Greipel Takes Third Stage Win of Tour de France
Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) has won his third stage of the 2012 Tour de France.
German André Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) has won his third stage of the 2012 Tour de France. Greipel pipped Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) in a photo finish to win Stage 13, a flat, 217-km run from Saint-Paul-Trois-Chateaux to Le Cap d'Agde, in 4:57:59. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) took third, and Bradley Wiggins (Sky) remains the maillot jaune.
The break of the day formed as soon as the riders cleared the neutral zone. Pablo Urtasun (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis), Matthieu Ladagnous (FDJ-BigMat), Michael Morkov (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) and Roy Curvers (Argos-Shimano) sallied off of the front, and Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun), Maxime Bouet (Ag2r-La Mondiale), and Jerome Pineau (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) joined them. At 50 km, the octet led the field by nine minutes.
Orica-GreenEdge began to chase, and the break's advantage dropped. With 64 km left, the escapees' lead was about two minutes. Pineau accelerated to drive the break, but Morkov countered and set out on his own.
Morkov forged a one-minute lead on his erstwhile companions, and with 34 km left, he led the fast-closing peloton by about a minute. He took on the day's only categorized climb, the Category 3 Mont Saint-Clair, with about the same lead, only to see the peloton reel him in.
With 24 km to go, Cadel Evans (BMC) and Jurgen van den Broeck (Lotto-Belisol) attacked, but Sky chased them down. Numerous attacks occurred on the descent, but Sky was letting no one escape.
Eventually, Alexander Vinokourov (Astana) and Michael Albasini (Orica-GreenEdge) got clear. The pair stayed away for a long time, but Lotto-Belisol chased and reeled in the pair with two km left. Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank) and Matthias Sprick (Argos-Shimano) had a dig, but maillot jaune Wiggins chased for teammate Boasson Hagen, who had worked hard for the Briton in the mountains. The stage came down to a sprint, which Greipel won.
In the overall, Wiggins leads teammate Christpher Froome by 2:05 and Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale) at 2:23. Stage 14 will not end in a bunch sprint, but it will not be a standing shaker, either. The 191-km ride from Limoux to Foix will feature two Category 1 ascents, but the second of these will be 38 km from the finish, so expect a no-hope climber to take this one. Who will it be? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!