Giro d'Italia: Mark Cavendish wins stage 12

Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) continued his dominance of the sprinter-friendly stages at the Giro d'Italia as he took the 100th victory of his career in Treviso. The Manx Missile claimed the third win of his 2013 Giro campaign, while French champion Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ) and Luka Mezgec (Argos-Shimano) rounded out the top three.

Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) finished comfortably in the field to retain his maglia rosa while the big loser of stage 12 was Bradley Wiggins (Sky), dropped with 40km to go on the descent off the day's final KOM and conceding more than three minutes by the time he reached the finish.

The break of the day formed soon after the peloton left the start city of Longarone, and the five escapees, Fabio Felline (Androni Giocattoli), Maxim Belkov (Katusha), Bert De Backer (Argos-Shimano) plus Vacansoleil-DCM teammates Marco Marcato and Maurits Lammertink, nearly stole the show from the sprinters. With the wet roads perhaps tempering the peloton's pursuit in the stage's endgame, the catch was ultimately made just 500 metres from the finish.

"We came here wanting to win every sprint, and so far, we’ve done it convincingly, leading the peloton from start to finish," said Cavendish. "Everyone worked to bring the breakaway back. Geert Steegmans was really controlled in the final part. In these difficult conditions, it is easy to get carried away too soon, but today our timing was perfect."

In addition to making a clean, three-out-of-three sweep of the sprint stages thus far at the Giro d'Italia, Cavendish was pleased to notch his milestone 100th career victory.

"Normally, these records are not so meaningful, but this one is special," said Cavendish. "It isn’t easy to win 100 races. I’ve been looking forward to this one. It’s good to do it at the Giro, and it’s good to do it the way we did it, because my teammates rode out of their skin from the start of the stage to the finish. The guys were incredible, every single one of them, and that makes it even more special."

A miserable day at the office

The peloton faced wet, dismal conditions at the start in Longarone, with a forecast of rain for the entire stage.

The break of the day established itself nearly from kilometre zero, with four riders going out on the attack: Fabio Felline (Androni Giocattoli), stage 9 winner Maxim Belkov (Katusha), Bert De Backer (Argos-Shimano) and Maurits Lammertink (Vacansoleil-DCM).

Perhaps wishing to put on a good showing following the news yesterday that Vacansoleil would cease sponsorship of the Dutch WorldTour squad at the end of this season, one day after DCM made a similar announcement, Marco Marcato (Vacansoleil-DCM), too, jumped from the peloton in pursuit of the break hoping to join his teammate Lammertink up the road.

The riders faced a short climb to the day's first intermediate sprint at Pieve d'Alpago (11km), with Belkov leading the break across, followed by Marcato at 16 seconds and the peloton at 1:30. The Vacansoleil-DCM Italian, in his first Giro d'Italia, made contact on the descent several kilometres later and the now five-man break set to work to perhaps spoil the anticipated field sprint finale in Treviso.

The break was given a rude reminder of racing on slick Italian tarmac, however, as Belkov lost traction and fell while leading the escape on a descent 34km into the stage and Marcato, Felline and Lammertink all crashed, too, in his wake. Only De Backer managed to stay upright, and the 29-year-old Belgian slowed to allow his four fallen companions to pick themselves up and regain contact.

While none of the riders in the break were general classification threats, with Felline best-placed overall in 61st at 54:22, nonetheless the escapees weren't given much freedom on this short, 134km route from Longarone to Treviso as today's parcours was one of the few stages suited to the peloton's sprinters.

Maglia rosa wearer Vincenzo Nibali and his Astana team were largely given a pass at the head of the peloton for the duration of the stage as the teams of the sprinters, particularly Cannondale and Omega Pharma-QuickStep, had their workhorses setting tempo to keep the break on a tight leash, keeping their advantage pegged at a manageable three minutes.

Under unremitting rain, vacillating between steady and heavy, the peloton began its chase of the break in earnest once the day's second and final KOM was negotiated, the category 4 Montello-S.M.d.Vittoria at 41km to go. The escape's advantage was reduced to two minutes at 20.5km remaining as the pace in the peloton ramped up, with one of the casualties Bradley Wiggins (Sky), who was dropped on the descent off the Montello-S.M.d.Vittoria KOM and trailed the maglia rosa group by one minute.

