No, a 2.6.8 kernel is available as a boot option for the installer. It's also the default on several architectures (powerpc, amd64, hppa). Sure, you can choose to install two kernels and get a choice in the resulting grub boot menu, but that is not default behavior.
You are right. I noticed that the GRUB menu was automatically populated with several other entries of distributions that I had installed on the same machine, including some with the 2.6 kernels, so I wrongly assumed, without looking at the menu very carefully, that a 2.6 kernel was installed by sarge. My mistake - sorry about that.
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