings is a well known pursuit on the track and Hammond is an excellent Classiscs rider.
4:56pm: As Nibali continues to ride hard, we see the first glimpses of Andy Schleck. He could be a threat for the race, remember how strong he was riding in the Tour? Nibali though was born near the Strait of Messina and his nickname is the “shark of the strait” or simply “the shark.” His first major win came at the 2006 GP Ouest-France, where he bested an impressive field on a tough course.
4:50pm: The gap to the two leaders is now 1.14! Could this be the end of the large group? Kim Kirchen is sitting at the back, wondering if this is the move of the day or should he wait.
4:39pm: Nibali of Italy is again riding on the front and is dropping alot of riders off the including Karsten Kroon (Netherlands) and Jason McCartney (USA). McCartney worked hard for the USA today and it doesn’t look like he will be coming back.
4:29pm: There is an attack in the leading group. Grivko is dropped! Sastre rides to the front as well as Gerrans. Two other riders are being dropped but will most likely rejoin the group. Another attack of two riders off the front group. Kuchysinski is one of the riders.
4:25pm: The two Ukranian riders in the breakaway are really putting in now and have the group lined out. Perhaps they are trying to set something up?
4:22pm: Only Russia and the USA are working on the front, no other teams are willing to help bring back the large breakaway.
4:16pm: 109km to go as Marzio Bruseghin of Italy finally moves up to the front.
4:13pm: Jonathan Bellis has now called in a day. An excellent ride from the young Brit.
4:12pm: Kim Kirchen is stocking up on energy gels from the team car. It looks as though he has about six in his back pocket, perhaps he is going to use that energy for a big attack later on?
4:06pm: Another one of our reader Noel Gibbs asks us if the road race is a ‘one off’ event resulting in medals. Well the answer is yes. The Olympic Games are a one day race, the same as a race such as Paris Roubaix or the World Championships and the first three riders home will get Gold, Silver and Bronze medals. At the last Olympics, Paolo Bettini, Sérgio Paulinho and Axel Mercx won those medals respectively.
3:57pm: After 126.4km and 3h30 of racing, the peloton is 5’10” back of the 27 leaders.
3:55pm: One of our readers from Australia has her money on Simon Gerrans, and for good reason. Simon is an excellent sprinter especially on a hilly race like this. Cast your mind back to the Bay criterium series where Gerrans usually rides exceptionally and he proved his sprinting/climbing prowess by winning a stage in the Tour de France this year.
3:50pm: Sastre is still riding strong on the front of the breakaway group. The riders are looking hot though, with many riding with their jerseys fully unzipped. Simon Gerrans is sitting at the back of the group but still looks comfortable.
3:43pm: Patricio Almonacid has now been caught and has gone to the back of the bunch for a rest. Well he made the early part of the race exciting for us so it was an excellent ride. The rest of the bunch is now going through the feed zone.
3:37pm: Niki Terpstra of the Netherlands has now pulled out of the race and headed off for an early shower.
3:33pm: Ryder Hesjedal is now riding on the front. The lanky Canadian has been somewhat of a revelation this year riding for Team Garmin Chipotle. Hesjedal is a time trial specialist and has won the Canadian National Championship in that event.
3:29pm: Sastre is riding in a high cadence on the climb and is looking strong. Voigt is also riding well, but then again, when doesn’t he?
3:25pm: Just an update of the current race situation.
Patricio Almonacid (Chile)
Group of 26 Jens Voigt (Germany), Carlos Sastre (Spain), Kim Kirchen (Luxembourg), Roman Kreuziger (Czech Republic), Marzio Bruseghin (Italy), Stef Clement (Netherlands), Jurgen Van den Broeck (Belgium), Simon Gerrans (Australia), Serguei Ivanov (Russia), Ryder Hesjedal (Canada), Jonathan Bellis (Great Britain), Raivis Belohvosciks (Latvia), Rémi Pauriol (France), Jan Valach (Slovakia), Fabian Cancellara (Switzerland), Vladimir Miholjevic (Croatia), Murilo Fischer (Brazil), Matija Kvasina (Croatia), Oscar Freire (Spain), Radoslav Rogina (Croatia), Borut Bozic (Slovenia), Gatis Smukulis (Latvia), Aleksandr Kuschynski (Belarus), Chris Anker Sorensen (Denmark), Vladimir Karpets (Russia), Horacio Gallardo (Bolivia) at 10.20
Peloton at 11.40
3:22pm: Stuart O’Grady and Cadel Evans are now riding very close to the front as they grab some food to eat. Both of these riders have the ability to win the race but will be marked by riders such as Alejandro Valverde and of course Paolo Bettini.
3:18pm: Could Kim Kirchen be the darkhorse for the day? We think so. His ability to sprint will come in handy in the final parts of the race and he has proved that he is very strong in one day races, especially in his win on the Mur de Huy earlier in the year.
3:15pm: Horacio Gallardo has now been caught by the large breakaway group and is not too worried, we think he will enjoy a break.
3:06pm: Patricio Almonacid is actually looking quite strong and has impressed our commentary team so far. Almonacid knows the course well and was seen training along the course two days before the race. He has 5 laps to go but will still most likely be caught.
