Tuesday, October 26, 2021
HomeRaceRace ReviewsLe Tour de France 2014 - Stage 9; Gérardmer - Mulhouse, 166...

Le Tour de France 2014 – Stage 9; Gérardmer – Mulhouse, 166 km. Tony Martin Solo


Tour+de+France+logoTo catalogue Tony Martin ’s palmarès would take all day, the list is huge – so we’ve tried to illustrate his diversity.

It was 2003 when he won German Junior National Individual Time trial Championship; within a year he was national champion in the team pursuit alongside track legend, Jens Lehmann – the man Chris Boardman defeated to win the Olympic Pursuit in Barcelona in 1992.

In 2005 as well as riding stagier for Gerolsteiner he won two stages in the prestigious Italian U23 stage race, the Giro delle Regione.

Season 2006 saw him with team Thuringer Energie winning the GC in the U23 Thuringen Rundfahrt and German time trial champs.

In 2007 he won the Ràs and was second in the Tour de L’Avenir – a good pro contract was inevitable.

Tony Martin
As well as the stage win, Tony Martin goes into the lead in the KOM too. Photo©B.Bade/ASO

It was High Road who got his signature for 2008 and he wasted no time establishing himself in the paid ranks, winning the Hel van het Mergelland, a Dutch semi-classic and time trials in the ZLM Toer, Tour de L’Ain and Deutschland Tour.

He stayed with HTC/Columbia/High Road until the end of 2011 and in 2009 took a mountain stage in the Tour de Suisse and was third in the Worlds time trial.

In 2010 he was again Worlds TT bronze medallist and won the Benelux Tour.

The Volta ao Algarve went his way in 2011 as did the big TT’s in the Tour and Vuelta and it was gold at the Worlds.

In 2012 he doubled up with TTT and individual Worlds glory and won the Tour of Belgium.

Last year he took the GC in the Algarve and Belgium again as well as repeating his Worlds iTT and TTT double.

This year so far he’s won the Belgian Tour again and took two TT wins in the Suisse Tour as well as holding the yellow jersey until very near the end.

East German by birth, from Cottbus the 29 year-old is a product of the Erfurt Sports School and arguably still has his best years ahead of him.

Tony Martin
Martin winning the 2012 World TT Champs. Photo©fietsenphotography

We could wax lyrical but thought it best to hear the views of expert witnesses.

Our man with his finger on the Belgian pulse, Ivan tuned in to the Belgian sports news agency, Sporza to get us the latest from QuickStep’s home patch, explaining;

“Martin’s manager, Patrick Lefevre said today it was one of the greatest performances he has ever seen; Tony Martin fought for more than an hour to establish a gap of 30 seconds and then go away from the second group of 25 riders with the whole Europcar team trying to get him back.

“Remember that Lefevre has been one of the most respected managers in the sport for two decades and isn’t prone to throwing praise around.”

Ivan continued;

“Martin is at the moment renegotiating his contract with OPQS which ends this year, if he stays with Omega Pharma QuickStep he will probably go for the Hour Record in 2016.

“BMC man Greg Van Avermaet who was in the big break and would finish an eventual third on the day said the group of 25 were riding full gas to bring Martin back but could do nothing at all about it.

“The Europcar guys were riding ‘a bloc’ but the man was going away from them. QuickStep DS Wilfried Peeters said that Bakelants and Martin had carte blanche today, but it was the world champion TT who took his chance. Martin said he had perfect legs today – when he has good legs this is the result.

“Patrick Lefevre even said he felt very sorry for the Cannondale guy who had tried to stay with Martin.”

And again, ‘respect’ to QuickStep, they have Kwiatkowski as a potential top six man but don’t use that as an excuse to ride negatively – they’ve enlivened every stage of the race, thus far.

But humbled as we are by Tony’s achievement, perhaps we can offer one wee word of advice; ‘lose the PanzerNonsense hat please, Tony.’

The GC bag of crisps was given a huge shake today but we’re not going to pay too much attention to that given that those 161 K on Monday to the ‘Plank of the Bonnie Lassies’ are going to render anything we write today redundant by the top of that horrible final ascent.

Tony Martin
Gallopin in yellow on Bastille Day. Photo©B.Bade/ASO

Nonetheless, great to see Gallopin in yellow on Bastille Day and to see fortune favouring Lotto again, after Greipel’s stage win.

And good too to see Pinot and Rolland moving up – but to repeat, let’s wait until stage 10 is over before we run up the tricolour.

The joy of the French guys and QuickStep was in marked contrast to a tired looking Nibali who was no doubt glad to be able to skip the presentations, testing and press conference and get on the massage table early, for once.

Contador was cracking jokes with Benatti as he crossed the line – he’s in good fettle and there’s little doubt he’ll leave his mark on Stage 10, the final day in the Vosges.

And we must mention NetApp-Endura who’s Portuguese rider, Tiago Machado now sits in the third spot on GC – perhaps it’s only temporary but nice to see, nonetheless.

But surely the last words belong to Tony Gallopin.

If you check out the Lotto Belisol ‘Live Tour Dream’ video you’ll hear Tony being asked about his dreams for 2014.

