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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Tour of Missouri: Chicchi wins Stage 6; Zabriskie still in yellow

Sorry about being so late with my Tour of Missouri update for Stage 6. I had a busy evening at my paying job at the Belleville News-Democrat, which also kept me away from the Southwestern High School Class of 1979 30-year high school reunion Saturday night.

Yes, I'm that old!

Anyway, Francesco Chicchi (Liquigas-Cannondale) won Saturday's Stage 6 in yet another sprint finish. Chicchi, who won last year's final stage of the Tour of Missouri, edged Thor Hushovd (Cervelo-Test Team) and Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Colavita-Sutter Home).

David Zabriskie (Garmin-Slipstream) maintained his 30-second lead in the general classification going into today's finale in Kansas City. Although the Kansas City circuit is more hilly and technical than the the St. Louis circuit that ended the 2007 and 2008 event, I wouldn't be surprised if there was yet another bunch finish.

The peloton averaged 29.85 mph on the 110-mile course from Chillicothe, the home of sliced bread, to St. Joseph, the eastern terminus of the Pony Express route. It's the fastest stage ever in the Tour of Missouri.

"We were going 52K (kilometers per hour) for the first part of the race. So, we were flying all day. Only at the Tour de France do you see something like this," Chicchi said on the Tour of Missouri Web site.

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