3:03pm: Italy’s Marzio Bruseghin is looking strong and will be controlling the front group so that his team leader Paolo Bettini has a good chance for the win. Bruseghin’s best achievement is winning the 2006 Italian time-trial championship, as well as winning two time trial stages in the Giro d’Italia.
3:00pm: Unfortunately for our British readers, young Jonathan Bellis has been dropped from the lead group of 24. Bellis is one of many riders to have emerged with the British Olympic Academy Programme. After sucess in European track championships, he became Britain’s first medalist at the under-23 World Road Race Championship in 2008 in which he finished third.
2:58pm: The lead is now down to 7:10.
2:53pm: Vincenzo Nibali, who rides for the ProTour team of Liquigas, has been very active today and is obviously in excellent form. He rode the Tour de France strongly, holding the white jersey for a few days.
2:51pm: Nibali has attacked the main peloton!
2:42pm: The breakaway of 26 now rides through the finishing line, led by Simon Gerrans. The gap seems to be opening up over the peloton now.
2:40pm: Paolo Bettini has crashed, No that was a joke! Jackson Rodriguez of Venezuela was the victim but is back on his bike. He will have trouble chasing back on though.
2:39pm: Chute! Chute! Chute! A Crash!!
2:38pm: As we say that, Gallardo has been dropped on the climb.
2:35pm: The two leaders have just gone through the finish line for the first time. Still looking strong.
2:30pm: Good news for our American readers, Dave Zabriskie has made the breakaway and is currently driving the group along with Robbie Hunter of South Africa.
2:15pm: Sastre has made the front group! Kim Kirchen is also there along with Gerrans and Voigt. Sastre looks very comfortable and strong, this may be a smart move by the Spaniards.
2:12pm: New Zealand is also represented in the race today, with Chadwick, Dean and Gudsell.
2:10pm: But BIG Jensy is having none of it. Gerrans and Voigt are now riding hard and have split the peloton! There is a huge split as a bunch of around 25 riders has jumped off the front. The peloton will have to shut this down, it’s too dangerous.
2:08pm: A big attack from four riders off the front of the peloton. They have a good gap and are moving fast.
2:04pm: A big hello to our readers in America, who have some very strong riders to cheer for. The America team consists of George Hincapie, Levi Leipheimer, Jason McCartney, Christian Vande Velde and Dave Zabriskie.
2:00pm: 185km to go
1:56pm: Speaking of Contador, he is riding a special edition Trek Madone in Spanish National team colours. The red and yellow bike also features multi colour bar tape. Of course Alejandro Valverde is also riding a Spanish coloured bike also as the national champion.
1:52pm: The Spanish rider Alberto Contador has gone back to collect bottles for the team, something new to him. O’Grady and Bettini shake hands and wish each other the best for the race. Bettini seems to be very bored and is enjoying his time at the team car speaking to 2x Paris Roubaix winner, Franco Ballerini.
1:44pm: Another move, Big Jens Voigt has hit the front and is driving hard. He wants to be in that important move for Germany. The move has been brought back but Nibali attacks again, but this time he is unsuccessful.
1:42pm: This could be a very important move for both Nibali of Italy and Gerrans of Australia, as the teams of Italy and Australia now have a second hand to play in the race.
1:38pm: A big attack is launched by Vincenzo Nibali of Italy, but he is closely followed by Simon Gerrans of Australia. It looks like a group of four including Nibali and Gerrans may jump off the front and make a second group on the road.
1:30pm: Paolo Bettini on the front of the peloton.
1:25pm: 208km to go.
1:15pm: Wow, the lead is now up to 7:30. The two riders now have a solid lead on a very relaxed peloton.
1:10pm: Paolo Bettini is relaxed at the back of the peloton and gives a wave to the camera. Stuart O’Grady chats with his CSC team mate and Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre.
1:05pm: The two riders are still traveling along at a solid pace although Gallardo is looking a bit tired…will he be able to hold on for another 200km? We think…no.
1:01pm: First pictures from the race of the peloton.
12:50pm: Cadel Evans has a problem with his race radio and is currently getting it fixed at the Australian team car. He will need this later on during the race. Meanwhile the lone Chinese rider is still on the front of the peloton.
12:45pm: Michael Rogers has dropped back to see team manager Neil Stephens. Nothing seems to be a problem though and he rejoins the peloton.
12:43pm: Gallardo is riding a Trek Madone frame and Almoncado is riding a Giant TCR frame.
12:37pm: The two riders are H.Gallardo of Bolivia and P. Almoncado of Chile. They have built a solid gap on the peloton who are clearly not interested in these two riders.
12:34pm: The first attack has been launched! Two riders have jumped clear from the bunch.
12:32pm: Johan Van Summeran is enjoying a snack already in the race, knowing that there is a long race to come. There is very little wind on the course today, which will mean that the heat will be even more of a factor.
12:30pm: The Olympic road race has started with all riders starting. Defending champion Paolo Bettini was lined up with his team mates on the front of the line, next to the team of Spain. Cadel Evans was laughing at the start line, and with a cool towel wrapped around his neck to keep his body temperature down..