After having a fairly disastrous first week of the Tour - crashing into a spectator on stage one, going down on the sprint on stage two in Gent, and falling well behind the peloton on stage five, where he finished more than 18 minutes down, T-Mobile's Mark Cavendish had an excellent opportunity on Friday to battle his way to a stage win in the Tour de France.
The T-Mobile rider from the Isle of Man was brought into position by Bernard Eisel on the run-in to Bourg-en-Bresse, but then he disappeared from the screens. A couple of minutes after the peloton he rolled over the finish line where Cyclingnews caught up with him.
"I was on the best wheel, I was on Boonen's wheel," Cavendish said, "but then I had a bit of 'mech' in my front wheel, didn't I," Cavendish said, indicating his shredded front wheel. The young sprinter made contact with Tom Boonen's derailleur, which ruined his chances in the sprint, and even he admits he blew a unique chance. It is expected that the rather heavy sprinter will pull out during one of the next mountains stages to make sure he doesn't push himself too much at his tender age of 21, and in order to save form for the rest of the season.