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Roche steady as Cavendish ‘dive bombs’ to second win

Posted 10 September 2010

Nicolas Roche was not alone in experiencing an acute sense of déjá vu as Mark Cavendish sped to his second stage win in as many days when the Vuelta á Espana reached Burgos.

Cavendish’s win was a virtual carbon copy of his victory in Lleida save for the high speed bunny-hop he pulled to cross the finish line ahead of Thor Hushovd (Cervelo Test Team) and Daniele Bennati (Liquigas-Doimo).

While he didn’t pull completely clear of the bunch Cavendish rounded the final right hand bend on the wheel of teammate Matthew Goss and never looked back after the Australian swung off having delivered him to within 175 metres of the finishing line.

The duo did a phenomenal job to weave their way through the peloton to seize the win despite the determination of the Garmin Transitions, Quick Step and Katusha teams to shut them out.

Garmin Transitions expended huge energy in pulling back a five man break comprising Allan Davis (Astana), Giampaolo Cheula (Footon-Servetto), Manuele Mori (Lampre Franese Vini), Olivier Kaisen (Omega Pharma Lotto) and Niki Terpstra (Milram) in the run in to the finish.

Their work rate was impressive and it made life seriously difficult for Roche and the other riders occupying top ten spots in the GC as the peloton tipped speeds of 70 kilometeres per hour.

Quick Step picked up where they left off inside the final two kilometres only to see the Katusha team take control of the sprint with a burst of speed as the race hit the final kilometre.

The finish was elementary for the HTC Columbia team once Goss piloted Cavendish through the final right hand corner onto the finishing straight, as the Manxman confirmed after the race.

“We did our homework once again. We knew the last corner and knew it was wide. A lot of guys braked because they knew it was sharp but we knew it was wide and you could go around faster and we just dive bombed down the inside,” he said.

The result meant that there was no change to the GC where Igor Anto (Euskaltel-Euskadi) continues the lead the race. Roche remains 9th overall having placed 34th on the stage and heads into the first of three mountain stages tomorrow with a deficit of 2’30” to the Spaniard.

Results:

Stage 13: Rincón de Soto – Burgos, 196 kilometres

1. Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team HTC-Columbia 4 hours, 50 minutes, 18 seconds
2. Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervélo Test Team
3. Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
4. Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) FDJ
5. Manuel Cardoso (Por) Footon-Servetto
6. Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-Transitions
7. Denis Galimzyanov (Rus) Team Katusha
8. Koldo Fernandez De Larrea (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
9. Theo Bos (Ned) Cervélo Test Team
10. Johnnie Walker (Aus) Footon-Servetto – all s.t.

34. Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale – same time

General classification after stage 13:

1. Igor Anton (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi 56 hours, 28 minutes, 03 seconds
2. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo 0:00:45
3. Xavier Tondo (Spa) Cervélo Test Team 0:01:04
4. Joaquin Rodriguez (Spa) Team Katusha 0:01:17
5. Ezequiel Mosquera (Spa) Xacobeo Galicia 0:01:29
6. Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Caisse d’Epargne 0:01:57
7. Ruben Plaza (Spa) Caisse d’Epargne 0:02:07
8. Rigoberto Uran (Col) Caisse d’Epargne 0:02:13
9. Nicolas Roche (Irl) Ag2R-La Mondiale 0:02:30
10. Frank Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank

9. Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale at 2 minutes, 30 seconds

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