This stage was won, yet again, by Team Columbias’ Andre Greipel’. An impressive sprint at the finish to take the 4th stage win and 3 stage wins overall. He also continues to maintain a slim lead in the overall standings and a more impressive lead in the sprint classification.
The 4th stage from Norwood to Goolwa measured roughly 150Km and the longest stage to this point in the overall race. The race began in earnest as early in the race there was a uphill slope through kangaroo creek stringing out the early leaders.
Fox creek junction saw the only king of the mountain point of the race with an early break-away of about 7-9 riders and won by yesterdays king of the mountain point winner , by Thomas Rohregger of Team Milram. He looked very good on the climb.
Over the king of the mountain race, the 7 riders gained an impressive 3 minutes over the peloton. Rohregger had some impressive time bonus wins through the race and is now only a few seconds off Greipel’s overall lead. The 7 riders were slowly reeled in at around 120km, by leading peloton team, team Radioshack.
Lance Armstrong took the lead in the race in a 2 man group at this stage with a fellow team mate. However, they battled a strong head wind and were quickly swallowed up by team Columbia as Greipel was again at the front for an impressive sprint in the final meters of the race. No one can match the speed of Greipel when he is up front.
Results [Courtesy Cycling Weekly]
Tour Down Under stage 4: Norwood – Goolwa, 149.5km
1. André Greipel (Ger) HTC-Columbia
2. Robbie McEwen (Aus) Katusha
3. Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank
4. Gert Steegmans (Bel) Team RadioShack
5. Manuel Cardoso (Por) Footon Servetto
6. Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin-Transitions
7. Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma Lotto
8. Matthew Goss (Aus) Saxo Bank
9. Robert Forster (Ger) Milram
10. Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Francaise des Jeux
1. André Greipel (Ger) HTC-Columbia 13-23.57hours
2. Robbie McEwen (Aus) Katusha at 20 secs
3. Greg Henderson (NZl) Team Sky at 24 secs
4. Gert Steegmans (Bel) Team RadioShack at same time
5. Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank at 26 secs
6. Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma Lotto
7. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC at same time
8. Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana at 29 secs
9. Robbie Hunter (Aus) Garmin Transitions at 30 secs
10. Baden Cooke (Aus) Saxo Bank at same time