Skip to main content

Cavendish wins stage at Tour de France as Froome's overall lead cut

updated 2:48 PM EDT, Fri July 12, 2013
Mark Cavendish lost a sprint finish Thursday at the Tour de France but came out on top Friday in the 13th stage.
Mark Cavendish lost a sprint finish Thursday at the Tour de France but came out on top Friday in the 13th stage.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Mark Cavendish wins the 13th stage of the Tour de France for his 25th stage victory
  • Cavendish gains ground on Peter Sagan in the points race for the green jersey
  • Chris Froome retains the overall lead but rival Alberto Contador makes up ground

(CNN) -- Mark Cavendish finally had reason to smile at the Tour de France, winning the 13th stage to make up ground on Peter Sagan in the race for the green jersey.

But Cavendish's fellow Brit, Chris Froome, didn't have as good of a day since main rival Alberto Contador cut into his overall lead.

"It was a difficult stage, it was a nervous stage, but finally I'm so excited to win," said Cavendish. "It's been a difficult few days and it's nice to be on the podium again."

Cavendish, who won his second stage this year and 25th all time, became embroiled in controversy Tuesday when he collided with Tom Veelers as part of a sprint finish.

Although he was cleared by race officials, Veelers heavily criticized Cavendish and called for him to be thrown out of cycling's most prestigious race.

Cavendish was then sprayed with urine by a fan as the difficult days continued and edged by Marcel Kittel on Thursday in another sprint finish after seemingly looking in control.

On Friday, though, Cavendish cruised past Sagan at the finish line.

How has cycling recovered?
Can cycling beat the cheats?

He was part of a group of racers who broke away from the pack -- Contador included -- with about 18 miles of the relatively flat 107-mile stage remaining.

Cavendish said his Omega Pharma-Quick Step teammates carried him throughout the stage.

"They gave everything for me yesterday and I let them down," said Cavendish, now 84 points behind Cannondale's Sagan. "Today I just sat there while eight guys rode until their legs fell off.

"I didn't really do anything today. I just crossed the finish line first. In the end it was just Sagan and myself. I was really happy to beat him."

Team Sky was unable to keep pace with the breakaway pack as crosswinds became a factor, leaving Froome behind two-time race winner Contador.

Froome didn't benefit from the support of Edvald Boasson Hagen, who was ruled out of the Tour after breaking his shoulder Thursday.

"I desperately wanted to get on to the Contador move but I was sitting a little too far back," said Froome. "I was just behind Cav's wheel when he sprinted across.

"I think he was the last guy to get across and again it's another reminder that this race is 100 percent open and that there is still everything to race for."

His lead of three minutes, 25 seconds shrunk, although it wasn't Alejandro Valverde in second. The Movistar rider slipped to 16th overall when he collided with another racer and damaged a wheel.

Cavendish downplays Armstrong impact
Cycling's Next Generation

Dutchman Bauke Mollema moved into second, 2:28 behind Froome, and Saxo-Tinkoff's Contador shaved a minute off Froome's advantage to pull to within 2:45.

"I knew I had a really good buffer already -- almost four minutes on Contador," said Froome. "And okay, I worked really hard to get that time gap but you can't win them all.

"It was a really tough day. I don't think anyone was expecting it to be this hard.

"On paper it was a flat day and it should have been a bunch sprint but with those crosswinds it definitely made the race a lot more exciting."

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:49 AM EDT, Tue July 9, 2013
Engulfed by the darkness of doping's "white noise", he emerged the other side to become a beacon in cycling's anti-drugs fight.
updated 7:01 AM EDT, Fri July 5, 2013
Triathlon has a reputation for being expensive. In fact, the perceived costs are enough to stop some from taking up the challenge.
updated 12:24 PM EDT, Mon July 1, 2013
It cost his newspaper a thumping $1.6 million in legal costs.
updated 12:05 PM EDT, Sat June 29, 2013
If the Tour de France founder Henri Desgrange could have transported himself forward to the 100th edition, he might have abandoned the idea altogether.
updated 3:15 PM EDT, Sat June 22, 2013
Jan Ullrich, who won the 1997 Tour de France, admitted to doping for the first time in an interview with a German magazine.
updated 12:40 PM EDT, Fri August 24, 2012
Lance Armstrong during the 2005 Tour de France
Lance Armstrong is fighting to not only keep his seven Tour de France titles, but also his reputation as one of sport's most remarkable athletes.
updated 9:57 PM EDT, Wed October 10, 2012
armstrong us postal
Lance Armstrong was involved in "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen."
updated 3:34 PM EDT, Thu October 11, 2012
Lance Armstrong has not yet faced a backlash from the brands that have backed him. CNN's Jim Boulden explains.
updated 9:54 PM EDT, Mon August 20, 2012
A federal judge dismissed the latest lawsuit filed by champion cyclist Lance Armstrong aimed at halting the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's case against him.
updated 8:01 PM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
"Even if I could physically do it ... I wouldn't want to go onto another Games because this has been as good as it can get," says Olympic champion Chris Hoy.
updated 6:21 AM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
Adrien Niyonshuti is unlikely to win an Olympic medal, and he will do well to even finish his event, but his story is surely one of the most inspirational.
updated 5:32 PM EDT, Thu August 9, 2012
You're an Olympic champion and you've gone out at the top of your game -- so what next? Victoria Pendleton is considering work experience.
updated 5:45 AM EDT, Sat August 4, 2012
When Olympic officials cracked down on rogue merchandising, they couldn't have imagined the must-have accessory would be a pair of fake sideburns.
updated 2:04 PM EDT, Sun July 22, 2012
The 99th Tour de France took place over three weeks from June 30 to July 22. See the best pictures from the race here.
updated 6:11 AM EDT, Mon July 23, 2012
Bradley Wiggins makes history on the Champs Elysees as he becomes the first British rider to win cycling's Tour de France.
ADVERTISEMENT