Sprinters foiled in Perpignan

Voeckler once more the darling of France

Another day, another maillot jaune for Cancellara

Lethargy on behalf of the peloton resulted in the first successful breakaway Wednesday in Perpignan, and the re-emergence of Thomas Voeckler as the darling of the Tour de France.

Away in an escape for almost the whole stage from Le Cap D'Agde, 196.5 kilometres from their destination, it appeared at first that this was just going to be another misguided breakaway attempt, as so many of its kind are. And similar in difficulty to the third stage to La Grande-Motte that caught out all bar 28 riders, this time with the Tramontane wind blowing south from the Pyrenées, most believed the real race was behind in the peloton, not with the six hopefuls in front.

Some 60 kilometres from Perpignan, split the race did at the behest of Saxo Bank, the team of maillot jaune Fabian Cancellara, who retained his jersey for the fourth day in succession. But unlike the stage two days prior, all the GC favourites made the 40-man split, and by consequence, nothing came of it, leading to a regrouping 10 kilometres later.

So, as each kilometre ticked by en route to the southern French town that's positioned at the gateway to the Roussillon, it subsequently saw the chances of success tip in favour of the sextet who never gave up on their slim hopes, despite a tenuous 41-second lead some 30 kilometres from the finish.

Française des Jeux was best represented with two in the move, Anthony Geslin and Yauheni Hutarovich; the rest had one. Six kilometres out, Katusha's Mikhael Ignatiev went first, and Albert Timmer of Skil-Shimano followed. Lampre's Marcin Sapa was cooked and dropped off the pace. Along with the two FDJ riders, Voeckler of BBox Bouygues Telecom just covered the moves. Then they all came back.

A kilometre later Ignatiev went again, and this time Voeckler was the first to respond, then countering to go solo. Ever since he took the maillot jaune on the fifth stage of the 2004 Tour de France and stirred the French public's consciousness, exactly five years ago to this day, he'd been dreaming of reliving another such moment, even though he wasn't thinking about it right then.

Eleven seconds ahead of Ignatiev under the kilometre kite and strong enough to take the win, Voeckler continued to ride as if he could feel the Russian breathing down his neck, looking back far more than he needed to. Only 200 metres from the finish at the Place de Catalogne did the 30-year-old from Martinique look behind one last time, shake his head in disbelief, and smile a grin a mile wide.

Locked in ecstasy and agony, Voeckler said, "I didn't calculate any of this at all. I thought that it was impossible that we'd keep our advantage, because we only had 50 seconds left with 35 kilometres to go. I told myself, even if we get through, there are two riders from the same team, one of which is really fast in the sprint [referring to Hutarovich]. But once I got the gap, I went flat out, and when I got under the flamme rouge and still had 10 seconds, I started to believe it."

Leaderboard status quo, although Spartacus was ready to fight

Seven seconds later, Ignatiev was lucky to hold on for second, barely ahead of fast-charging maillot vert Mark Cavendish (Columbia-HTC), who claimed a 154-man field sprint for third from his eternal shadow at this year's Tour, Tyler Farrar of Garmin-Slipstream, leaving the GC leader board at status quo.

"From the first kilometre, I was ready [to split the peloton]," Cancellara told Cyclingnews, "but it did not really happen, because I was expecting to get more of the good wind, the right wind, to explode the whole peloton. Today felt like Belgium, like a small Gent-Wevelgem - small roads from the left and right, you don't know from where the wind is actually coming from.

"Everyone knew the wind would be from the coast when we passed those two climbs [near the middle of the stage]. We tried to be ready and put the hammer down when the moment came, and I pulled as long as I could. I wasn't disappointed, only happy that the whole team was there. I think I've shown for a couple of weeks now my form is here, and I feel I'm getting better and better into the race, because that's what counts for me now.

"I look forward to the Pyrenees and the next stages," he said, Cancellara increasingly becoming a protected rider at Saxo Bank as the days evolve.

Can Bouygues continue their excellent adventure?