The break's lead was halved from two minutes to one minute 13km from the finish, and when they passed through the finish line to begin a 7.5km circuit in Treviso, their advantage stood at a tenuous 27 seconds. The large Wiggins group, meanwhile, passed through more than three minutes in arrears.

The slick conditions gave the break hope, however, as the five riders continued to share the load, but their effort fell just short as they were swept up inside 500m to go, setting the stage for a battle royale amongst the peloton's sprinters.

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Full Results
1Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step3:01:47
2Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJRow 1 - Cell 2
3Luka Mezgec (Slo) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 2 - Cell 2
4Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack LeopardRow 3 - Cell 2
5Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 4 - Cell 2
6Manuel Belletti (Ita) Ag2R La MondialeRow 5 - Cell 2
7Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 6 - Cell 2
8Sacha Modolo (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 7 - Cell 2
9Ioannis Tamouridis (Gre) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 8 - Cell 2
10Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 9 - Cell 2
11Davide Appollonio (Ita) Ag2R La MondialeRow 10 - Cell 2
12Kenny Dehaes (Bel) Lotto BelisolRow 11 - Cell 2
13Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin-SharpRow 12 - Cell 2
14Grega Bole (Slo) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 13 - Cell 2
15Daniele Bennati (Ita) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 14 - Cell 2
16Elia Viviani (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 15 - Cell 2
17Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 16 - Cell 2
18Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 17 - Cell 2
19Dominique Rollin (Can) FDJRow 18 - Cell 2
20Fabio Felline (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 19 - Cell 2
21Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar TeamRow 20 - Cell 2
22Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 21 - Cell 2
23Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 22 - Cell 2
24Rafael Andriato (Bra) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 23 - Cell 2
25Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) FDJRow 24 - Cell 2
26Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-SharpRow 25 - Cell 2
27Rafal Majka (Pol) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 26 - Cell 2
28Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 27 - Cell 2
29Patrick Gretsch (Ger) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 28 - Cell 2
30Jens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 29 - Cell 2
31Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 30 - Cell 2
32Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 31 - Cell 2
33Frederik Willems (Bel) Lotto BelisolRow 32 - Cell 2
34Maxim Belkov (Rus) KatushaRow 33 - Cell 2
35Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 34 - Cell 2
36Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 35 - Cell 2
37Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro TeamRow 36 - Cell 2
38Valerio Agnoli (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 37 - Cell 2
39Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 38 - Cell 2
40Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing TeamRow 39 - Cell 2
41Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack LeopardRow 40 - Cell 2
42Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 41 - Cell 2
43Francis De Greef (Bel) Lotto BelisolRow 42 - Cell 2
44Danilo Hondo (Ger) RadioShack LeopardRow 43 - Cell 2
45Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing TeamRow 44 - Cell 2
46Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto BelisolRow 45 - Cell 2
47Damiano Caruso (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 46 - Cell 2
48Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 47 - Cell 2
49Robert Gesink (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 48 - Cell 2
50Maarten Wynants (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 49 - Cell 2
51Sergio Luis Henao Montoya (Col) Sky ProcyclingRow 50 - Cell 2
52Gert Dockx (Bel) Lotto BelisolRow 51 - Cell 2
53Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky ProcyclingRow 52 - Cell 2
54Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 53 - Cell 2
55Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 54 - Cell 2
56Yury Trofimov (Rus) KatushaRow 55 - Cell 2
57Pieter Weening (Ned) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 56 - Cell 2
58Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 57 - Cell 2
59Pavel Brutt (Rus) KatushaRow 58 - Cell 2
60Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 59 - Cell 2
61Francis Mourey (Fra) FDJRow 60 - Cell 2
62Guillaume Bonnafond (Fra) Ag2R La MondialeRow 61 - Cell 2
63Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Ag2R La MondialeRow 62 - Cell 2
64Egoi Martinez De Esteban (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 63 - Cell 2
65Diego Rosa (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 64 - Cell 2
66Manuele Boaro (Ita) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 65 - Cell 2
