T-Mobile's Roger Hammond was supposed to help his young teammate, sprinter Mark Cavendish, in a sprint finish at the GP d'Ouverture La Marseillaise, but it didn't work out that way. Only 10 km into the race, Hammond joined an escaped group of 14 riders which managed to stay away to the end.
Hammond himself was unable to sprint for the win, because he crashed on a small climb shortly before the finish. He was able to finish ninth.
"Roger is in good form and proved his credentials as a leading figure in the team," Directeur Sportif Alan Peiper said on the team's website, www.t-mobile-team.com. "Of course he's annoyed about today's bad luck, but he'll put that behind him over the next days at the Star of Bessège where he'll show his young compatriot Mark Cavendish the way to the front of the peloton."