LUCERNE, Switzerland -- Erik Zabel won a sprint finish
Sunday to capture the second stage of the Tour de Suisse, and
Fabian Cancellara kept the leader's yellow jersey by finishing
Zabel covered the 97.5 miles from Olten to Lucerne in 4 hours, 4
minutes, 57 seconds. Daniele Bennati was runner-up for the second
straight day and is seven seconds behind Cancellara in the overall
"The stage was quite difficult," Zabel said. "And it could
have ended differently."
In the final mile, Greg Rast skidded out of control on a
left-hand turn and brought down several riders with him, though the
front 10 racers escaped.
Stuart O'Grady was fourth, followed by Murilo Fischer and Robbie
McEwen, all with the same time as Zabel.
This was Zabel's first ProTour victory since he took a pair of
stages at the Spanish Vuelta last year. It also marked the German's
first ProTour win since admitting last May he took
performance-enhancing drugs during the 1996 Tour de France.
Zabel is the only active rider among a group of former Telekom
riders who admitted taking the blood booster EPO in the 1990s.
Zabel's current team, Milram, decided to keep him until the end of
the year before ruling on whether to honor the last year on his
Zabel said he never again took performance-enhancing drugs after
using EPO for the first week of the 1996 Tour.
Monday's 142-mile third stage from Brunnen to the Austrian town
of Nauders is marked by difficult climbs.