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Vuelta Stage 6 plus Other News

Oscar Freire wins yet another final sprint today. He outran Spaniard Koldo Fernandez (who at least gave the locals something to cheer about), Angelo Furnan, Tom Boonen and Andre Koff for the win.  

Freire owns the points jersey, yet Vladimir Efimkin has stayed close enough to the lead to hang on to the golden jersey. Denis Menchov, Carlos Sastre, Maxime Monfort and Stijn Devolder round out the rest of the Top 5. Somehow, Freire is all the way down in 81st in the G.C. 

American Chris Horner moves up a little bit and is now in 28th place. 

Other news:
  • Johan Bruyneel confirms that he has been talking to team leadership at Astana about a position with their organization.  No firm date as to when he'll make a decision
  • The 44th Tour de Avenir starts today, with riders aged 19 to 22 organized in a national team format. 
  • In 2009, the Vuelta will start in the Netherlands, then through Belgium, and will not make its way to Spain until the 4th stage. 
  • Looks like the missed test situation with Alejandro Valverde is starting to resolve. The UCI admitted that they had made an error. 

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Vuelta Stage 7 plus Other News

Raul Garcia de Mateo and Jesus Rosendo broke away from the peloton only 3 km from the start of today's stage, eventually building up a nine minute lead. Their breakaway was aided by a big crash in the peloton with about 30km to go, but they still ended up being caught about 7 km from the finish. 
The sprinter's teams worked to move their riders to the front, but another crash within 2km of the finish blocked many of the contendors from previous days, such as Pettachi, Bennati and Freire. Allan Davis, Eric Zabel and Paulo Bettini were lucky enough to be ahead of the pack in a bunch sprint and fought for the stage amongst themselves. Allan Davis looked to have it wrapped up, but Zabel came around on the left in the final seconds to take the stage. Davis took second and Bettini was in third. There was almost no change in the G.C. today, with Vladimir Efimkin still on top. 
See the full story at
Other news: Alejandro Valverde is expected to sue the UCI for the false pu…