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Flanders Feedbag

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Now that Dreidaagse de Panne is officially out of the way, it's all-Flanders here at the Podium Cafe til Sunday. Except maybe for a mention of the VDS-eligible GP Miguel Indurain. As expected, the closer we get to a major race, the less news there is...

  • Lots of action on the road today, where Gert Steegmans flashed some speed to win stage 3, and Stijn Devolder saved some Disco face with his time trial win to cap the day. Luca Paolini imploded in the race of truth, handing Alessandro Ballan a six-second win over Joost Posthuma. Other good news was Leif Hoste's decent showing, which has him back on track for Sunday. Pez provides Dreidaagse's color.
  • VeloNews still regards the race as notes column fodder only. Did something happen to John Wilcockson? I hope not, but at a minimum I fear he's no longer at VN. And as if there isn't enough reason to worry, even Andrew Hood's byline sits over a column that informs us Alejandro Valverde won't be in Brugge. Ya think? Ouch.
  • CN, who have earned the right to run notes on the race with yesterday's comprehensive preview, and Gregor Brown rounds up news about Italians.
  • Pez says others have anointed Boonen the favorite (duh). But has Pez too? No smoke from the Pez Tower in downtown Vancouver as to their pick to win. If it helps move things along, let me just say, buck buck... BRAWKK!! Meanwhile, here's an interview with the nearest available Brit.
  • The Pro Tour goes all in for DNA testing. Ullrich's case undoubtedly dislodged that one, however unusual the situation may be.