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Close call for Cooke at Tour de Suisse

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Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) raises his arms to celebrate

Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) raises his arms to celebrate
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Baden Cooke (GreenEdge)

Baden Cooke (GreenEdge)
(Image credit: Isabelle Duchesne)
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Baden Cooke and Svein Tuft (GreenEdge).

Baden Cooke and Svein Tuft (GreenEdge).
(Image credit: Barry Ryan)
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Baden Cooke from Victoria will be handing down a wealth of knowledge to GreenEdge youngsters during season 2012.

Baden Cooke from Victoria will be handing down a wealth of knowledge to GreenEdge youngsters during season 2012.
(Image credit: Shane Goss/licoricegallery.com)

Orica GreenEdge finished with two riders in the top five on stage 3 of the Tour de Suisse, with Baden Cooke only just being pipped on the finish line in Aarberg by Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale).

Michael Albasini dragged Cooke and Allan Davis to the final kilometre of the twisty finish with Cooke unconcerned about his own chances at the finish.

"Today I was focused on getting Allan to the line," said Cooke on the Orica GreenEdge website. "It wasn't my job to do the sprint today but because of the corners and the skinny roads, doing the lead out lent itself to be on the front. I realized in the last kilometer that Allan had lost my wheel. I was in a good position, so I went for it. I nearly held it to the line.

"The day was tough from the start of the chase," Cooke explained. "We spent a lot of energy pulling back the break. Unfortunately, a lot of the other sprint teams choose not to contribute to the chase, so we were forced to sacrifice riders on the front that we would have liked to have saved for the finish. We didn't hold back today. We took the race by the scruff of the neck to have a chance in the sprint."

"Because I wasn't focused on myself today, I wasn't thinking how to win this particular sprint," explained Cooke. "My only focus was delivering Allan to the line. When I realized I was in a good position, I just charged for the line, and Sagan was able to come around me in the end."

Davis finished fifth, after Sagan, Cooke and Ben Swift (Sky) left a gap in their charge for the line.