___Race Snippets


64th World Championship Road Race 1997


By Barry Boyce, CyclingRevealed Historian













Frenchman Went Against Team Orders and WON!

The 1997 World Championship Road Race in San Sebastian, Spain featured 19 laps of 13.5 km for a total of 265.5 kilometers of racing. The elite start list included 163 of the World's top riders.

The French plan was to deliver Thursday’s Individual Time Trial winner Laurent Jalabert to the closing stages of the race in the lead group. Mid-race Laurent Brochard was presented with another plan.

On a wet and windswept course the race entered its final lap with a large 60 rider peloton. Dutchman Leon Van Bon tried repeatedly but unsuccessfully to reduce the size of the breakaway group. The final selection was made when Spain's Melchor Mauri did launch an attack, which split the group. He was chased and caught by Brochard and Van Bon and with less than two kilometers to go, Bo Hamburger (Den), Udo Bolts (Ger), and Laurent Dufaux (Sui) managed to bridge the gap.

From the 6 rider group Leon Van Bon opened up the sprint but Dutchman's effort was no match for the stronger Brochard. The powerful Frenchman sprinted past Van Bon in the last 25 meters to claim the Rainbow Jersey. Bo Hamburger (Den) came past Van Bon at the line for second place. 

SPECIAL NOTE: "I did not feel obliged to follow team orders because I felt so strong,'' Brochard explained. "I was working for the team but when I saw them lagging I decided to act. My role was to neutralize breakaways but I was alone and I could not see any of my team coming, so I made my move.”

WCRR October 12, 1997
256.5 Km [ San Sebastian, Spain ]

1. Laurent BROCHARD (Fra) 6h16’48”

2. Bo Hamburger (Den)

3. Leon Van Bon (Ned)

Starters: 163
Finishers: 87
Average Speed: 40.840 km/h

WCRR 1996

WCRR 1998

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