Tour of Qatar Stage Three - Tornado Tom powers home
Another collarbone broken in pile-up
Belgium's Tom Boonen pulled out all the stops in a sprint finish to win stage three of the Tour of Qatar.
The defending champion lived up to his 'Tornado' nickname, edging out Heinrich Haussler of Germany and Australian Baden Cooke at the finish of the 136.5 kilometres stage from Dukhan in the west to Mesaieed, south of Doha.
The Quick Step rider has won the event three times in the last four years and his stage win was his 16th in the Tour since 2004.
However, Dutchman Wouter Mol retains the yellow jersey with an overall lead of nine seconds over Geert Steurs.
The finish was marred by a nasty pile-up just 200 metres from the line, causing Germany's Gerald Ciolek to break his collarbone. The 23-year-old will return to Germany for medical examinations to see if he requires surgery. His injury follows that of Norwegian champion and Team Sky member Kurt-Asle Arvesen, who broke his collarbone on Monday.
However, the rest of Team Sky crossed the line safely. Senior sports director Scott Sunderland told the Team Sky website: “It was a super-fast last few kilometres and then in the closing stages five or six riders came down.
“We'd had a team meeting beforehand and said we're here to do well but don't want to be taking any unnecessary risks at this stage of the season if it's not merited.
“It was a tough day yesterday but a little bit better today even though we had another four punctures on account of some rough road surfaces.
“The main thing now is for the riders to get to know each out on the road, and get used to communicating and working with each other on the bike in different race situations.”