Tour de France: Gerrans wins final Corsican stage

Simon Gerrans (Orica-GreenEdge) has the uncanny knack of being in the right place at the right time and the Australian demonstrated that gift once again on stage 3 of the Tour de France, as he denied no less a figure than Peter Sagan victory in a tense sprint in Calvi, while Jan Bakelants (RadioShack-Leopard) retained the yellow jersey.

At the end of a rugged day of racing along Corsica’s sinuous coastal roads, and with the peloton shorn of its purest sprinters, it seemed inevitable that Sagan would get off the mark at this year’s Tour but instead it was Gerrans who claimed the win by a matter of inches, thanks in no small part to an expert lead-out from Daryl Impey.

Gerrans came off Impey’s wheel inside the final 200 metres and succeeded in holding off the closing Sagan when they both hurled themselves at the finish line, while José Joaquin Rojas (Movistar) was a distant third ahead of Mikal Kwiatowski (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) and world champion Philippe Gilbert (BMC).

“I could see Sagan under my shoulder and then I could sense him coming up beside me, so I just threw for the line. It must have been close because neither of us knew who had won,” said Gerrans, who claimed Orica-GreenEdge’s first ever Tour de France stage win. “Normally I would lead Daryl out, but we reversed roles today. I had pin-pointed this stage and he did a great job.”

Sagan looked to put a positive spin on his afternoon by pointing to the fact that he has now taken possession of the green jersey, but his expression when a television crew offered to show him a replay of the sprint in the mixed zone afterwards betrayed his disappointment.

And well might he grimace. With just Alessandro De Marchi for company in the leading group, Sagan managed to muscle his way to the front inside the final kilometre but he found himself sitting in second wheel far too early, with more than 500 metres still to race. Although Sagan was able to slip onto the back of the Orica-GreenEdge train on the final right-hand bend, he couldn’t summon up the speed to overhaul Gerrans.

“I don’t want to watch it, I’m annoyed at how I lost,” Sagan said. “But Gerrans is a good rider and quick finisher, and I’m still happy to have the green jersey on my shoulders already. The Tour is only starting.”

RadioShack-Leopard were prominent at the head of the peloton for much of the day and their efforts in controlling the early break’s lead helped Jan Bakelants retain yellow for another day. The Belgian endured a brief scare when Pierre Rolland (Europcar) attacked on the final climb, the Col de Marsolino, but with 13 rapid kilometres still to race, he was confident that the Frenchman and his companions would be reeled in.

“The team was always in control and we didn’t really panic even though the last climb was harder than it seemed on the road book. I knew Rolland would get a gap but I knew it was a long way to the finish too,” said Bakelants, who holds a lead of just one second over Julien Simon (Sojasun) and 70 other riders ahead of Tuesday’s team time trial in Nice.

The main overall contenders all broke even and finished together in the leading group of 90 riders which formed when the peloton fragmented on the deceptively tough final climb. Andy Schleck (RadioShack-Leopard) looked more comfortable than he has done for quite some time, while Alberto Contador and Cadel Evans were both well marshalled by their Saxo-Tinkoff and BMC teams.

After the previous day’s cameo in the final drop to Ajaccio, there were no fireworks from Chris Froome or Sky on the Marsolino, and indeed the British outfit had just three riders in the front group when the dust settled after the final climb – Froome, Richie Porte and Edvald Boasson Hagen. “It got a bit complicated. We tried to put Chris and Richie in a good position but with the narrow roads it wasn’t easy and RadioShack were determined to control the race,” said Sky directeur sportif Nicolas Portal. In spite of sustaining a fracture to his pelvis on stage 1, Sky's Geraint Thomas remains in the race, and the Welshman battled gamely to finish in a sizeable group 9 minutes down on Gerrans.

Clarke leads the way for Gerrans

As Gerrans explained afterwards, he entered stage 3 with high hopes, and Simon Clarke was on sentry duty on his behalf when Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM) sparked the échapée matinale immediately after the flag was dropped in Ajaccio. Westra and Clarke were joined by Sébastien Minard (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Alexis Vuillermoz (Sojasun) and Cyril Gautier (Europcar) and the quintet quickly established a lead of some three minutes over the main peloton on a day of pleasant sunshine in Corsica.

On such twisting roads, and with scarcely a metre of flat on the parcours, the peloton was loathe to let the escapees gain too much of an advantage, however. RadioShack-Leopard was careful to keep tabs on the margin for much of the afternoon and an injection of pace by Sky with 60km to go brought their lead down to around a minute.

