Three categorised climbs weren’t enough to prevent the Tour de France’s sixth stage from being something of a procession to the final kilometre, where Mark Cavendish edged out Marcel Kittel and emerged victorious in the bunch sprint. Yukiya Arashiro and Jan Barta formed the day’s two-man breakaway, though they were reeled in without having ever looked likely to upset the fast finishers.
There were no surprises as Tony Martin romped to victory in the only time trial of this year’s Tour, while Vincenzo Nibali consolidated his lead at the top of the general classification heading into tomorrow’s Parisian procession. However, it was the French home heroes who really stole the show, with Jean-Christophe Peraud and Thibaut Pinot both guaranteeing podium finishes. Continue reading
Having completed the majority of the final climb on the first big mountain stage of this year’s Giro d’Italia on his own, Movistar’s Andrey Amador was not going to be denied with the finish line in sight. As NetApp’s Jan Barta sprinted past him in the last 150 metres, he tapped energy reserves which perhaps even he did not realise he possessed to find a second kick which propelled him to a richly deserved victory. Meanwhile a late attack by Ryder Hesjedal saw him reclaim the maglia rosa from Joaquim Rodriguez as the favourites rode a surprisingly conservative race.