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A Fine Vino; Hushovd Loses Ground

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Post-Stage Chat

A late climb played havoc with an otherwise dull stage, and Astana's Alexandre Vinokourov countered an attack by Alessandro Ballan of BMC over the top with 8km to go, holding off the field on the descent for the stage win he wanted a day earlier. The sprinters stayed mostly together over the undulating course for a second-place sprint, won of course by Mark Cavendish of Team HTC-Columbia over Lampre's Alessandro Petacchi and Edvald Boasson Hagen of Sky. Thor Hushovd, riding in green, failed to take advantage of a stage that seemed made for his all-round ability and saw his lead in the competition disappear. Petacchi will enter the Pyrenees in green, with Hushovd scratching for intermediate sprints to get back into contention.

Results:

  1. Alexandre Vinokourov, Astana
  2. Mark Cavendish, HTC, at 0.13
  3. Alessandro Petacchi, Lampre, s.t.
  4. Edvald Boasson Hagen, Sky, s.t.
  5. JJ Rojas Gil, Caisse d'Epargne, s.t.
  6. Julian Dean, Garmin, s.t.
  7. Anthony Geslin, FDJ, s.t.
  8. Thor Hushovd, Cervelo, s.t.

No change to the overall. Update on the points:

  1. Petacchi, 187 points
  2. Hushovd, 185
  3. Cavendish, 162