Sandy Casar - Career

Career

Born in Mantes-la-Jolie, Yvelines, Casar turned professional in 2000 after riding for Jean Floch-Mantes as an amateur. Casar's talent was revealed in Paris–Nice 2002, which he finished second at 23 years old. He finished 13th in the 2003 Giro d'Italia, in front of climber Marco Pantani. He had his biggest win in a stage of the 2003 Tour de Suisse. He then finished 16th in the 2004 Tour de France, and sixth in the 2006 Giro d'Italia, 25 minutes behind winner Ivan Basso. Casar also won the Route du Sud in 2005.

On 27 July 2007, he won his first Tour de France stage, beating Laurent Lefevre, Axel Merckx and Michael Boogerd in a sprint after a collision with a dog earlier in the day. He then finished 14th overall in the 2008 Tour de France.

In 2009, Casar finished second in the 16th stage of the 2009 Tour de France. Stage 16 was originally won by Mikel Astarloza. However, Astarloza was found after the Tour to have tested positive for EPO before the race had started. The organisers stripped him of the stage win and Casar became the official stage winner. Casar later finished 11th overall that year.

In 2010, Casar won the stage 9 of the 2010 Tour de France, after being part of a long breakaway that went over numerous categorized climb, including the Col de la Madeleine. The breakaway was down to only four units in the descent of the col, and got caught in the final kilometer by Andy Schleck and Alberto Contador, who had escaped from the main group on the Madeleine. Casar won the uphill sprint to take the prestigious victory in one of the toughest stages of that year's Tour. In 2011, he won the Paris–Camembert classic, again after being part of a long breakaway. He tried to escape on a slope near the end, but was caught by four riders. He nonetheless prevailed in the sprint against these four, taking the win on the roads he trained on in his youth.

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