Tour de France stage 3 - Finish line quotes

Cavendish, Renshaw, Greipel; Dumoulin on long, dull stage

Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) - Tour de France stage 3 winner

On the photo finish with Andre Greipel: "I thought I had it but you never know. I kind of knew I’d got it but you have to wait.

"We planned this stage, and I knew I’d have to come from behind. That’s why when Mark [Renshaw] went I wanted to be behind Greipel. Last year after I didn’t win the first sprint I was nervous and maybe went too soon in the following stages and I thought that might be the same for Greipel here.

"I knew I had to come from behind. I wanted to be behind Greipel to launch my sprint. He took me by surprise, but I'm happy I did it. My teammates were phenomenal. It's superb for Dimension Data. We came here we made our sponsors proud."

Mark Renshaw (Dimension Data) - lead-out man

On their lead-out train: "It’s working well, we won two stages but it’s not perfect. We have a limited team here, only five riders including Cavendish for the finish. Everybody knows their job. We have great riders in Edvald Boasson Hagen and [Reinardt] Janse Van Rensburg, so a great team and once the ball starts rolling then it just keeps going. He’s on a high and now the team is also."

On the sprint: "It was very difficult to judge. We had some tight corners and there was a crash with a couple of k to go. We knew we had to be in front, we knew we had to be coming with speed through the corner but it all worked out perfectly and he showed that he had good legs.

"We've taken two quick victories and that’s great but we don’t have a team like Etixx or Katusha. We don’t have guys to ride all day, especially not with that power and we have to wait until the final. I’m sure that there will be some teams who aren’t too happy with us, especially after coming through in the final kilometres and taking two victories."

André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) - second place

"I think the last 6km were quite messy with a lot of corners, there wasn’t a lot of organisation. It was really hard to stay together with the team and I just tried to stay somewhere near the front. With Jurgen Roelandts, in the end he brought me into a really good position and I think I just made one mistake and it was a kind of reflex to go into the biggest gear. If I had kept it in the gear I had then I think I would have made it.

"I think maybe everybody was a bit tired after yesterday, everybody was a bit nervous because we’ve had a lot of fighting in the bunch. It was not a stage to gain any points so everybody relaxed. I didn’t think that I wished for a faster stage than today."

Thomas Voeckler (Direct Energie) - breakaway rider

"I’m happy that Bryan [Coquard] was third. That’s the main satisfaction - as well as the French football team’s great performance last night. Bryan is the real story as far as Direct Energie is concerned today. There’s still a long way to Paris, so there’ll be more opportunities."

Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin)

On the long, slow stage: "These stages don't do anyone a favour. It will be the same again tomorrow. There is absolutely nothing to gain, perhaps tomorrow nobody will ride away.

"You get much nicer stages if you make them shorter. I believe that this kind of stage no longer belong in the Tour. Longer than 200 kilometers is so outdated. I do not see the use of it."

"In the final all the energy was still there, so it was still painful enough." (NOS.nl)

Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18) - still recovering from a stage 1 crash

"They went a lot easier, it was perfect for a recovery day - a long, six hour recovery day.  It was good to stay in the peloton for longer, and it was good for morale as well I suppose. There are a few harder days to come. I didn't feel better, but I was going harder and faster today, and I was in the peloton longer today, so it is positive.

Sondre Holst Enger (IAM Cycling) - surprise sixth on the stage

"It was fun, it was cool. It's always nice to sprint with the big guys. I'm happy with my position. I think I can work a little bit more on the sprint. I'm an OK sprinter."

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