Orica Greenedge worked very hard in the final kilometers for their Australian sprinter Leigh Howard but it was FDJ’s Nacer Bouhanni outsprinting Alessandro Petacchi of Lampre and Elia Viviani from Cannondale. Bouhanni was “less than” 10 seconds slower than Gaudin in the prologue and with the 10 second time bonus, he is now the proud owner of the yellow jersey.
Sylvain Chavanel failed to finish the bunch sprint with a podium spot, but still got 9 points for the sprinters qualification. With so much sprinters in good form, he may as well say goodbye to the green jersey tuesday evening. Bertjan Lindeman of Vacansoleil was in the escape group today and also the first to cross both the intermediate sprints and the single mountain gate. He wears the mountains jersey and is guaranteed to keep it tomorrow as well since there is not a single categorized climb.
Movistar’s GC contender Rui Costa failed to finish the stage after crashing and possibly breaking his wrist, alongside Jure Kocjan of Euskatel and Pierrick Fedrigo of FDJ due to illness. Also during the final kilometers, due to cross-wind, minor accidents and increasing pace, the pelation is split into two, resulted Marcel Kittel to miss the sprint and Tom Boonen to lose very valuable time.
1. Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ 4:47:24
2. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-Merida
3. Elia Viviani (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling