Race is Saturday July 30, 2011
17 Big Photos from the 2010 Clasica San Sebastian — sirotti + flockton
15 Big Photos from 2009 — sirotti and colin flockton
|2011 Clásica San Sebastián Teams|
|Team Rosters and |
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Clásica San Sebastián 2011 results 1 Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) 5:48:53 2 Carlos Barredo (Rabobank) + 0:12 3 Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) + 0:14 4 Joaquim Rodríguez (Katusha) 5 Dries Devenyns (Quick Step) 6 Frank Schleck (Leopard-Trek) 7 Haimar Zubeldia (RadioShack) 8 Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) 9 Rigoberto Urán (Sky) 10 Jelle Vanendert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) + 0:50 11 Simon Gerrans (Sky) + 2:05 12 Simone Ponzi (Liquigas-Cannondale) 13 Matti Breschel (Rabobank) 14 Francesco Gavazzi (Lampre-ISD) 15 J Joaquín Rojas (Movistar) 16 Murilo Fischer (Garmin-Cervélo) 17 Juan José Cobo (Geox) 18 Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) 19 Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Cervélo) 20 Mathias Frank (BMC)Gilbert's stunning season continues with San Sebastian victory — cyclingnews
July 29 update:
2011 Interactive Official Rosters (group riders by native country or racing age) — steephill.tv
Preview: Tour stars and home riders to the fore in San Sebastian — cyclingnews
Strong field to line up in San Sebastian — cyclingnews
Van Avermaet targets San Sebastián after Wallonie victory — velonation
Fränk Schleck targeting San Sebastian — cyclingnews
Ivan Basso carrying Tour de France form to San Sebastian — velonation
No rest for weary: Hesjedal heading to Clásica after big Tour ride — velonews
Cunego returns to one-day action in San Sebastian — cyclingnews
Our course preview from 2009 is still relevant — steephill.tv
|steephill is also on Twitter with race info and video updates|
Start time: Saturday 11:10 CET ();
Weather for San Sebastian, Spain
Earliest live video: 15:15 CET (); See all the live video, audio and text options
Approximate finish: 17:11 CET (); Weather San Sebastian, Spain
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| live video (basque)
live video (basque)
|Basque; ETB1 broadcast starting at 15:15 CET.|
live video (flemish)
live video (flemish)
|Belgium only; Sporza live coverage starts at 15:45 CET.|
live video (italian)
live video (italian)
|Italy; Looks like RAI Tre will have live coverage starting at 15:30 CET and live and delayed coverage on RAI Sport 2|
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|Dutch; NOS TV starting at ?? CET.|
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|live text updates||Official text updates in Spanish w/ ticker (Google English Translation)|
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|live text updates ES
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|Spanish text updates (with english translations) from Biciciclismo.|
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2010 results for Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 1 Luis Leon Sanchez (Caisse d'Epargne) 5h 47' 13" 2 Alexandre Vinokourov (Astana) 3 Carlos Sastre (Cervelo TestTeam) 4 Haimar Zubeldia (RadioShack) + 34" 5 Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) + 37" 6 Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Transitions) 7 Robert Gesink (Ned) 8 Nicolas Roche (Ier) 9 Samuel Sanchez (Spa) 10 Richie Porte (Aus) 11 Greg van Avermaet + 2' 13" 12 Carlos Barredo (Spa) 13 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) 14 Javier Moreno (Spa)Full Official Results — diariovasco
Share The Love: Tweet The Clásica San Sebastián Live Dashboard
November 23 update: The 2010 Clásica San Sebastián is Saturday July 31, 2010
1 BARREDO Carlos (ESP/Quick Step) 5.37.00 2 KREUZIGER Roman (CZE/Liquigas) 3 DELAGE Mickael (FRA/Silence Lotto) + .07 4 VELITS Peter (SVK/Milram) 5 HESJEDAL Ryder (CAN/Garmin) 6 POZZATO Filippo (ITA/Katusha)Barredo wins wet San Sebastián Classic — cyclingnews
2009 Race Preview: Hills and Beaches that's Clásica San Sebastián
July 30, 2009 update: After nearly three months of non-stop stage racing hijinx, we return to one-day racing with the Clásica San Sebastián. The Clásica begins and ends in San Sebastián a coastal city in the Basque Country. Located just over 20 kilometers South of the French border, the city sits surrounded by coastal mountains at the mouth of the Urumea River in a half-moon shaped bay. It is famous for its beaches, and the race finishes on the Donastia-Boulevard along the Zurriola Playa.
The course covers 237 kilometers and heads inland into the coastal mountain ranges. Six categorized climbs enliven the proceedings and typically only a small number of riders survive to contest the finale. This race favors the one-day riders who can climb, but also have a fast finish. The final kilometer follows a flat, wide boulevard. Little wonder that Alejandro Valverde won here last year. Thanks to the climber-friendly course, grand tour riders like Carlos Sastre and Cadel Evans have also ridden well at San Sebastián, but the flat finish does them no favors. Past winners include Alejandro Valverde, Leonard Bertagnolli, Paolo Bettini, Erik Dekker, and Laurent Jalabert (twice). Lance Armstrong won the Clásica San Sebastián back in 1995.
The race hits the hills right off the start with a series of three categorized climbs in the first 70 kilometers. An early break typically escapes on the slopes of the Alto de Garate or the Alto de Azkarate. Both are rated category 2, and climb for less than ten kilometers. The Clásica course is rarely flat, and after descending the Alto de Azkarate, the riders begin a steady climb to Oñati. From there, the course passes over the seven kilometer Alto de Udana, a category 2 climb. The Udana is not especially steep and its gradients range between 3.5% and 5.0%. The maximum gradient is 5%, and the final two kilometers are at 5% and 4.9%. The Udana will tire the legs, but not decide the race. From the summit of the Alto de Udana, there remains 133 kilometers to race.
The first four climbs generally whittle down the numbers, but the decisive moves will come on the final two climbs of the day, the Alto de Jaizkibel and the Alto de Arkale. The Jaizkibel ascends 8 kilometers and has a maximum gradient of 9%, which comes in the first kilometer. The first five kilometers are steep, though there is a brief stretch of flat road between kilometers 3 and 4. After hitting 8% between kilometers 4 and 5, the climb backs down to 6.5%. The gradient continues to slacken as the road approaches the summit, and the final kilometer is nearly flat. In past editions, no more than 20 to 30 riders have remained in contention after the Jaizkibel. An attack is almost certain to go here, though with nearly 40 kilometers to go to the finish, the Jaizkibel is unlikely to decide the winner.
Last year, the organizers added a final climb, the Alto de Arkale, to give the climbers one last chance to escape closer to the finish. At 2.7 kilometers, the Arkale is short and steep. The first two kilometers climb at 6% and the final .7 kilometer climbs at just over 7%. The Arkale summits with 15 kilometers to race. In last year’s edition of the Clásica San Sebastián, Paolo Bettini forced a group of five riders clear on the Arkale, but the move did not survive the flat run-in.
From the summit of the Alto de Arkale, the road descends precipitously back into the city. The course follows wide boulevards to the finish along the Zurriola Playa. The finish is flat, and though the Arkale may create a selection, it is no easy matter to stay away to the finish. Last year, a group of eleven reformed after the final climb, and Alejandro Valverde of Caisse d’Épargne won the sprint to the line.
Who To Watch
Coming as it does just one week after the Tour de France, this race brings together riders who have just finished the French grand tour and riders who are building their form for the Vuelta a España and the Fall one-day races. That dynamic makes it difficult to predict who will ride well. Some riders will come out of the Tour de France on flying form after a week of rest, while others will show up to the Clásica San Sebastián with legs toasted by their efforts in France. With the World Championships still nearly three months away, riders like Damiano Cunego who are hoping to race well in Mendrisio will likely be far from their best form. Overall, this race suits the one-day riders who have the legs for the climbs and the speed for the flat finish.
Alejandro Valverde returns this year in the hope of repeating last year’s success. The Clásica San Sebastián suits his characteristics nearly to perfection, and he is surely a favorite to win. Outside the bunch sprinters, Valverde has one of the fastest finishing kicks in the sport. With wins in the high mountains of both Spain and France to his credit, Valverde will not flinch in the climbs. It’s difficult to know what kind of form the Caisse d’Épargne rider will bring to this race, because he did not ride this year’s Tour de France due to a ban imposed by the Italian anti-doping authorities in connection with Operation Puerto. All the same, Valverde can count on strong support from his team-mates Luis León Sánchez, fresh off a stage win at the Tour de France, Joaquín Rodríguez, who has a number of top ten finishes in the hilly one-day races to his credit, and climber David Arroyo.