67Paolo Longo Borghini (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 66 - Cell 2
68Giairo Ermeti (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 67 - Cell 2
69José Herrada Lopez (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 68 - Cell 2
70Evgeny Petrov (Rus) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 69 - Cell 2
71Juan Manuel Garate (Spa) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 70 - Cell 2
72Nelson Filipe Santos Simoes Oliveira (Por) RadioShack LeopardRow 71 - Cell 2
73Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 72 - Cell 2
74Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) RadioShack LeopardRow 73 - Cell 2
75Tiziano Dall'Antonia (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 74 - Cell 2
76Oscar Gatto (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 75 - Cell 2
77Hubert Dupont (Fra) Ag2R La MondialeRow 76 - Cell 2
78Alessandro Vanotti (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 77 - Cell 2
79Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 78 - Cell 2
80Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 79 - Cell 2
81Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-MeridaRow 80 - Cell 2
82Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 81 - Cell 2
83Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 82 - Cell 2
84Darwin Atapuma Hurtado (Col) ColombiaRow 83 - Cell 2
85Carlos Alberto Betancur Gomez (Col) Ag2R La MondialeRow 84 - Cell 2
86Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Lotto BelisolRow 85 - Cell 2
87Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 86 - Cell 2
88Petr Ignatenko (Rus) Katusha0:00:54
89Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 88 - Cell 2
90Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team0:01:07
91Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Lotto BelisolRow 90 - Cell 2
92Alan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 91 - Cell 2
93Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin-SharpRow 92 - Cell 2
94Julien Vermote (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 93 - Cell 2
95Adam Blythe (GBr) BMC Racing TeamRow 94 - Cell 2
96Michal Golas (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 95 - Cell 2
97Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 96 - Cell 2
98George Bennett (NZl) RadioShack LeopardRow 97 - Cell 2
99Alex Dowsett (GBr) Movistar TeamRow 98 - Cell 2
100Hayden Roulston (NZl) RadioShack LeopardRow 99 - Cell 2
101Cayetano José Sarmiento Tunarrosa (Col) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 100 - Cell 2
102Alessandro Proni (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 101 - Cell 2
103Leonardo Fabio Duque (Col) ColombiaRow 102 - Cell 2
104Bruno Pires (Por) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 103 - Cell 2
105Jackson Rodriguez (Ven) Androni GiocattoliRow 104 - Cell 2
106Jorge Azanza Soto (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 105 - Cell 2
107Simone Stortoni (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 106 - Cell 2
108Cameron Wurf (Aus) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 107 - Cell 2
109Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col) Lampre-MeridaRow 108 - Cell 2
110Svein Tuft (Can) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 109 - Cell 2
111Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 110 - Cell 2
112Dmitry Kozontchuk (Rus) KatushaRow 111 - Cell 2
113Thomas Damuseau (Fra) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 112 - Cell 2
114Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) KatushaRow 113 - Cell 2
115Luca Paolini (Ita) KatushaRow 114 - Cell 2
116Danilo Di Luca (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 115 - Cell 2
117Nicola Boem (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 116 - Cell 2
118Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Sky Procycling0:03:17
119Xabier Zandio Echaide (Spa) Sky ProcyclingRow 118 - Cell 2
120Dario Cataldo (Ita) Sky ProcyclingRow 119 - Cell 2
121Christian Knees (Ger) Sky ProcyclingRow 120 - Cell 2
122Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky ProcyclingRow 121 - Cell 2
123Danny Pate (USA) Sky ProcyclingRow 122 - Cell 2
124Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto BelisolRow 123 - Cell 2
125Brian Bulgac (Ned) Lotto BelisolRow 124 - Cell 2
126Rob Ruijgh (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 125 - Cell 2
127Laurent Pichon (Fra) FDJRow 126 - Cell 2
128Johan Le Bon (Fra) FDJRow 127 - Cell 2
129Martijn Keizer (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 128 - Cell 2
130Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 129 - Cell 2
131Fabio Andres Duarte Arevalo (Col) ColombiaRow 130 - Cell 2
132Mattia Gavazzi (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 131 - Cell 2
133Miguel Angel Rubiano Chavez (Col) Androni GiocattoliRow 132 - Cell 2
134Anthony Roux (Fra) FDJRow 133 - Cell 2
135Serge Pauwels (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 134 - Cell 2
136Stef Clement (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 135 - Cell 2
137Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Movistar TeamRow 136 - Cell 2
138Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 137 - Cell 2
