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Tour of California, stage 3

Commentary by Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen, Bob Roll

(during the stage)

Sherwen: You have to take your hat off to the man on the front for Team Astana. He’s a famous professional bike rider, riding in his last year as a professional. Accompanied Lance Armstrong to many victories. Bob, Chechu Rubiera, he’s a stud, isn’t he!

Roll: He’s really hoggin’ it on this climb, Chechur Rubiera … There is Rubiera in the Astana jersey, absolutely demolishing the field. Maybe 15 or 20 guys left in the front at this point.

Liggett: I think you’re right, Bob. That field - remember 130 guys came to the front of this climb. A lot are now in the following cars.We’ve heard of at least 8 riders giving up today so far ...

Roll: But look at Chechu Rubiera, doing the damage!

Liggett: I have to say, Bob, how often have we seen Rubiera do this for Lance Armstrong in the Tour de France?

Roll: if there’s been a thousand climbs in the Tour, Chechu’s probably been in the front for about 900 of them. (They laugh)

Liggett: Yes, that is absolutely right …

Roll: A great ride so far by Astana.

(several minutes later)

Liggett: Well, as we’re getting up the dizzy height of 4,000 ft., there’s still a little bit of climbing to go, but we have a very select group of riders at the front. They are opening a gap on they rest of the field now, all thanks to the relentless pace-making here of Chechu Rubiera.

(commercial break)

Liggett: We’re looking now at Chechu Rubiera here as he comes up to the last 300m, the topping out of 4,000 ft. of Mt. Hamilton. He deserves to be first over the top, the way he's paced their group up. Wiped everybody else out, and he's put Levi Leipheimer right in the frame.

Sherwen: and as he comes to the top here, he's going to get himself maximum points there…

(after the stage, at the finish line)

Roll: Levi Leipheiner, great congratulations. Chechu Rubiera setting the tempo on Hamilton and the bottom of Sierra Road, Chris Horner also there in the front group. What a day for Astana!

Levi: Awesome day for Astana. We came out here with something to prove. Chechu was …was…he was like the Chechu of six years ago in the Tour de France. Unbelievable. Gave me chills going up Hamilton. Then to do it again on Sierra for half the climb- it was awesome. I’m really proud of the team.”