Cavendish in Perfect Spot Once Again; CYCLING:TOUR DE FRANCE

The Birmingham Post (England), July 19, 2008 | Go to article overview

Cavendish in Perfect Spot Once Again; CYCLING:TOUR DE FRANCE


Mark Cavendish continued to enhance his reputation as cycling's new sprint king with a fourth stage win in the 2008 Tour de France.

The Isle of Man rider emerged to the left of veteran sprinter Robbie McEwen to become only the second British rider to win consecutive Tour de France stages with victory in stage 13 from Narbonne to Nimes.

The quick run-in was again perfect for the sprinters and Erik Zabel, Thor Hushovd and McEwen had no answer to Cavendish's speed in the final 100 metres. Australia's Cadel Evans retained the yellow jersey, one second ahead of Frank Schleck of Luxembourg.

Cavendish's powers of recovery are renowned, but even he was expected to struggle after Thursday, where he won a bunch sprint into Narbonne. Once again, Cavendish's route seemed blocked but his timing to pop out from behind Hushovd was again impeccable.

The 23-year-old is the second sprinter in the last decade to win four stages in the same Toure, the other being Alessandro Petacchi in 2003. It remains unclear if he will stayr through the Alps to challenge for a fifth win in Paris, or be withdrawn to prepare for the Beijing Olympic Games.

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