In the meantime, Simon Clarke had hoovered up the mountains points on the Col de San Bastiano, Col de San Martino and Côte de Porto, and he looked to claim the polka dot jersey for himself when he attacked in the company of Minard with a shade over 20 kilometres to race.

Clarke would prove to be the final survivor of the early break, but his stout resistance ground to a halt one kilometre from the top of the Marsolino, when Pierre Rolland – bedecked from head to toe in polka dots – jumped from the dwindling peloton to claim the mountains points on offer at the summit.

Rolland continued his effort over the top – “I had a lead when I looked behind, so I said I’d have a go,” he shrugged afterwards – and he was joined on the rapid descent by Lars-Peter Nordhaug (Belkin), Mikel Nieve (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and a hugely impressive Sylvain Chavanel (Omega Pharma-QuickStep).

The Rolland-Chavanel alliance never succeeded in stretching its lead beyond ten seconds, however, and when the move petered out with 3 kilometres to go, the stage seemed set for Sagan, only for Gerrans to steal the show.


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Full Results
1Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge3:41:24
2Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro Cycling
3Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team
4Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
5Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team
6Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
7Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Astana Pro Team
8Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
9Julien Simon (Fra) Sojasun
10Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
11Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling
12Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
13Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team
14Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
15Elia Favilli (Ita) Lampre-Merida
16Manuele Mori (Ita) Lampre-Merida
17Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
18Davide Malacarne (Ita) Team Europcar
19Jan Bakelants (Bel) RadioShack Leopard
20Peter Velits (Svk) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
21Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Katusha
22Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-GreenEdge
23Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
24Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing Team
25Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol
26Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
27Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
28Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling
29David Millar (GBr) Garmin-Sharp
30Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-Merida
31Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-Sharp
32Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
33Guillaume Levarlet (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
34Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
35Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
36Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
37Julien El Fares (Fra) Sojasun
38Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Astana Pro Team
39Adam Hansen (Aus) Lotto Belisol
40Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team
41Brent Bookwalter (USA) BMC Racing Team
42Fredrik Carl Wilhelm Kessiakoff (Swe) Astana Pro Team
43Amaël Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing Team
44Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
45Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
46Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin-Sharp
47Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team
48Wouter Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
49Bram Tankink (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
50Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling
51Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
52Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
53Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team
54Andreas Klöden (Ger) RadioShack Leopard
55Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha
56Andy Schleck (Lux) RadioShack Leopard
57Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (Spa) RadioShack Leopard
58Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Sharp
59Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Movistar Team
60Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
61Maxime Monfort (Bel) RadioShack Leopard
62John Gadret (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
63Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
64Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col) Lampre-Merida
65Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
66Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
67Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
68Cameron Meyer (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
69Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin-Sharp
70Brice Feillu (Fra) Sojasun
71Przemyslaw Niemiec (Pol) Lampre-Merida
72Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
73Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar Team
74Bart De Clercq (Bel) Lotto Belisol
75Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha
76Arnold Jeannesson (Fra)
77Andrey Amador Bakkazakova (CRc) Movistar Team
78Thibaut Pinot (Fra)
79Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra)
80Maxime Mederel (Fra) Sojasun
81Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team Europcar
82Jerome Coppel (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
83Thomas Danielson (USA) Garmin-Sharp
84Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale Pro Cycling
85Michael Albasini (Swi) Orica-GreenEdge
86Alexandre Geniez (Fra)
87Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Sojasun
88Tony Martin (Ger) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
89Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Team Europcar
90Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:00:17
91Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) Sojasun0:02:29
92Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar
93Jérémy Roy (Fra) FDJ.fr0:03:40
94Rudy Molard (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
95Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana Pro Team
96Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
97Pavel Brutt (Rus) Katusha
98Ruben Plaza Molina (Spa) Movistar Team
99Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
100David Lopez Garcia (Spa) Sky Procycling
101Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Sojasun
102Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
103Lars Boom (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
104Jean-Marc Marino (Fra) Sojasun
105Boy van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:05:02
106Alan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
107Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
108Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Belisol
109Yury Trofimov (Rus) Katusha
110David Veilleux (Can) Team Europcar
111Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar
112Tony Gallopin (Fra) RadioShack Leopard
113Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:06:13
114Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
115Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Katusha
116Kanstantsin Siutsou (Blr) Sky Procycling
117Maarten Wynants (Bel) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
118Laurent Didier (Lux) RadioShack Leopard
119Alberto Losada Alguacil (Spa) Katusha
120Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
121Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Sky Procycling0:08:26
122Imanol Erviti Ollo (Spa) Movistar Team
123Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
124Daniele Bennati (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
125Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin-Sharp
126Benjamin Noval Gonzalez (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
127José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Movistar Team
128Aliaksandr Kuchynski (Blr) Katusha
129Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
130Jack Bauer (NZl) Garmin-Sharp
131Roy Curvers (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
132Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
133William Bonnet (Fra)
134Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
135Blel Kadri (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
136Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
137Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
138Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing Team
139Jerome Cousin (Fra) Team Europcar
140Yohann Gene (Fra) Team Europcar
141Juan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
142Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
143Egoitz Garcia Echeguibel (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
144Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
145Jesus Hernandez Blazquez (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
146Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
147Kévin Reza (Fra) Team Europcar
148Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-Sharp
149Romain Sicard (Fra) Euskaltel-Euskadi
150Svein Tuft (Can) Orica-GreenEdge
151Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
152Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
153Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra)
154Frederik Willems (Bel) Lotto Belisol
155Robert Gesink (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
156Ian Stannard (GBr) Sky Procycling
157Thomas Leezer (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
158John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
159Jens Voigt (Ger) RadioShack Leopard
160André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol0:09:15
161Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto Belisol
162Niki Terpstra (Ned) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
163Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
164Brian Vandborg (Den) Cannondale Pro Cycling
165Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
166Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
167Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa) RadioShack Leopard
168Edward King (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling
169Danny van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
170Marcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team
171Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Cannondale Pro Cycling
172Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
173Adriano Malori (Ita) Lampre-Merida
174Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida
175Matteo Bono (Ita) Lampre-Merida
176Ruben Perez Moreno (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
177Geraint Thomas (GBr) Sky Procycling
178Jonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Movistar Team
179Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Belisol
180Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
181Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Sky Procycling
182Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
183Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
184Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Lotto Belisol
185Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Sojasun
186Marcel Kittel (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
187Arthur Vichot (Fra)
188Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
189Assan Bazayev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
190Gatis Smukulis (Lat) Katusha
191Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
192Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
193Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
194Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Lampre-Merida
195Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr0:16:44
196Tom Veelers (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
DNFYoann Bagot (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFAndrey Kashechkin (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
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1Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge30pts
2Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro Cycling25
3Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team22
4Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step19
5Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team17
6Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team15
7Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Astana Pro Team13
8Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale11
9Julien Simon (Fra) Sojasun9
10Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi7
11Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling6
12Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale5
13Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team4
14Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team3
15Elia Favilli (Ita) Lampre-Merida2
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Intermediate sprint - Sagone, 28.5km
1Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale20pts
2Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team17
3Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar15
4Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) Sojasun13
5Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge11
6Marcel Kittel (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano10
7André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol9
8Mark Cavendish (GBr) Omega Pharma-Quick Step8
9Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Katusha7
10Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro Cycling6
11Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team5
12Tom Veelers (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano4
13Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling3
14Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Belisol2
15Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Cannondale Pro Cycling1
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Mountain 1 - Col de San Bastiano (Cat. 4) 12km
1Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge1
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Mountain 2 - Col de San Martino (Cat. 3) 58km
1Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge2pts
2Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) Sojasun1
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Mountain 3 - Côte de Porto (Cat. 3) 75km
1Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge2pts
2Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) Sojasun1
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Mountain 4 - Col de Marsolino (Cat. 2) 132km
1Pierre Rolland (Fra) Team Europcar5pts
2Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi3
3Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Belkin Pro Cycling Team2
4Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol1
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Most combative rider
1Simon Clarke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
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Young riders
1Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale Pro Cycling3:41:24
2Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
3Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
4Elia Favilli (Ita) Lampre-Merida
5Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
6Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Sharp
7Cameron Meyer (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
8Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar Team
9Thibaut Pinot (Fra)
10Alexandre Geniez (Fra)
11Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:00:17
12Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) Sojasun0:02:29
13Rudy Molard (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:40
14Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
15Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Sojasun
16Boy van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:05:02
17Tony Gallopin (Fra) RadioShack Leopard
18Rohan Dennis (Aus) Garmin-Sharp0:08:26
19Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quick Step
20Jerome Cousin (Fra) Team Europcar
21Juan Jose Lobato Del Valle (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
22Kévin Reza (Fra) Team Europcar
23Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Garmin-Sharp
24Romain Sicard (Fra) Euskaltel-Euskadi
25John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
26Danny van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:09:15
27Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
28Adriano Malori (Ita) Lampre-Merida
29Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida
30Peter Kennaugh (GBr) Sky Procycling
31Marcel Kittel (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano
32Arthur Vichot (Fra)
33Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
34Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
35Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ.fr0:16:44
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