Cavendish edges Greipel to win Tour stage three

Mon Jul 4, 2016 2:32pm EDT
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By Julien Pretot

ANGERS, France (Reuters) - Mark Cavendish joined France great Bernard Hinault in second place of the all-time list of Tour de France stage winners when he pipped Andre Greipel on Monday for his second victory in this year's race.

The Briton, riding for the Dimension Data team, beat German Greipel by less than a tyre's length to snatch his 28th career Tour win at the end of a 223.5-km ride from Granville.

Belgian Eddy Merckx, like Hinault a five-times Tour winner, still tops the list of stage wins with 34.

World champion Slovakian Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) retained the overall leader's yellow jersey after taking fourth place to stay in the hunt for a sixth green jersey for the points classification.

"It was a long day, I'm happy we did not suffer any crash today," said Sagan, whose team mate Alberto Contador, one of the favourites for the title who fell twice in the opening two stages, enjoyed a quiet day in the saddle.

"I'm in one piece, that's nice."

Sagan leads France's Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx-Quick Step) and Spaniard Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) by eight and 10 seconds respectively with defending champion Chris Froome (Team Sky) of Britain in fifth place, 14 seconds off the pace.

Armindo Fonseca (Fortuneo-Vital Concept) was the first attacker of the day and he built an 11-minute lead over a peloton that rode at snail's pace.   Continued...

Cycling - Tour de France cycling race - The 223,5-km (139 miles) Stage 3 from Granville to Angers, France - 04/07/2016 - Team Dimension Data rider Mark Cavendish of Britain reacts on podium after winning the stage.      REUTERS/Juan Medina