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Watch Free P2P TV Live and On Demand Coverage of Cycling Tour Vuelta Ciclista al País Vasco (Euskal Herria, Basque Country) 2009

roadskater's picture

Today is a good chance to take a quick look at some cycling of the climbing sort starting at 9:45 a.m., or later if you want to see it on demand.

I'm fast becoming a fan of UniversalSports.com for their coverage of speed skating long track and short track, plus other human-powered and gravity sports. This week, you can watch Alberto Contador Velasco, Chris Horner, Louis Leon Sanchez, Frank Schleck, Cadel Evans, Carlos Sastre Candil and many more notable climbers in th ebike crazy Spanish Basque and Navarre autonomous regions (if I got it right) of the greater Basque region, which straddles the Spanish-French border along the Atlantic Ocean). It's all very complicated and delicate, but let's just say while the sprinters are hacking it out in the Spring classics, the skinny greyhound boys are in the Basque Country (Basque: Euskal Herria; Spanish: País Vasco; French: Pays Basque) climing lots of Category 3 and 2 and a few Category 1 climbs.

Astana has a fine team assembled, but without Levi Leipheimer or Lance Armstrong and some other big names, nevertheless including last year's winner Contador and, back from injury, Chris Horner.

If you want to see the race live (with no commentary, I think) you can catch it at 9:45 a.m. on http://universalsports.com. Later in the day, the Universal Sports TV channel shows the event with commentary, and sometime later yet, the voice-over version of the day's stage comes up as On-Demand (watch it when you want, free). This is awesome! Thank you Universal Sports and NBC! For more video and audio options always see http://steephill.tv.

Check out the schedule page here...
http://www.universalsports.com/SportSelect.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=23000&KEY=&SPID=13044&SPSID=105620

Check out their results dashboard here...
http://www.universalsports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?SPSID=105618&SPID=13044&DB_OEM_ID=23000&ATCLID=3698691

Also from steephill is this info on USA riders (though at least one dropped out before stage 2 as I have it)

USA entrants to País Vasco
31 CALDWELL Blake GRM
132 DANIELSON Thomas GRM
133 DUGGAN Timothy GRM
4 HORNER Christopher AST
94 LEWIS Craig THR
137 PATE Danny GRM
138 ZABRISKIE David GRM

Spoilers below for Stages 1 and 2:

Stage 1

Caisse d'Epargne has Luis Leon Sanchez, fresh from the Paris-Nice victory, and he took Stage 1 on Monday in a sprint to the finish that still had a bunch tied with the same time, including Contador. Info credit universalsports.com

1 51 SÁNCHEZ GIL, Luis León CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP 3:28:43
2 11 SÁNCHEZ, Samuel EUSKALTEL - EUSKADI ESP m.t.
3 32 PINEAU, Jérôme QUICK STEP FRA m.t.
4 174 KNEES, Christian TEAM MILRAM GER m.t.
5 43 KOLOBNEV, Alexandr TEAM SAXO BANK RUS m.t.
6 52 RODRÍGUEZ, Joaquín CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP m.t.
7 98 ROGERS, Michael TEAM COLUMBIA - HIGH ROAD AUS m.t.
8 141 NIBALI, Vincenzo LIQUIGAS ITA m.t.
9 35 DEVENYNS, Dries QUICK STEP BEL m.t.
10 161 EVANS, Cadel SILENCE-LOTTO AUS m.t.
11 6 HORNER, Chris ASTANA USA m.t.
12 101 CUNEGO, Damiano LAMPRE - N.G.C ITA m.t.
13 1 CONTADOR, Alberto ASTANA ESP m.t.
14 71 COLON MAS, Antonio TEAM KATUSHA ESP m.t.
15 61 CASAR, Sandy FRANÇAISE DES JEUX FRA m.t.
16 41 SCHLECK, Frank TEAM SAXO BANK LUX m.t.
17 56 LÓPEZ GARCÍA, David CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP m.t.
18 111 GESINK, Robert RABOBANK NED m.t.
19 145 KREUZIGER, Roman LIQUIGAS CZE m.t.
20 12 MARTÍNEZ, Egoi EUSKALTEL - EUSKADI ESP m.t.
21 53 ARROYO DURAN, David CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP m.t.

Stage 2

I won't spoil the results but will say there was a long breakaway that was down to 4 then 2 then 1 then 2 then...? Good stuff for the viewing on the last third or fourth of the day's video. After two stages the same 21 if I have it right are still at the same time.

Stage 3 has the most Category 1 climbs of all the stages methinks, and finishes with a Cat 1 climb, so if you are a fan of Contador or want to see what someone else can do when he attacks, Wednesday morning (or watch it later) is likely the Stage for you.

Locations

Stage 1 Start/Finish; Stage 2 Start Ataun, Guipuzcoa
Spain
43° 0' 25.704" N, 2° 10' 23.214" W
Stage 2 Finish; Stage 3 Start Villatuerta, Navarra
Spain
42° 39' 33.84" N, 1° 59' 38.2236" W
Stage 3 Finish; Stage 4 Start Éibar, Guipuzcoa
Spain
43° 11' 3.048" N, 2° 28' 23.8404" W
Stage 4 Finish; Stage 5 Start Güeñes, Vizcaya
Spain
43° 12' 37.1556" N, 3° 5' 43.1412" W
Stage 5 Finish; Stage 6 Start/Finish Zalla, Vizcaya
Spain
43° 11' 57.4944" N, 3° 8' 52.2636" W

Comments

roadskater's picture

Contador, Horner, Evans Look Good; Stage 3 Vuelta al País Vasco

As of this writing the commentaried on-demand presentation from universalsports.com is not posted, but they have a note that it will be there "soon." 

It was a great stage, especially the last 12k or so, but more than that. Lots of the roads and hills remind me of the North Carolina mountains near Boone, NC and also some of it looked like the area near Mt. Mitchell, NC...the 4000-6684-foot mountains. 

Astana has been present as a unified team in this event, and definitely in support of Contador. I have always like Chris Horner as far back as I remember, and one year he did a lot of video blog stuff I think it was, this during the Tour de France and when he was riding in support of Cadel Evans. Back then I wasn't sure how much help he ended up being. This year, I was waiting to see what he might do. Stage 3 of the Basque Tour was good evidence he can be of help.

At one point on the final climb, Horner had set Contador up perfectly to launch off the front. When Horner faded and moved over it looked like his day was over and Contador would make his move...and Contador did make a mini-move that was followed closely. Not long after this, amazingly to me, Horner caught up with Contador and put himself in front again in service of his leader. This was awesome stuff and I was feeling like bowing not worthy style to Horner. I only wish I could be so good and so selfless! 

The next thing of note was how Contador eventually took the lead again and blasted away from three other riders, Samuel Sanchez of the 2008 Roadskater.net jersey inspiring team Euskaltel-Euskadi (a Spaniard allowed to ride for the Basque team), Antonio Colon Mas (a Spaniard riding for Katusha) and for the first time showing us something this year as I recall, Horner's former teammate, Cadel Evans. After taking a serious dig to establish second position on the up, Evans seemed to decide to follow the Spaniards down the hill to the finish where he could pass them again...he seemed a bit unsure of his descending skills or at least convinced these other fellows knew the roads better so why not follow. This is all my impression, whether factual or not! But good on ya Cadel; glad to see you are in the mix. 

And I hope this gets Contador some respect, as it was quite a showing...again...of his talent. Of course some were typing Contadoper in the chat windows, but I will hope they are wrong of course, while being haunted by the associations and doubts expressed elsewhere here where the name Astana appears. 

If you get a chance, watch at least the last 7k or so, maye 12k, or all of it. The full screen view on UniversalSports.com has several speeds, up to 5x, so you can blast through some quiet portions or gaps in the coverage.

If you want to see the final 7k on YouTube without English, here are two links from steephill.tv...

Stage 4 is 9:45a.m. EDT tomorrow. Check universalsports.com and steephill.tv.

The overall (General Classification) after stage 3.

Rank No. Rider Team Nation Time
1 1 CONTADOR, Alberto ASTANA ESP 11:59:08
2 11 SÁNCHEZ, Samuel EUSKALTEL - EUSKADI ESP +9
3 161 EVANS, Cadel SILENCE-LOTTO AUS +9
4 71 COLON MAS, Antonio TEAM KATUSHA ESP +9
5 101 CUNEGO, Damiano LAMPRE - N.G.C ITA +28
6 111 GESINK, Robert RABOBANK NED +33
7 51 SÁNCHEZ GIL, Luis León CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP +36
8 145 KREUZIGER, Roman LIQUIGAS CZE +55
9 141 NIBALI, Vincenzo LIQUIGAS ITA +55
10 61 CASAR, Sandy FRANÇAISE DES JEUX FRA +55
11 52 RODRÍGUEZ, Joaquín CAISSE D'EPARGNE ESP +55

 

roadskater's picture

Raw feed for Stage 3 Vuelta al País Vasco

Here's a link to the raw (uncommented) feed for Vuelta al País Vasco on Universal Sports. It's the last 50k or so. I think you get 3 climbs and descents in this package. Even on 5x for most of it you'll see some beautiful country that makes me miss the places of times in my youth in the mountains of North Carolina (as mentioned before). I can see why people are passionate for this land. I think there is a lot of good camera work from the motorbike as well, with lots of closeups of bikes and cyclists. http://www.universalsports.com/mediaPlayer/media.dbml?CLIP_ID=388727&CLI...

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