How much did Voeckler think about the day that turned him from obscurity to top-of-the-pops five years prior at the 2004 Tour?

"I didn't think once about the fact that it was today," he said.

"I was told after the finish line. This morning, we only celebrated [directeur-sportif] Jean-René's birthday... but I didn't win for him today! Of course, I'm happy I won because the future of the team is not really safe, so this victory means a lot to us. If it can help the team to continue its adventure, then that's perfect. I remember five years ago, we got another sponsor after my ride in yellow, too," he said.

Picture perfect in Le Cap D'Agde

Starting on a tip of coastline near the town of Béziers, the 178-strong peloton got underway in perfect conditions from Le Cap D'Agde, already 27 degrees Celsius and breezy at the 12:45 p.m. départ réel.

After 29 kilometres, two breakaway groups of three combined to form a lead sextet, including Voeckler (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Geslin and Hutarovich (Française des Jeux), Sapa (Lampre-NGC), Ignatiev (Team Katusha) and Timmer (Skil-Shimano). When the peloton behind them decided to take to the call of nature, it became a definitive sign that the aforementioned six would be the break du jour.

Forty kilometres in, 8:45 was the distance between break and bunch, and that's as far as they got; the undulating mid-section of Wednesday's stage with a pair of Cat. 4 climbs after 112 and 115 kilometres, combined with the inevitable start of the chase-down, inexorably reduced the lead group's advantage.

Determined not to be caught out in the wind again, Astana and Saxo Bank began assembling their troops at the fore some 80 kilometres from the finish, and when the team of maillot jaune Cancellara started driving in the heavy Tramontane crosswinds, the peloton eventually split, a lead group of 40 forming at the head. This time, however, most of the GC favourites made the move - the exception being Rabobank's star climber Robert Gesink, who crashed hard before the mayhem and never recovered, X-rays later revealing he had broken his wrist and ruling him out of starting the following day.

A consequence of the crosswind craziness was that it all but chewed-up-and-spat-out the lead of the early escape. But when those driving at the front let up, realising there was nothing to gain, a regrouping occurred, the break's advantage went back out to a minute-and-a-half, and stood an even chance of surviving to Perpignan.

Française des Jeux held the upper hand with two in the move - but among them there was someone who'd been itching for a big win ever since he became a household name at the Tour de France, exactly five years ago.

