Hivert claims French season opener

Saur-Sojasun claims GP Marseillaise

The newest Professional Continental team, Saur-Sojasun scored a major victory in the first French race of the season, the Gran Prix la Marseillaise. Jonathan Hivert sprinted to the win ahead of Vacansoleil's Johnny Hoogerland and Frenchman Samuel Dumoulin.

The traditional European season opener got underway in cold temperatures and strong winds, but thankfully clear skies. Perhaps seeking to generate some body heat, the riders were aggressive from the start, with numerous attacks going but no clear escape.

After 10km, Julien El Farès (Cofidis), Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) and Jussi Veikkanen (Française des Jeux) finally managed to break clear with Thomas de Gendt (Topsport Vlaanderen) chasing alone.

The peloton was happy to take a little rest, and soon the escapees gained a minute's lead, which ballooned into more than six minutes on the peloton by kilometre 30. Poor de Gendt wasn't making up any ground on the trio, and was in no man's land, two minutes ahead of the main bunch.

On the petit Galibier, de Gendt gave up and went back to the peloton, while El Fares, Westra and Veikkanen began losing time. El Fares took the sprint at the summit, but at the base of the next climb, the col de l'Espigoulier, the leaders' advantage had been reduced to 3:30, then 2:20 at the top where El Farès once again took the lead.

At km 100, the peloton was led by AG2R-La Mondiale and Vacansoleil had brought the gap down to 1:40. Having secured the mountains classification, El Farès sat up and left his two companions to soldier on alone.

With 30km to go, Westra and Veikkanen still maintained a sub-minute lead over a nervous peloton. On the final climb, the Gineste, Westra had 40 seconds and the attacks began in earnest.

With a furious pace on the climb, Westra was swept up by a lead group. The race came down to a sprint which was taken by Hivert ahead of Hoogerland, Dumoulin, Cummings and Di Gregorio

