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Last Updated: Wednesday, 23 April, 2003, 16:43 GMT 17:43 UK
Cycling in brief: March

27 March: Zulle joins Phonak

Former world time trial champion Alex Zuelle has left Team Coast of Germany to join Phonak.

The Swiss team announced that Zuelle is expected to begin riding for his new team in this weekend's Criterium International in France.

The 34-year-old's contract with Phonak is until the end of the season with an option for a one-year extension, even though Zuelle announced last month that he would retire at the end of this season.

The Swiss rider said his decision to move was provoked by concerns over salaries at Team Coast, which has been under scutiny over claims of riders not being paid.

9 March: Pascual Llorente claims Murcia victory

Spain's Javier Pascual Llorente held onto his advantage to take the Tour of Murcia.

The Spaniard, who had held the lead from the second stage, finished in 15 hours, 58 minutes and 18 seconds.

He was 17 seconds ahead of Jan Hruska of the Czech Republic with Spain's Haimar Zubeldia in third.

Lance Armstrong took second place in Sunday's stage to finish 32nd overall, over nine munutes behind Pascual Llorente.

8 March: Pena takes Murcia stage

Victor Hugo Pena, of the US Postal team, won the fourth stage of the Tour of Murcia, a 167km ride from Carthagene to a summit finish at Col de la Santa.

The Colombian rider, a team-mate of Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, is the defending champion.

Spain's Javier Pascual Llorente, of the Kelme team, retains the overall lead.

7 March: Zabel grabs Murcia win

Germany's Erik Zabel claimed his first win of the season when he burst away from the pack in the final stretch of the 161-km third stage of the Tour of Murcia.

The Telekom rider hit the front 300m out and helf off Swiss rider Beat Zberg and Belgium's Nico Sijmens.

Spain's Javier Pascual Llorente retained the leader's yellow jersey, seven seconds ahead of Kelme team-mate Alejandro Valverde and Euskaltel rider Haimar Zubeldia.

6 March: Pascual Llorente on form in Murcia

Spain's Javier Pascual Llorente used his explosive climbing skills to power away from fellow Spaniard Haimar Zubeldia and win the second stage of the Tour of Murcia.

Zubeldia finished two seconds adrift, with Pascual Llorente's Kelme team-mate Alejandro Valverde a further 10 seconds back in third.

Pascual Llorente holds a six-second advantage over Zubeldia in the overall standings.

Cycling in brief
22 Apr 03  |  Cycling

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