139Vladimir Gusev (Rus) KatushaRow 138 - Cell 2
140Eros Capecchi (Ita) Movistar TeamRow 139 - Cell 2
141Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 140 - Cell 2
142Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 141 - Cell 2
143Fabio Aru (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 142 - Cell 2
144Pim Ligthart (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 143 - Cell 2
145Paul Martens (Ger) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 144 - Cell 2
146Gorka Verdugo Marcotegui (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 145 - Cell 2
147Kristijan Durasek (Cro) Lampre-MeridaRow 146 - Cell 2
148Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 147 - Cell 2
149Christian Meier (Can) Orica-GreenEdgeRow 148 - Cell 2
150Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 149 - Cell 2
151Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 150 - Cell 2
152Matteo Rabottini (Ita) Vini Fantini-Selle ItaliaRow 151 - Cell 2
153Ivan Santaromita (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 152 - Cell 2
154Iljo Keisse (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 153 - Cell 2
155Jesse Sergent (NZl) RadioShack LeopardRow 154 - Cell 2
156Tiago Machado (Por) RadioShack LeopardRow 155 - Cell 2
157Willem Wauters (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 156 - Cell 2
158Daniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 157 - Cell 2
159Cristiano Salerno (Ita) Cannondale Pro CyclingRow 158 - Cell 2
160Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 159 - Cell 2
161Thomas Danielson (USA) Garmin-SharpRow 160 - Cell 2
162Ben Gastauer (Lux) Ag2R La MondialeRow 161 - Cell 2
163Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni GiocattoliRow 162 - Cell 2
164Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 163 - Cell 2
165Gianluca Brambilla (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick StepRow 164 - Cell 2
166Rory Sutherland (Aus) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 165 - Cell 2
167Fredrik Carl Wilhelm Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro TeamRow 166 - Cell 2
168Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Argos-ShimanoRow 167 - Cell 2
169Stephen Cummings (GBr) BMC Racing TeamRow 168 - Cell 2
170Peter Stetina (USA) Garmin-SharpRow 169 - Cell 2
171Mads Christensen (Den) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 170 - Cell 2
172Marco Canola (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 171 - Cell 2
173Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Sky ProcyclingRow 172 - Cell 2
174David Millar (GBr) Garmin-SharpRow 173 - Cell 2
175Thomas Dekker (Ned) Garmin-SharpRow 174 - Cell 2
176Andrey Zeits (Kaz) Astana Pro Team0:04:24
177Francesco Manuel Bongiorno (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 176 - Cell 2
178Ricardo Mestre (Por) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 177 - Cell 2
179Robert Vrecer (Slo) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 178 - Cell 2
180Edoardo Zardini (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 179 - Cell 2
181Nathan Haas (Aus) Garmin-Sharp0:04:27
182Jack Bobridge (Aus) Blanco Pro Cycling TeamRow 181 - Cell 2
183Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-SharpRow 182 - Cell 2
184Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 183 - Cell 2
185Miguel Minguez Ayala (Spa) Euskaltel-EuskadiRow 184 - Cell 2
186Stefano Locatelli (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF InoxRow 185 - Cell 2
187Robinson Eduardo Chalapud Gomez (Col) ColombiaRow 186 - Cell 2
188Jarlinson Pantano (Col) ColombiaRow 187 - Cell 2
189Wilson Alexander Marentes Torres (Col) Colombia0:12:18
190Edwin Alcibiades Avila Vanegas (Col) Colombia0:14:21
DNSMatti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo-TinkoffRow 190 - Cell 2
DNFDalivier Ospina Navarro (Col) ColombiaRow 191 - Cell 2
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Points
1Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step25pts
2Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ20Row 1 - Cell 3
3Luka Mezgec (Slo) Team Argos-Shimano16Row 2 - Cell 3
4Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) RadioShack Leopard14Row 3 - Cell 3
5Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge12Row 4 - Cell 3
6Manuel Belletti (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale10Row 5 - Cell 3
7Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-Merida9Row 6 - Cell 3
8Sacha Modolo (Ita) Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox8Row 7 - Cell 3
9Ioannis Tamouridis (Gre) Euskaltel-Euskadi7Row 8 - Cell 3
10Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar Team6Row 9 - Cell 3
11Davide Appollonio (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale5Row 10 - Cell 3
12Kenny Dehaes (Bel) Lotto Belisol4Row 11 - Cell 3
13Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin-Sharp3Row 12 - Cell 3
14Grega Bole (Slo) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team2Row 13 - Cell 3
15Daniele Bennati (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff1Row 14 - Cell 3
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Mountain 1 - Muro di Ca' del Poggio (Cat . 4) 52.3km
1Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team3pts
2Maxim Belkov (Rus) Katusha2Row 1 - Cell 3