Tour Of Britain Stage 5

14/09/2012   |   Posted by jeremy

Tour of Britain stage 5 Stoke-on-Trent  -  Stoke-on-Trent  146.9km.

This was the fifth time that The Tour of Britain had visited the potteries. The stage would be a large 146km loop starting and finishing in Stoke-on-Trent.

Mark Cavendish was the man in the lead but would he be able to hold on to it. At the start of the stage the weather was dry as he led the peloton out of the beautiful surroundings of Trentham Gardens. In an early crash it was Liquigas who came off badly with two of their riders down and needing treatment.

Cav needed some minor shoe adjustments but was soon back in the peloton for the race to start in earnest. The first sprint of the day was at the 7km mark in at Stone, unusually there was no breakaway and the whole peloton reached the sprint point together. Sky led out to get Luke Rowe into the winning position but Leigh Howard of Orica-Greenedge,  piped him to the post for a win.

A group of eight riders got away as they approached the first of the day’s climbs, a category 2 at Glacial Boulder,Cannock Chase.  This group now included Ivan Basso. As they approached the top of the climb it was Jan Barta who got the maximum points, followed by Sammy Sanchez. The riders all came together again at this point until another group of three went off at the bottom of the descent to build up a lead of one minute seventeen seconds by the time they got to the second sprint point at Uttoxeter.

 It was Basso who crossed the line first for Liquigas. Just before the last sprint there was another crash caused by a touch of wheels in the peloton. This involved four or five riders, none of whom were badly hurt.  The three leaders were unaware of this as they crossed the line of the sprint with Bartosz Huzarski in first place for Net App.

84km into the stage the two lead riders approached the third climb at Oakamoor, another cat 2 with a one minute fifty second lead. Bernard Sulzberger crossed the line in front of basso, both riders were happy to maintain their steady riding positions as they weren’t in contention for the King of the mountains classification.

With 50km to go on the stage it was Ivan Basso cutting a lone figure as he had dropped Sulzberger. On the descent he stretched out his lead easily as he is famed for his descending talent.

Meanwhile at the back of the peloton, surprisingly it was Mark Cavendish who was struggling to keep up. As they all headed towards the Category 1 climb at Gun Hill the peloton was splitting into two. Bradley Wiggins was looking around for Cav and was talking to the team car to try and decide whether or not to wait for him or just crack on with the job in hand. Basso was being reeled in by the front group as the cross winds were picking up on the last climb of the day. After a lot of waiting around, Wiggins was finally joined by Cavendish.

Gun Hill although not a long one is steep and it was Jonathon Tiernan-Locke of Endura that made the break for the top and made it stick to get maximum points. From here it was a run down to the finish back in Stoke-on-Trent.

On a corner on the run in there was another crash. Two riders hit the deck, one of whom received a suspected broken collarbone. There was a lot of cat and mouse in the last few kilometres with Marc De Maar of United Healthcare going off the front. A great move considering he was one of the two riders that crashed on the corner. By the time he reached the finish line he had an eighteen second lead that couldn’t be reeled in and he crossed the line first for a comfortable win. A great day’s work for him and his team.

As for Cavendish, he finally crossed the line some eleven minutes and forty five seconds behind with Bradley Wiggins alongside him.

Another good stage although I’m not sure what happened to Cav. Sometimes it’s hard to see how you can go from leading a race to dropping off the radar in one stage, but I guess only he can answer that one.

 

 

Stage

1

Marc De Maar

UnitedHealthcare

2

Sep Vanmarcke

Garmin - Sharp

3

Boy Van Poppel

UnitedHealthcare

Overall

1

Leigh Howard

Orica - GreenEDGE

2

Boy Van Poppel

UnitedHealthcare

3

Sep Vanmarcke

Garmin - Sharp

Points

1

Boy Van Poppel

UnitedHealthcare

2

Leigh Howard

Orica - GreenEDGE

3

Mark Cavendish

Sky Procycling

Mountains

1

Kristian House

Rapha Condor

2

Pablo Urtasun

Euskaltel Euskadi

3

Peter Williams

Node 4 - Giordana

Sprints

1

Peter Williams

Node 4 - Giordana

2

Mathew Cronshaw

Node 4 - Giordana

3

Rony Martias

Saur Sojasun

Team

1

Saur Sojasun

 

2

UnitedHealthcare

 

3

Garmin - Sharp

 

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