Friday July 11th, 2014

Stage 7Épernay / Nancy

Start 11h55 (Local time)

Jens Voigt's advice to first timers

How was the first time ?10.07.2014Stage 7- Épernay / Nancy

This focus on a Tour newcomer is obviously tongue-in-cheek: when Jens Voigt made his Tour de France debut in 1998, Danny van Poppel or Simon Yates, the two youngest riders in this edition, were five.

At 42, the evergreen German is twice as old as both of them and the oldest rider to start a Tour since 1927, when five over-40 men took part. He is also equalling the record of 17 Tours entered held jointly by George Hincapie since 2012 and Stuart O'Grady last year. From his first Tour in 1998, Voigt remembers having wrongly overlooked the advice from his older team-mates. And he is now well-placed to try and tell his younger colleagues what to do.

“I have only one advice to give them. Save as much energy as you can and relax every time you have a chance,” he told letour.fr

The advice is all the more valuable as Voigt has never been a man to spare his efforts. He did not miss his chance to shine again on his last Tour when he broke away in the first stage to take the polka-dot jersey. That day, he had a chance to teach a lesson to his young companions Benoit Charrier, in his first Tour, and Nicolas Edet, on only his second: “They forgot the rule number one in the cycling book: never leave 100 metres to Jens Voigt!”      

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    Matteo Trentin of Omega Pharma-Quick Step scored his second stage win at the Tour de France one year after taking the laurels in Lyon. He passed Peter Sagan in extremis on the line in Nancy. The green jersey wearer had done everything he could before with putting his Cannondale team at the front of the peloton all day. He attacked in the last climb and sprinted in a crash marred finale but had to accept another defeat.

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