By Susan Westemeyer
Italian Daniele Bennati powered to his first win since the Giro d'Italia on the Eneco Tour's third stage. The Liquigas sprinter bested stage one winner Tom Boonen and Belgian champion Jürgen Roelandts to slip into the overall lead thanks to the ten second time bonus on the line ahead of Team Columbia's Edvald Boasson Hagen.
The morning's leader José Iván Gutierrez (Caisse d'Epargne) gave up his hold on the overall at the final intermediate sprint, where the young Norwegian Boasson Hagen took three bonus seconds.
Bennati was happy with his victory over Boonen. "I am proud because it is the first time that I have beaten him," the Italian said. "What my team did at the end was impressive."
"This gives me confidence for the Vuelta, especially because I know I will face Boonen and Quick Step there," he added.
Boonen took his loss philosophically, saying that once again his lead-out train was not well-coordinated, and ended up two men short at the end. "Winning is not the only thing, it is also important to have a good feeling," he said. "My sprint is good. But the mechanism must get better."
Continue to the full report, results and photos.