Basque Country locals Euskaltel-Euskadi will support Samuel Sánchez for this race. Sánchez skipped the Tour de France this year and is building his form toward the Vuelta a España and the road World Championships. Sánchez climbs well and has killer descending skills. He lacks the finishing speed of Valverde, though, and will find it difficult to win if he goes to the line with his Spanish rival. In last year’s edition of the race, Sánchez finished seventh in the sprint won by Valverde. Sánchez achieved his most prestigious win when he won the hilly road race at the Beijing Olympics. He is also a past Spanish National Champion, has won the hilly Züri Metzgete, and has finished on the podium at the fall classic Giro di Lombardia.
Let’s play word association: Giro di Lombardia. No, not falling leaves. Damiano Cunego. Remember him? Yes, it does seem like forever since the Giro d’Italia. Cunego has returned to racing after a short mid-season break, and is building his form toward his fall goals, the World Championship road race in Mendrisio and the Giro di Lombardia, which he has now won three times. In much the same way as Valverde, Cunego has the perfect combination of characteristics for the Clásica San Sebastián. He climbs well and can sprint with the best of the one-day riders. Cunego has frequently evoked comparisons to Paolo Bettini, though the Lampre-Ngc rider has several high finishes at the Giro d’Italia to his credit. Cunego’s early season did not live up to his hopes when victory proved elusive at Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the race he most wanted to win. He made the podium at Flèche-Wallone and finished fifth at the Amstel Gold Race, but then he rode a disastrous Giro d’Italia. Certainly, the Italian, who placed second at last year's World Championship in Varese, will be hoping the second half of his season goes better. Cunego’s main objectives lie more than two months distant, though, and he will not likely bring his best form to this weekend’s race. Still, he’s a rider to watch and if he makes the finale, he has a good shot at the podium, if not the win.
Saxo Bank brings three talented riders to the Clásica San Sebastián.
Like Saxo Bank, Liquigas-Doimo brings much the same team to the Clásica San Sebastián as they did to the Tour de France.
Over at Katusha, Filippo Pozzato and Serguei Ivanov will share leadership duties. Ivanov has ridden a successful season so far. He won the Amstel Gold Race in a solo attack and similarly, took a stage victory at the Tour de France. The Russian climbs well and has a knack for winning solo from a distance. A small group finish with Valverde will not suit him, but if he escapes alone in the finale, Ivanov will be very difficult to chase down. For Pozzato, meanwhile, this race is likely too hilly to suit his talents, though certainly, he has the speed for the finish. If by chance the race does not go especially hard over the climbs, Pozzato could survive to contest the victory, but it’s a bit of a long-shot.
Fresh off their victory at the Tour de France, Astana will race in San Sebastián with Haimar Zubeldia and Janez Brajkovic as their team leaders. Zubeldia rode hard through the high mountains of the Tour, and may have maxed out his fun-o-meter in July. Last year, he finished ninth at the Clásica San Sebastián just behind the sprint. Brajkovic, meanwhile, is building his form toward the Vuelta a España. The slight climber has not fared especially well in the one day races in the past, and is not likely to figure here. Astana waits for September and their next grand tour appointment.
Sylvain Chavanel and Jérôme Pineau lead Quick Step in San Sebastián. This course is a bit hilly for the two classics specialists, though both are talented all-arounders. A good day from either rider could place him in the top ten, but higher is likely too much to ask.
Last, but certainly, not least, Bbox Bouygues Télécom brings their two Tour de France stage winners to San Sebastián. Thomas Voeckler and Pierrick Fédrigo will both ride the Clásica. Voeckler placed in the top twenty at this race last year and has won the hilly GP Plouay. More likely, though, the French team figure more in the early breakaways than in the finale.
Others: Christian Vandevelde of Garmin-Slipstream, David Moncoutié of Cofidis, Linus Gerdemann of Milram, Martin Velits of Milram, Sebastian Langevelde of Rabobank, Oscar Freire of Rabobank, Christophe Le Mével of Français des Jeux, , Sandy Casar of Français des Jeux,
The Clásica San Sebastián occupies an awkward spot on the calender coming as it does just after the Tour de France and so long before the major Fall races. All the same, the challenging course always makes for a selective race. The scenery isn’t half bad either. This year’s field is packed with talent, and the finale on the Jaizkibel and the Arkale should be hard-fought. Look for a small group to contest the finish on the beachfront Donastia-Boulevard. — Gavia
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