He wants to see France win the World Cup (sorry, Tone) and, ‘a win in the Tour de France.’

Nice to see a man realising a dream – even if just for a day.

A demain.

Tony Martin
Cyrille Lemoine had a visit the other day from his pal (and soon-to-be teammate?) Nacer Bouhanni. Photo©B.Bade/ASO

Ed Hood
Ed's been involved in cycling for over 45 years. In that time he's been a successful time triallist, team manager, and sponsor of several teams and clubs. He's also a respected and successful coach, and during the winter months can often be found working in the cabins at the Six Days. Ed remains a massive fan of the sport and couples his extensive contacts with an inexhaustable enthusiasm for the minutiae and the history of our sport.

Related Articles

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 4: Mondorf-les-Bains – Vittel, 207.5km. Demare wins but Sagan DQd!

Utter madness! That’s all you can say about the finale, with no team really able to control it, the finish straight was a scene of complete chaos. Kittel and QuickStep blew it and were nowhere - it looked like just perhaps Cav was going to be the man as he let a gap open on his lead out men then jumped Demare’s wheel as the French champion roared by him.

The Bounce: TdF 2010 Stage 3 (mini Roubaix)

The Bounce. We came to this Tour with nine guys ready to race. We’re down our leader and facing some injuries, but if yesterday proved anything it’s that we’re still up for it. The day started out with a little stress, considering the injuries some of the guys were going to go over cobbles with.

Remembering Wiggins’ Tour de France

Don’t worry! You’ll get no lectures or swear words from me; just one old cycling lover’s random personal remembrances of another wonderful two weeks spent in La Belle France... is it really just three years since the memorable famous first British victory in the race for Bradley Wiggins? Can Chris Froome take the country's tally to three in a month's time?

Le Tour de France 2013 – Stage 19: Bourg-d’Oisans > Le Grand-Bornand, 204km. Rui Costa in the Monsoon

First we had Siberian snow at the Giro – and now, Rangoon rain at Le Tour. It’s never boring with VeloVeritas on the Grand Tours, and we saw Rui Costa take the win today.

Le Tour de France 2011, Stage 15 – kicking around the Limoux départ

Le Tour de France 2011 and We couldn't get out of Andorra quickly enough. Before 08:00 we got the lift down from the 5th floor of the hotel, to be greeted by great plumes of cigarette smoke belching out of the breakfast area. Last night's determination to "make a fuss about the lack of advertised weefee" evaporated, as we just wanted to put distance between us and this horrid place as fast as possible.

Le Tour de France 2006 – Day 2: Prologue Parcours Recce, Strasbourg

I walked in to the press room this morning and one of the guys from French radio told me that Ulrich and Sevilla were gone - sent home by T-Mobile due to their involvement in Operacion Puerto, the Spanish drugs bust. Le Tour de France 2006.

At Random

New to VV: Toby Watson presents Tobe’s Blog

We're very pleased to announce that Garmin Transitions physiotherapist Toby Watson will be contributing articles to his new VeloVeritas blog.

Matt Rendell – “I want to X-ray the Colombian National Psyche”

That Matt Rendell bloke, who’s on the tele, always asking folk questions? Isn’t it time someone asked him some questions? Especially since he’s got a new book out about one of his passions; Colombian Cycling – ‘Colombia Es Pasion’...

Le Tour de France 2012 – Stage 5: Rouen – Saint-Quentin, 197 km.

Le Tour de France 2012 - Stage 5. Greipel again – as we said yesterday, sprinting is as much a mental game as it is physical one. Greipel and his team had good morale and they exploited it – and of course they had that bit of luck which comes when all the stars align, staying clear of the crash which saw poor Tyler Farrar losing even more skin. And too much can’t be read into Cav’s defeat, he hit the deck at 60 kph the day before and whilst he has grinta aplenty, the human body knows when it’s time not too goo too deep – yesterday was one of those times where’s Cav’s engine management system took precedence over the driver’s wishes.

Wouter Weylandt, Special Forever

So I've been meaning to put together a blog post of my latest experiences of life here in Flanders. This season has certainly had its ups and downs, but all this seems rather irrelevant after the events of this week. Cycling indeed has its fair share of tragedies and the death of Wouter Weylandt in Stage 3 of the Giro this year is another one added to that list.

Montepaschi Strade Bianche 2010

Kazakh rider Maxim Iglinskiy (Astana) could barely raise an arm in victory at the Montepaschi Strade Bianche, after a crash earlier in the day, and five hours of hard racing over the Tuscan dirt roads. Thomas Löfkvist (Team Sky) attacked the remains of the front group of 11 men as they got to within 6km of Siena, knowing that a good placing in the final few corners were vital if he was going to repeat his win of last year.

Stuart Balfour – World Road Championships Breakaway Driver

Perhaps it was the ‘Scottish’ weather at Harrogate which made the Scots perform so well at the recent World Road Championships? Stuart Balfour spent much of his u23 Championship ‘up the road’ to help set up GB team leader, Tom Pidcock for his eventual bronze medal; Balfour finished in 39th spot.