Tour of Qatar Stage 5: Three in a row for Mark Cavendish as he looks set to win overall

Bonus seconds see Bernie Eisel jump to fifth, but break from him and Taylor Phinney brought back before finale

by Simon_MacMichael   February 7, 2013  

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Mark Cavendish has taken his third successive stage win in the Tour of Qatar to virtually assure himself of the overall win with just tomorrow’s final stage to come, with a 15 second lead over BMC Racing’s Brent Bookwalter. In contrast to the scrappy finishes of the past two days, Cavendish today got a perfect lead out from his Omega Pharma-Quick Step team and saw off a challenge from Yauheni Hutarovich of AG2R with Aidis Kruopis of Orica-GreenEdge third.

Bernie Eisel, the long time wingman tCavendish but who chose to stay at Team Sky rather than following him to Omega Pharma-Quick Step at the end of last season, joined BMC Racing’s Taylor Phinney in going on the attack and try and loosen his close friend’s grip on the leader’s jersey.

Cavendish had already extended his lead slightly by taking the day’s second intermediate sprint ahead of Eisel, when the Austrian then went on the attack with Phinney and Omega Pharma Quick Step’s Nikki Terpstra, presumably sent along to keep a watchful eye on proceedings.

Phinney, third overall and eight seconds down on Cavendish this morning, presented the biggest threat, potentially getting into the leader’s jersey if he had been able to stay away and take the stage win, with ten bonus seconds on offer.

With Cavendish’s team leading the chase, any threat was annulled ahead of the closing 10 kilometres, although the bonus seconds Eisel took earlier mean he jumps from seventh to fifth overall.

As the stage reached its conclusion Omega Pharma Quick Step kept the tempo high, Tersptra acting as final leadout for Cavendish’s third win in as many days, and his fourth of 2013.

Assuming Cavendish negotiates tomorrow's final stage without mishap, it would be the sixth win in eight years for a Quick Step rider. Tom Boonen, who has missed this year's race as he recovers from surgery on an infected cut, won the overall in 2006, 2008, 2009 and 2012, while Wilfried Cretskens took the overall in 2007.

Tour of Qatar Stage 5 result  
  
1  CAVENDISH Mark         OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP     3h 11' 11"
2  HUTAROVICH Yauheni     AG2R LA MONDIALE         All at same time
3  KRUOPIS Aidis          ORICA GREENEDGE
4  BLYTHE Adam            BMC RACING TEAM
5  ROWE Luke              SKY PROCYCLING
6  DEGENKOLB John         TEAM ARGOS-SHIMANO
7  KRISTOFF Alexander     KATUSHA TEAM
8  BOUHANNI Nacer         FDJ
9  HAUSSLER Heinrich      IAM CYCLING
10 KLUGE Roger            TEAM NETAPP-ENDURA
11 APPOLLONIO Davide      AG2R LA MONDIALE
12 FORTIN Filippo         BARDIANI VALVOLE-CSF INOX
13 COLBRELLI Sonny        BARDIANI VALVOLE-CSF INOX
14 VIVIANI Elia           CANNONDALE
15 JARC Blaz              TEAM NETAPP-ENDURA
16 CANTWELL Jonathan      TEAM SAXO-TINKOFF
17 GALLOPIN Tony          RADIOSHACK LEOPARD
18 KEUKELEIRE Jens        ORICA GREENEDGE
19 TERPSTRA Niki          OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP
20 FLECHA Juan Antonio    VACANSOLEIL-DCM
  
Overall standings after Stage 5  
  
1  CAVENDISH Mark         OMEGA PHARMA-QUICK STEP   13h 30' 59"
2  BOOKWALTER Brent       BMC RACING TEAM             + 00' 15"
3  PHINNEY Taylor         BMC RACING TEAM             + 00' 20"
4  BLYTHE Adam            BMC RACING TEAM             + 00' 22"
5  EISEL Bernhard         SKY PROCYCLING              + 00' 24"
6  VAN AVERMAET Greg      BMC RACING TEAM             + 00' 25"
7  SCHÄR Michael          BMC RACING TEAM             + 00' 25"
8  BOASSON HAGEN Edvald   SKY PROCYCLING              + 00' 29"
9  ROWE Luke              SKY PROCYCLING              + 00' 30"
10 THOMAS Geraint         SKY PROCYCLING              + 00' 30"

2 user comments

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Go Cav! Big Grin

posted by kitkat [187 posts]
7th February 2013 - 14:45

like this
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Looks like the Missile is on course!! Cool

Fran the Man

posted by Fran The Man [61 posts]
7th February 2013 - 16:52

like this
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