For images of stage five click here

Full results
1Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom4:29:35 
2Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha0:00:07 
3Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC  
4Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
5Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram  
6Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Team Katusha  
7Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
8Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
9Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank  
10Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team  
11Angelo Furlan (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
12Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
13Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel  
14Kenny Robert van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
15Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
16Koldo Fernandez De Larrea (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
17Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana  
18Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
19Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas  
20Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC  
21Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step  
22Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas  
23Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto  
24Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank  
25Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank  
26Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
27Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha  
28Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank  
29Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step  
30Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
31Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
32Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française des Jeux  
33Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto  
34Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
35Brian Vandborg (Den) Liquigas  
36Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank  
37Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank  
38Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step  
39Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana  
40George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC  
41Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana  
42Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana  
43Brett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team  
44Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale  
45Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel  
46Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram  
47Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank  
48Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream  
49Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram  
50Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha  
51Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step  
52Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana  
53Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale  
54Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas  
55Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha  
56Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
57Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
58Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step  
59Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana  
60Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha  
61Peter Wrolich (Aut) Team Milram  
62Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank  
63Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas  
64Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team  
65Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas  
66Gustav Erik Larsson (Swe) Team Saxo Bank  
67Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Caisse d'Epargne  
68Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step  
69David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream  
70Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux  
71Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux  
72Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano  
73William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
74Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne  
75José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
76Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC  
77Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank  
78Andreas Klier (Ger) Cervelo Test Team  
79Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
80Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream  
81Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
82Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
83Grégory Rast (Swi) Astana  
84Oscar Pereiro Sio (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
85Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram  
86Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC  
87Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram  
88Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
89Luis Pasamontes Rodriguez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
90Eduardo Gonzalo Ramirez (Spa) Agritubel  
91Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux  
92Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
93David Lelay (Fra) Agritubel  
94Vladimir Efimkin (Rus) AG2R La Mondiale  
95Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
96Sebastian Lang (Ger) Silence - Lotto  
97Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
98Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC  
99Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC  
100Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
101David Arroyo Duran (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
102Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin - Slipstream  
103Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha  
104Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream  
105Bert Grabsch (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
106Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel  
107Cyril Dessel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
108Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
109Juan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
110Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank  
111Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Française des Jeux  
112Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
113Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha  
114Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram  
115Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux  
116Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank  
117Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
118David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
119Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
120Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
121Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
122Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
123Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas  
124Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank  
125Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) Team Saxo Bank  
126David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
127David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC  
128Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
129Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana  
130Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
131Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank  
132Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
133Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
134Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
135Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cervelo Test Team  
136Bingen Fernandez Bustinza (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
137Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
138José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale  
139Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel  
140Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel  
141Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC  
142Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne  
143Volodymir Gustov (Ukr) Cervelo Test Team  
144Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
145José Angel Gomez Marchante (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
146Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step  
147Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
148Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
149Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi  
150Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Astana  
151Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Team Katusha  
152Charles Wegelius (GBr) Silence - Lotto  
153Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
154Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
155Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
156Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux  
157Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step0:00:26 
158Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank0:00:29 
159Iñigo Cuesta Lopez De Castro (Spa) Cervelo Test Team  
160Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:00:33 
161Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano  
162Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:00:37 
163Sébastien Joly (Fra) Française des Jeux  
164Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux  
165Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel  
166Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Liquigas  
167Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence - Lotto  
168Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas  
169Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram  
170Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
171Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Columbia - HTC0:01:22 
172Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
173Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
174Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel  
175Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram0:01:47 
176Danny Pate (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:01:55 
177Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank0:09:35 
178Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank  
DNSPiet Rooijakkers (Ned) Skil-Shimano

 

 

