Cavendish wins stage 6 of Tirreno-Adriatico

Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma Quick Step) finished off a consummate lead-out display from his team to win stage 6 of Tirreno-Adriatico, a 189-kilometre test from Bucchianico to Porto Sant'Elpidio.

The British sprinter crossed the line virtually uncontested after a crash took out several of his main rivals inside the final two kilometres as Alessandro Petacchi hung on for a distant second with Peter Sagan (Cannondale) in third.

Race leader Alberto Contador (Tinkoff Saxo) came through the stage unscathed with his healthy 2:08 lead over Nairo Quintana (Movistar) intact.

The stage win marked Cavendish's second race win of the season and provides a welcome boost ahead of Milan-San Remo.

In truth, Omega Pharma Quick Step timed their move for the line to perfection, hitting the front inside the final kilometres after Cannondale had split the race early on. Sagan's men had put the field under pressure after Marcel Kittel (Giant Shimano) showed signs of weakness on the first climb of the day.

The move led to a frantic pace as the race entered the final 50 kilometres as the sprinters jostled for safety and a chance to take a win with tomorrow’s time trial left to come.

Up ahead and unaware of Kittel's problems were a four-man group of Peter Kennaugh (Sky), Steve Morabito (BMC), Jack Bauer (Garmin-Sharp) and Cesare Benedetti (NetApp-Endura). Having broken clear on the first climb of the day they quickly established a lead of over a minute. Vincent Jerome (Europcar) had briefly made it into the move but he was dispatched with on the climb itself but despite the loss the four leaders had 5:30 over the bunch after 45 kilometres.

The cracks in Kittel's armour were apart and Cannondale were keen to exploit the German's weak points. They increased the pace on the Sant'Elpidio climb, as the four leaders held a gap of 1:36 over the peloton.

Kittel quickly found himself a minute down but help was soon at hand with his entire team deployed to his aid as he looked to regain contact for a sprint that would have truly suited him.

Cannondale were intent on distancing the German and they were encouraged when Andre Greipel offered them up several of his workers in assistance. With Sam Bennett in his group, Kittel found some help via NetApp, and the lead gently began to shrink inside the final 20 kilometres.

Bauer, aware that the break was starting to slow, jumped clear and although Kennaugh and Morabito were able to latch on, Benedetti was quickly dropped.

Kennaugh slipped back soon after as the Lotto and Cannondale field had the break in its sights and as they crossed the finish for the penultimate lap Kittel's group is at 33 seconds.

It was as close as the German would come, however, with Omega Pharma Quick Step soon starting to dictate the pace as Lotto, FDJ and Movistar vied for control of the peloton.

There was a brief blast from Gilbert as he looked to test his form ahead of San Remo, but Omega Pharma Quick Step now looked at their best. Tony Martin handed over to previous race leader Michal Kwiatkowski and with one tricky right-hand corner to go, Cavendish looked on course.

The crash certainly helped him. Greipel, who was relatively far back to start with, lost several of his teammates and was left with an impossible task to get back on terms, as several other sprinters were forced to burn matches from too far back.

By the time Cavendish came around Petacchi's wheel, he already had a huge gap on the rest of the field. Petacchi even had time to sit up and celebrate before realising that second place could be his before Sagan crossed the line for third.