Results
1Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Saur-Sojasun3:34:02 
2Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
3Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
4Steven Cummings (GBr) Team Sky  
5Rémy Di Grégorio (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
6Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
7Martial Ricci Poggi (Fra) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago0:00:02 
8Brice Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team0:00:05 
9Kalle Kriit (Est) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
10Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team0:00:11 
11Nico Eeckhout (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
12Lisabeth Kenny (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
13Tony Gallopin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
14Loyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
15Alessandro Raisoni (Ita) Carmiooro - A Style  
16Romain Lemarchand (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
17Lilian Jegou (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
18Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
19Florian Vachon (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
20Jean-Luc Delpech (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
21Yann Huguet (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
22Jérome Baugnies (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
23Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
24Sven Renders (Bel) Verandas Willems  
25Mathieu Ladagnous (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
26Mathieu Sprick (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
27Tom Veelers (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
28Arnaud Molmy (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
29Valeriy Dmitriyev (Kaz) Astana  
30Bolat Raimbekov (Kaz) Astana  
31Renaud Dion (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
32Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
33Diego Alejandro Tamayo (Col) Carmiooro - A Style  
34Conor Mcconvey (Irl) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
35Julien Mazet (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
36Cédric Pineau (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
37Alexandre Geniez (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
38Rene Mandri (Est) AG2R La Mondiale  
39Michael Barry (Can) Team Sky  
40Steven Tronet (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
41Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana  
42Jonathan Thire (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
43Paidi O'brien (Irl) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
44Freddy Bichot (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
45Maxim Gourov (Kaz) Astana  
46Mathieu Halleguen (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
47Laurent Lefèvre (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
48Guillaume Faucon (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
49Jocelyn Bar (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
50David Boucher (Fra) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
51Morris Possoni (Ita) Team Sky  
52Laurent Beuret (Swi) Carmiooro - A Style  
53Laurent Pichon (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
54Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
55Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
56Nicolas Portal (Fra) Team Sky  
57John-Lee Augustyn (RSA) Team Sky  
58Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
59Mickael Larpe (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
60Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
61Eric Berthou (Fra) Carmiooro - A Style  
62Johan Coenen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
63Sandy Casar (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
64Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
65Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Team Sky  
66Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
67Björn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
68Remi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
69Sander Armee (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
70Guillaume Levarlet (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
71Frédéric Amorison (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
72Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
73Arnaud Gérard (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
74Julien Simon (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
75Johan Mombaerts (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
76Roy Curvers (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
77Yuri Trofimov (Rus) Bouygues Telecom  
78Amael Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
79Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
80David Le Lay (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
81Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
82Sébastien Fournet Fayard (Fra) Carmiooro - A Style  
83Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française Des Jeux  
84Dimitri Champion (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
85Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Team Sky  
86Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator0:00:22 
87Anthony Charteau (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
88Jérémy Galland (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
89Jean-Marc Marino (Fra) Saur-Sojasun  
90Cedric Coutouly (Fra) Saur-Sojasun0:00:27 
91Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly Team0:00:40 
92Paride Grillo (Ita) Carmiooro - A Style0:08:32 
93Oscar Pereiro Sio (Spa) Astana0:09:21 
HDBenoit Vaugrenard (Fra) Française Des Jeux0:13:46 
HDStefan Van Dijck (Ned) Verandas Willems0:15:45 
HDJonas Van Genechten (Bel) Verandas Willems  
HDJulien Loubet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
HDGrégory Habeaux (Bel) Verandas Willems  
HDThierry Hupond (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
HDNadir Haddou (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
HDYohann Gené (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
HDValentin Iglinskiy (Kaz) Astana  
HDGuillaume Bonnafond (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
HDSteve Houanard (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
HDMorgan Kneisky (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
HDSven Van Den Houtte (Bel) Verandas Willems  
HDMark Mcnally (GBr) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
HDAndry Grivko (Ukr) Astana  
HDBorut Bozic (Svk) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
HDJure Kocjan (Slo) Carmiooro - A Style  
HDEnrico Peruffo (Ita) Carmiooro - A Style  
HDGrégory Joseph (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
HDKris Boeckmans (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
HDEduardo Gonzalo Ramirez (Spa) Bretagne - Schuller  
HDStéphane Bonsergent (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
HDKoen De Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
HDBenoît Daeninck (Fra) Roubaix Lille Metropole  
HDSébastien Chavanel (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
HDMaxim De Busschere (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
HDStijn Minne (Irl) An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
HDYohan Offredo (Fra) Française Des Jeux  
DNFGuillaume Blot (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
DNFScott Davis (Aus) Astana  
DNFMathieu Claude (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
DNFPerrig Quemeneur (Fra) Bouygues Telecom  
DNFRobin Chaigneau (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
DNFNoan Lelarge (Fra) Bretagne - Schuller  
DNFSteven Caethoven (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
DNFHans Dekkers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
DNFBart Dockx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago  
DNFNiels Brouzes (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
DNFDimitri Le Boulch (Fra) Big Mat Auber 93  
DNFDieter Capelle (Bel) Verandas Willems  
DNFFabio Polazzi (Bel) Verandas Willems  
DNFJames Van Landschoot (Bel) Verandas Willems  
Petit Galibier - km 62.2
1Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne6pts
2Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team4 
3Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française Des Jeux2 
l'Espigoulier - km 87.1
1Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne6pts
2Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team4 
3Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française Des Jeux2 
Julhant les bastides - km 109.7
1Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne6pts
2Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team4 
3Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française Des Jeux2 
Mountains classification
1Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne14pts
2Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team12 
3Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française Des Jeux10 
Teams
1Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team10:42:22 
2Cofidis, le crédit en ligne  
3Saur - Sojasun10:42:28 
4Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator Pro Cycling  
5Française des jeux  
6Sky Pro Cycling Team  
7Landbouwkrediet10:42:30 
8Bretagne - Schuller10:42:39 
9An Post - Sean Kelly Team  
10Skil - Shimano  
11Big Mat - Auber 93  
12Roubaix Lille Metropole  
13Carmiooro - NGC  
14Astana  
15AG2R - La mondiale  
16BBox Bouygues Telecom  

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