Sprint 1 - Capestang, 40.5 km
1Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux6pts
2Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux4 
3Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2 
Sprint 2 - Saint-Jean-de-Barrou, 107.5 km
1Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC6pts
2Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux4 
3Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2 
Sprint 3 - Canet-en-Roussillon, 158.5 Km
1Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC6pts
2Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom4 
3Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2 
Finish - Perpignan, 196.5 km
1Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom35pts
2Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha30 
3Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC26 
4Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream24 
5Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram22 
6Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Team Katusha20 
7Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne19 
8Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale18 
9Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank17 
10Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team16 
11Angelo Furlan (Ita) Lampre - NGC15 
12Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne14 
13Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel13 
14Kenny Robert van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano12 
15Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano11 
16Koldo Fernandez De Larrea (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi10 
17Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana9 
18Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom8 
19Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas7 
20Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC6 
21Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step5 
22Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas4 
23Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto3 
24Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank2 
25Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank1 
Mountain 1 - Col de Feuilla (Cat. 4) 112.5 km
1Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux3pts
2Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2 
3Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom1 
Mountain 2 - Côte de Treilles (Cat. 4) 116.5 km
1Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux3pts
2Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2 
3Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano1 
Young riders
1Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha4:29:42 
2Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC  
3Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
4Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram  
5Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
6Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel  
7Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano  
8Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
9Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas  
10Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas  
11Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto  
12Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha  
13Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC  
14Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank  
15Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale  
16Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel  
17Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha  
18Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
19Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas  
20Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team  
21Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Caisse d'Epargne  
22Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano  
23Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC  
24Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram  
25Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto  
26Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Française des Jeux  
27Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC  
28Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank  
29Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne  
30Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom  
31Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano0:00:26 
32Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:00:30 
33Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram  
34Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:01:15 
35Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel  
36Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram0:01:40 
37Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank0:09:28 
Teams
1Bbox Bouygues Telecom13:28:59 
2Team Katusha0:00:07 
3Team Columbia - HTC  
4Liquigas  
5Team Saxo Bank  
6Garmin - Slipstream  
7Quick Step  
8Astana  
9Lampre - N.G.C  
10Team Milram  
11Skil-Shimano  
12AG2R-La Mondiale  
13Cervelo Test Team  
14Rabobank  
15Cofidis Le Credit En Ligne  
16Caisse d'Epargne  
17Agritubel  
18Silence - Lotto  
19Francaise Des Jeux  
20Euskaltel - Euskadi  
General classification after stage 5
1Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank15:07:49 
2Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana  
3Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana0:00:19 
4Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana0:00:23 
5Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana0:00:31 
6Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream0:00:38 
7Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana0:00:51 
8Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC0:00:52 
9David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:01:06 
10David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream0:01:07 
11Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Astana0:01:16 
12Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream  
13Gustav Erik Larsson (Swe) Team Saxo Bank0:01:22 
14Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC0:01:29 
15Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas0:01:31 
16Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC0:01:32 
17George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC0:01:36 
18Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana  
19Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas  
20Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank0:01:41 
21Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Slipstream0:01:46 
22Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank0:02:03 
23Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) Team Saxo Bank0:02:05 
24Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC0:02:16 
25Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank0:02:17 
26Brian Vandborg (Den) Liquigas0:02:25 
27Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha0:02:31 
28Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Liquigas0:02:32 
29Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Cervelo Test Team0:02:44 
30Nicki Sörensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank  
31Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas0:02:50 
32Bert Grabsch (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC0:02:51 
33Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:02:54 
34Luis Pasamontes Rodriguez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:02:56 
35Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto0:02:59 
36Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha  
37Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team  
38Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank0:03:00 
39Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha0:03:02 
40Oscar Pereiro Sio (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:03:03 
41Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cervelo Test Team0:03:05 
42Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Caisse d'Epargne0:03:06 
43Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team0:03:07 
44Volodymir Gustov (Ukr) Cervelo Test Team0:03:09 
45Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram0:03:11 
46Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:03:12 
47Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:13 
48Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:16 
49Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step0:03:17 
50José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
51Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
52Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha0:03:18 
53Luis León Sánchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne  
54Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:21 
55Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step0:03:23 
56Juan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:03:24 
57Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:03:25 
58Brett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team0:03:28 
59Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas0:03:32 
60Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC0:03:33 
61Stéphane Goubert (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:34 
62Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:03:36 
63Cyril Dessel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:38 
64Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:42 
65Vladimir Efimkin (Rus) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:44 
66Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:46 
67Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha0:03:47 
68Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas  
69Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:03:48 
70Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha0:03:51 
71Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank0:03:52 
72José Luis Arrieta Lujambio (Spa) AG2R La Mondiale  
73Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step0:03:55 
74Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank0:03:57 
75Sébastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step0:04:03 
76Rémi Pauriol (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:04:04 
77Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:04:09 
78Juan Manuel Garate Cepa (Spa) Rabobank  
79David Arroyo Duran (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:04:10 
80Sandy Casar (Fra) Française des Jeux0:04:16 
81Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Française des Jeux0:04:17 
82Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française des Jeux0:04:23 
83Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step0:04:25 
84Iñigo Cuesta Lopez De Castro (Spa) Cervelo Test Team0:04:27 
85Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram  
86Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC0:04:29 
87José Angel Gomez Marchante (Spa) Cervelo Test Team0:04:30 
88Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step  
89Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto0:04:31 
90Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram0:04:32 
91Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Rabobank  
92Alessandro Ballan (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:04:35 
93Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:04:40 
94Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank0:04:48 
95Amets Txurruka (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:04:49 
96Benoït Vaugrenard (Fra) Française des Jeux0:04:50 
97Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:04:51 
98Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Liquigas0:04:53 
99Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux0:04:54 
100Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux0:04:56 
101Koldo Fernandez De Larrea (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:04:57 
102Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram0:04:58 
103Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:04:59 
104Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:05:00 
105Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:05:02 
106Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas0:05:04 
107Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC0:05:05 
108David Moncoutie (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:05:08 
109Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank  
110Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram0:05:11 
111Sebastian Lang (Ger) Silence - Lotto0:05:17 
112Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:05:27 
113Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne  
114Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:05:28 
115Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:05:32 
116Joan Horrach Rippoll (Spa) Team Katusha0:05:34 
117Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux0:05:39 
118David Lelay (Fra) Agritubel0:05:46 
119Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:05:54 
120Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:05:57 
121William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:01 
122Bingen Fernandez Bustinza (Spa) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne0:06:03 
123Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:06:04 
124Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Agritubel0:06:11 
125Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram  
126David Loosli (Swi) Lampre - NGC0:06:15 
127Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank  
128Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:06:17 
129Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:18 
130Matthew Lloyd (Aus) Silence - Lotto0:06:19 
131Julian Dean (NZl) Garmin - Slipstream0:06:26 
132Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:27 
133Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel0:06:31 
134Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:06:33 
135Eduardo Gonzalo Ramirez (Spa) Agritubel0:06:35 
136Nicolas Vogondy (Fra) Agritubel0:06:40 
137Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC  
138Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:48 
139Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:49 
140Christophe Moreau (Fra) Agritubel0:06:54 
141Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:57 
142Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano0:07:07 
143Arnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne0:07:08 
144Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:07:13 
145Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:07:15 
146Sébastien Joly (Fra) Française des Jeux0:07:17 
147Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:07:18 
148Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha0:07:22 
149Sylvain Calzati (Fra) Agritubel0:07:24 
150Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano0:07:35 
151Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:07:51 
152Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano0:07:52 
153Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:07:56 
154Charles Wegelius (GBr) Silence - Lotto0:08:09 
155Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step  
156Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:08:16 
157Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:08:44 
158Kenny Robert van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano0:08:48 
159Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step0:08:52 
160Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram0:08:54 
161Grégory Rast (Swi) Astana0:09:12 
162Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram0:09:22 
163Peter Wrolich (Aut) Team Milram0:09:34 
164Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Team Katusha0:09:43 
165Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream0:09:54 
166Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:10:07 
167Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Columbia - HTC0:10:09 
168Angelo Furlan (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:10:40 
169Danny Pate (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:11:07 
170Daniele Righi (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:11:08 
171Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano0:11:09 
172Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:12:09 
173Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank0:13:04 
174Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank0:13:44 
175Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux0:14:35 
176Andreas Klier (Ger) Cervelo Test Team0:15:30 
177Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana0:19:31 
178Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi0:22:10 
Points classification
1Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC96pts
2Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team70 
3Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream54 
4Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram42 
5Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom41 
6Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel39 
7Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank37 
8Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne36 
9Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha34 
10Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale34 
11Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel31 
12Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom30 
13Angelo Furlan (Ita) Lampre - NGC29 
14Mark Renshaw (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC28 
15Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne27 
16Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Skil-Shimano26 
17Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano25 
18Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne24 
19Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC24 
20Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step22 
21Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi21 
22Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Team Katusha20 
23Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana19 
24William Bonnet (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom19 
25Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram19 
26Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale18 
27Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano18 
28Kenny Robert van Hummel (Ned) Skil-Shimano18 
29Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank17 
30George Hincapie (USA) Team Columbia - HTC16 
31Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram16 
32Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Astana15 
33Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha15 
34Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank14 
35Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne14 
36Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano14 
37Saïd Haddou (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom13 
38Marcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre - NGC12 
39Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana12 
40Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas11 
41Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team11 
42Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano11 
43Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux10 
44Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream10 
45Cyril Dessel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale10 
46Koldo Fernandez De Larrea (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi10 
47Alexandre Pichot (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom9 
48Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana8 
49Kim Kirchen (Lux) Team Columbia - HTC8 
50Cadel Evans (Aus) Silence - Lotto6 
51Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana5 
52Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team Columbia - HTC5 
53Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step5 
54Alan Perez Lezaun (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi5 
55Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas4 
56Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step4 
57Christophe Kern (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne4 
58Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française des Jeux4 
59Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto3 
60Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano3 
61Steven de Jongh (Ned) Quick Step3 
62Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa) Astana2 
63Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas2 
64Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Columbia - HTC1 
65Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank1 
66Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha1 
Mountains classification
1Jussi Veikkanen (Fin) Française des Jeux9pts
2Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC6 
3Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française des Jeux6 
4Koen de Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano6 
5Cyril Dessel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale5 
6Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel4 
7Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana3 
8Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne3 
9Marcus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram3 
10Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom3 
11Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha2 
12Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne2 
13Laurent Lefevre (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom2 
14Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream1 
15Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit en Ligne1 
16Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank1 
17Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano1 
Young rider classification
1Tony Martin (Ger) Team Columbia - HTC15:08:41 
2Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas0:00:39 
3Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas0:00:44 
4Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank0:00:49 
5Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas0:01:58 
6Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha0:02:10 
7Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por) Caisse d'Epargne0:02:14 
8Heinrich Haussler (Ger) Cervelo Test Team0:02:15 
9Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne0:02:20 
10Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:24 
11Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne0:02:25 
12Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC0:02:41 
13Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:02:44 
14Nikolai Troussov (Rus) Team Katusha0:02:55 
15Jérôme Coppel (Fra) Française des Jeux0:03:25 
16Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram0:03:35 
17Mickael Delage (Fra) Silence - Lotto0:03:39 
18Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto0:03:59 
19Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram0:04:06 
20Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre - NGC0:04:13 
21Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram0:04:19 
22Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Slipstream0:05:05 
23Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:05:25 
24Maxime Bouet (Fra) Agritubel0:05:39 
25Thierry Huppond (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:05:41 
26Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:05:57 
27Brice Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:06:23 
28Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:06:26 
29Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha0:06:30 
30Marco Bandiera (Ita) Lampre - NGC0:06:59 
31Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil-Shimano0:07:00 
32Yury Trofimov (Rus) BBOX Bouygues Telecom0:07:04 
33Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Skil-Shimano0:07:52 
34Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram0:08:30 
35Romain Feillu (Fra) Agritubel0:09:15 
36Albert Timmer (Ned) Skil-Shimano0:10:17 
37Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank0:12:12 
Teams classification
1Astana43:49:39 
2Team Saxo Bank0:02:33 
3Team Columbia - HTC0:02:45 
4Garmin - Slipstream0:03:05 
5Liquigas0:04:26 
6Cervelo Test Team0:05:25 
7Euskaltel - Euskadi0:05:34 
8Cofidis Le Credit En Ligne0:06:12 
9Team Milram0:06:33 
10Quick Step  
11Team Katusha0:06:36 
12AG2R-La Mondiale0:06:46 
13Silence - Lotto0:06:51 
14Caisse d'Epargne0:06:57 
15Rabobank0:07:27 
16Francaise Des Jeux0:07:29 
17Lampre - N.G.C0:08:24 
18Agritubel0:08:48 
19Bbox Bouygues Telecom0:09:34 
20Skil-Shimano0:10:08 

Full Specifications

Garmin-Slipstream M.I.A. in Le Cap D'Agde

The clock struck quarter-past midday Wednesday morning - just 10 minutes before the start of the fifth stage - and only 19 teams had signed in. Missing was the man who finished fourth in last year's Tour, Christian Vande Velde, and his Garmin-Slipstream coterie.

The Cyclingnews posse passed the Garmin-Slipstream convoy en route to the start in Le Cap D'Agde - a holiday town known for being the "nudist capital of the world", according to many travel guides - before encountering heavy traffic of their own, and only made the start with a half-hour to spare. So it was no surprise that their big blue and black bus and team vehicles got caught behind.

Tour organisers love to start on time as per the race itinerary, and it would have been interesting to see if the Tour would have waited for them or not. Maybe officials thought that they went for a Mediterranean skinny dip to freshen the legs before tackling the 196.5-kilometre stage to Perpignan.

Turns out, though, there was another exit they could've taken that would've got them to the start sooner than the one indicated on the Tour roadbook. Ironic that for a team part-sponsored by a GPS navigation company, they were the last team to arrive.

Bypassing the parking area and pulling up at the sign-in, all nine men scrambled out and hopped on their bikes just in time for the 12:25 départ.

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