Results

Swipe to scroll horizontally
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team4:16:15Row 0 - Cell 3
2Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling TeamRow 1 - Cell 2 Row 1 - Cell 3
3Peter Sagan (Svk) CannondaleRow 2 - Cell 2 Row 2 - Cell 3
4Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ.frRow 3 - Cell 2 Row 3 - Cell 3
5Tony Hurel (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 4 - Cell 2 Row 4 - Cell 3
6Robert Wagner (Ger) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 5 - Cell 2 Row 5 - Cell 3
7Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN - QhubekaRow 6 - Cell 2 Row 6 - Cell 3
8Bartosz Huzarski (Pol) Team NetApp - EnduraRow 7 - Cell 2 Row 7 - Cell 3
9Mark Renshaw (Aus) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling TeamRow 8 - Cell 2 Row 8 - Cell 3
10Davide Appollonio (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 9 - Cell 2 Row 9 - Cell 3
11Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team EuropcarRow 10 - Cell 2 Row 10 - Cell 3
12Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team Sky0:00:06Row 11 - Cell 3
13Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica GreenedgeRow 12 - Cell 2 Row 12 - Cell 3
14Ian Stannard (GBr) Team SkyRow 13 - Cell 2 Row 13 - Cell 3
15Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Bardiani-CSFRow 14 - Cell 2 Row 14 - Cell 3
16Benjamin King (USA) Garmin SharpRow 15 - Cell 2 Row 15 - Cell 3
17Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa) Trek Factory RacingRow 16 - Cell 2 Row 16 - Cell 3
18Michele Scarponi (Ita) Astana Pro TeamRow 17 - Cell 2 Row 17 - Cell 3
19Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Giant-ShimanoRow 18 - Cell 2 Row 18 - Cell 3
20Alexandr Kolobnev (Rus) Team KatushaRow 19 - Cell 2 Row 19 - Cell 3
21Julian David Arredondo Moreno (Col) Trek Factory RacingRow 20 - Cell 2 Row 20 - Cell 3
22Heinrich Haussler (Aus) IAM CyclingRow 21 - Cell 2 Row 21 - Cell 3
23Yoann Offredo (Fra) FDJ.frRow 22 - Cell 2 Row 22 - Cell 3
24Alexandre Geniez (Fra) FDJ.frRow 23 - Cell 2 Row 23 - Cell 3
25Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 24 - Cell 2 Row 24 - Cell 3
26Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff-SaxoRow 25 - Cell 2 Row 25 - Cell 3
27Diego Ulissi (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 26 - Cell 2 Row 26 - Cell 3
28Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar TeamRow 27 - Cell 2 Row 27 - Cell 3
29Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Team KatushaRow 28 - Cell 2 Row 28 - Cell 3
30André Greipel (Ger) Lotto BelisolRow 29 - Cell 2 Row 29 - Cell 3
31Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 30 - Cell 2 Row 30 - Cell 3
32Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 31 - Cell 2 Row 31 - Cell 3
33Dominik Nerz (Ger) BMC Racing TeamRow 32 - Cell 2 Row 32 - Cell 3
34Daniele Bennati (Ita) Tinkoff-SaxoRow 33 - Cell 2 Row 33 - Cell 3
35Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 34 - Cell 2 Row 34 - Cell 3
36Bram Tankink (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 35 - Cell 2 Row 35 - Cell 3
37Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Trek Factory RacingRow 36 - Cell 2 Row 36 - Cell 3
38Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin SharpRow 37 - Cell 2 Row 37 - Cell 3
39Ben Hermans (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 38 - Cell 2 Row 38 - Cell 3
40Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Garmin SharpRow 39 - Cell 2 Row 39 - Cell 3
41Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) Team KatushaRow 40 - Cell 2 Row 40 - Cell 3
42Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Team SkyRow 41 - Cell 2 Row 41 - Cell 3
43Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro TeamRow 42 - Cell 2 Row 42 - Cell 3
44Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro TeamRow 43 - Cell 2 Row 43 - Cell 3
45Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 44 - Cell 2 Row 44 - Cell 3
46Andrey Amador Bakkazakova (CRc) Movistar TeamRow 45 - Cell 2 Row 45 - Cell 3
47Marcel Wyss (Swi) IAM CyclingRow 46 - Cell 2 Row 46 - Cell 3
48Matteo Montaguti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 47 - Cell 2 Row 47 - Cell 3
49Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) MTN - QhubekaRow 48 - Cell 2 Row 48 - Cell 3
50Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Team KatushaRow 49 - Cell 2 Row 49 - Cell 3
51Hayden Roulston (NZl) Trek Factory RacingRow 50 - Cell 2 Row 50 - Cell 3
52Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Trek Factory RacingRow 51 - Cell 2 Row 51 - Cell 3
53Nicolas Roche (Irl) Tinkoff-SaxoRow 52 - Cell 2 Row 52 - Cell 3
54Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Giant-ShimanoRow 53 - Cell 2 Row 53 - Cell 3
55Marco Canola (Ita) Bardiani-CSFRow 54 - Cell 2 Row 54 - Cell 3
56Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 55 - Cell 2 Row 55 - Cell 3
57Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bardiani-CSFRow 56 - Cell 2 Row 56 - Cell 3
58Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 57 - Cell 2 Row 57 - Cell 3
59Maxim Iglinskiy (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 58 - Cell 2 Row 58 - Cell 3
60Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 59 - Cell 2 Row 59 - Cell 3
61Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Trek Factory RacingRow 60 - Cell 2 Row 60 - Cell 3
62Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 61 - Cell 2 Row 61 - Cell 3
63Ivan Santaromita (Ita) Orica GreenedgeRow 62 - Cell 2 Row 62 - Cell 3
64Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 63 - Cell 2 Row 63 - Cell 3
65Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 64 - Cell 2 Row 64 - Cell 3
66Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 65 - Cell 2 Row 65 - Cell 3
67Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani-CSFRow 66 - Cell 2 Row 66 - Cell 3
68Mickael Delage (Fra) FDJ.frRow 67 - Cell 2 Row 67 - Cell 3
69Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 68 - Cell 2 Row 68 - Cell 3
70Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Tinkoff-SaxoRow 69 - Cell 2 Row 69 - Cell 3
71Nick Nuyens (Bel) Garmin SharpRow 70 - Cell 2 Row 70 - Cell 3
72Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 71 - Cell 2 Row 71 - Cell 3
73Vincent Jerome (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 72 - Cell 2 Row 72 - Cell 3
74Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 73 - Cell 2 Row 73 - Cell 3
75Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 74 - Cell 2 Row 74 - Cell 3
76Angel Vicioso Arcos (Spa) Team KatushaRow 75 - Cell 2 Row 75 - Cell 3
77Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling TeamRow 76 - Cell 2 Row 76 - Cell 3
78Roger Kluge (Ger) IAM CyclingRow 77 - Cell 2 Row 77 - Cell 3
79Stijn Devolder (Bel) Trek Factory RacingRow 78 - Cell 2 Row 78 - Cell 3
80Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro TeamRow 79 - Cell 2 Row 79 - Cell 3
81Oscar Gatto (Ita) CannondaleRow 80 - Cell 2 Row 80 - Cell 3
82Ivan Basso (Ita) CannondaleRow 81 - Cell 2 Row 81 - Cell 3
83Manuele Mori (Ita) Lampre-MeridaRow 82 - Cell 2 Row 82 - Cell 3
84Marc Goos (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 83 - Cell 2 Row 83 - Cell 3
85Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro TeamRow 84 - Cell 2 Row 84 - Cell 3
86Kristijan Koren (Slo) CannondaleRow 85 - Cell 2 Row 85 - Cell 3
87Jay Robert Thomson (RSA) MTN - QhubekaRow 86 - Cell 2 Row 86 - Cell 3
88Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling TeamRow 87 - Cell 2 Row 87 - Cell 3
89William Bonnet (Fra) FDJ.frRow 88 - Cell 2 Row 88 - Cell 3
90Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 89 - Cell 2 Row 89 - Cell 3
91Bjorn Thurau (Ger) Team EuropcarRow 90 - Cell 2 Row 90 - Cell 3
92Dmitry Kozontchuk (Rus) Team KatushaRow 91 - Cell 2