Paris, Friday To quote our favourite BBC commentators, “This was a massive great big win for Hélène at a critical point in the race and her career!” In order to gain this advantage, she rode over the top of the much favoured Thor Hushovd as well as Oscar Freire, both of whom lost huge chunks of time. It was a case of, “Bridge to engine room – more power – and it was just there!” she was heard to say.
Rumours abounded regarding a téte á téte she was seen having with teammate Thor following the race. It seems to have been a discussion over who would be leading the Team Crédit Agricole sprinters over the line on the Champs. No one was quite sure of the outcome as neither rider has commented. This reporter has been unable to confirm the story as Team CA management are being deliberately tight-lipped. We think that Oscar and Thor were at the finish by the scruff of their racing shorts but Hélène barely seemed to break a sweat. Only the final kilometres will tell the outcome of this Tour.