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Cavendish, Hushovd relegated in Tour de France sprint

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Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad) before the start

Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad) before the start (Image credit: Robert Lampard)
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Thor Hushovd in yellow

Thor Hushovd in yellow (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)

Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad) and Thor Hushovd (Garmin-Cervelo) have both been disqualified from the intermediate sprint on stage 3 of the Tour de France after making contact in the mid-race points classification battle.

Cavendish had crossed the line in sixth, leading the bunch over the line behind a break of five riders. However, the race commissars deemed both his and Hushovd’s actions inappropriate.

Judges said the Norwegian deviated from his racing line, while Cavendish clearly used his head either to keep upright or fend off Hushovd.

HTC-Highroad's Rolf Aldag confirmed the news to Cyclingnews. “The chief commissar confirmed the news and talked to Allan Peiper. He said that Thor and Cav were disqualified. Thor lost his line but Cav can’t use his head."

Aldag confirmed that HTC-Highroad would not appeal.

“There is no appeal. I spent three hours talking to the commissars last year when they disqualified Renshaw. Once they make up their mind that’s it.”

The incident dropped Hushovd from third to fourth in the race for the green jersey, which now rests atop the shoulders of Spaniard Jose Joaquin Rojas (Movistar).