Originally created 07/13/97

Zabel wins again, this time it sticks



BORDEAUX, France (AP) - A day after being disqualified from a stage victory, Erik Zabel of Germany won today's seventh stage of the Tour de France.

Estonia's Jaan Kirsipuu was second, finishing ahead of Jeroen Blijlevens of the Netherlands, who won Friday's stage after Zabel was dropped to last place.

Cedric Vasseur held to the overall lead.

Two top Italian cyclists, Mario Cipollini and Ivan Gotti, became the latest to quit the race.

Cipollini, who won the first two stages and was the overall leader for four days, dropped out less than halfway through today's 1201/2 -mile run from Marennes to Bordeaux. He had injured a knee in a spill Friday.

Gotti, who won the Tour of Italy this year, did not even start today's stage because of a sprained neck.

Cipollini and Gotti joined Tony Rominger, Alex Zuelle and Yevgeny Berzin on the sidelines after the first week of the race that ends in Paris July 27. Rominger and Berzin broke collarbones in falls.

Also out of the race were Tom Steels and Djamolidin Abdoujaparov. Steels was ejected for throwing a water bottle at another rider in Friday's stage. Abdoujaparov tested positive for drugs after the second stage but the results became known Friday.