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Stage 11 ends Discovery's chance of defending

7/13/2006

PLA-DE-BERET, Spain -- The Discovery Channel team manager believes none of his proteges is going to succeed Lance Armstrong in the Tour de France's roll of honor after they all lagged in Stage 11 on Thursday.

"This is not going to be our Tour de France," said Johan
Bruyneel.

"It's better to forget the overall standings. We should be
looking for a stage winner."

The team's best-placed rider at the end of the five climbs
sprinkling the 128-mile ride from Tarbes to Pla-de-Beret was Jose Azevedo.

The Portuguese was a distant 15th, 4:10 behind stage winner
Denis Menchov of Russia.

Azevedo is now 18th overall, 7:27 adrift of new leader Floyd
Landis of the United States.

American George Hincapie floundered and finished 21 minutes
off the pace. He is now 40th in the overall standings, 23:01
behind Landis.

"For the overall standings, it's finished," said Hincapie.

"For the moment we haven't chosen a leader," said Bruyneel.
"When you don't have a guy in the top 10, you can't have a
leader."