Navardauskas delivers a Lithuanian first
excerpts from LeTour.fr
Ramunas Navardauskas became the first Lithuanian to win a stage at the Tour de France as he claimed a solo victory in Bergerac in a crashed marred finale that took Peter Sagan down and prevented the sprinters from coming across to the last attacker who had jumped in the côte de Monbazillac. It was a well deserved victory for Garmin-Sharp after a very courageous attempt by Tom-Jelte Slagter. Despite the difficult weather conditions, Vincenzo Nibali retained the yellow jersey with no worries ahead of the closing time trial.
Five riders in the lead
Cyril Gautier (Europcar) was the first attacker of the day. He was rejoined by Martin Elmiger (IAM) and Arnaud Gérard (Bretagne) at km 4, by Tom-Jelte Slagter (Garmin) at km 8 and by Rein Taaramäe (Cofidis) at km 16. Cannondale took the command of the peloton to stabilize the deficit of the peloton around 3.30 after the first hour of racing. Stormy weather affected the riders after 45 kilometres into stage 19. Three other sprinters’ teams, Giant-Shimano, Lotto-Belisol and Katusha, united their efforts and the time gap went down to two minutes even before there were 100 kilometres remaining.
The time gap remained around two minutes for 60 more kilometres while the pouring rain didn’t discouraged Jean-Marc Marino, Ji Cheng and Lars Bak to pull the bunch, respectively for Cannondale, Giant-Shimano and Lotto-Belisol, until they gave way to their team-mates for the last hour of racing. Slagter attacked from the front group with 32km to go. The two time stage winner of Paris-Nice was very courageous to fight alone against the peloton. He passed first atop the côte de Monbazillac but was rejoined by his team-mate Ramunas Navardauskas who continued solo with 13km to go.
Navardauskas stays ahead and avoids crashing
Navardauskas was ahead with 20 seconds at 10km to go. He made the best of his time trialling skills to remain in the lead and therefore avoid the hiccups. Within 3km to go, a crash took Peter Sagan down and slowed the chasing peloton. The Lithuanian kept an advantage of seven seconds over John Degenkolb who outsprinted Alexander Kristoff. The tall rouleur from Klaipeda had won a stage at the Giro d’Italia last year. He also claimed the overall classification at the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire in April this year. Now he delivered Garmin-Sharp’s first win at the 2014 Tour de France. Just like Tinkoff-Saxo with Rafal Majka and Michael Rogers, the American outfit made it up for the bad luck that forced their leader Andrew Talansky out of the race too early.
Stage 19 Results
LTU 1 NAVARDAUSKAS, Ramunas (GARMIN SHARP) 4:43:41 GER 2 DEGENKOLB, John (GIANT-SHIMANO) + 7 NOR 3 KRISTOFF, Alexander (KATUSHA) AUS 4 RENSHAW, Mark (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) ITA 5 BENNATI, Daniele (TINKOFF-SAXO) ITA 6 PETACCHI, Alessandro (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) FRA 7 DUMOULIN, Samuel (AG2R LA MONDIALE) FRA 8 SIMON, Julien (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) BEL 9 VANMARCKE, Sep (BELKIN) BEL 10 ROELANDTS, Jurgen (LOTTO BELISOL) FRA 11 FEILLU, Romain (BRETAGNE – SECHE ENVIRONNEMENT) ITA 12 TRENTIN, Matteo (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) BEL 13 BAKELANTS, Jan (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) DEN 14 MORKOV, Michael (TINKOFF-SAXO) ITA 15 MARCATO, Marco (CANNONDALE) ITA 16 VISCONTI, Giovanni (MOVISTAR) ESP 17 HERRADA LOPEZ, Jesus (MOVISTAR) FRA 18 PINOT, Thibaut (FDJ.fr) FRA 19 JEANNESSON, Arnold (FDJ.fr) ESP 20 VALVERDE BELMONTE, Alejandro (MOVISTAR) NED 21 TERPSTRA, Niki (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) FRA 22 PINEAU, Cédric (FDJ.fr) FRA 23 LEMOINE, Cyril (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) ITA 24 NIBALI, Vincenzo (ASTANA) EST 25 KANGERT, Tanel (ASTANA) FRA 26 MOLARD, Rudy (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) ITA 27 OSS, Daniel (BMC RACING) GBR 28 THOMAS, Geraint (SKY) NED 29 KRUIJSWIJK, Steven (BELKIN) USA 30 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING) SVK 31 VELITS, Peter (BMC RACING) FRA 32 ROLLAND, Pierre (EUROPCAR) RUS 33 TROFIMOV, Yury (KATUSHA) ESP 34 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY) BEL 35 VAN DEN BROECK, Jurgen (LOTTO BELISOL) ITA 36 PAOLINI, Luca (KATUSHA) DEN 37 FUGLSANG, Jakob (ASTANA) USA 38 HORNER, Christopher (LAMPRE – MERIDA) CAN 39 MEIER, Christian (ORICA GreenEDGE) SUI 40 RAST, Grégory (TREK FACTORY RACING)
General Classification after Stage 19 ITA 1 NIBALI, Vincenzo (ASTANA) 85:29:33 FRA 2 PINOT, Thibaut (FDJ.fr) + 7:10 FRA 3 PERAUD, Jean-Christophe (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 7:23 ESP 4 VALVERDE BELMONTE, Alejandro (MOVISTAR) + 7:25 FRA 5 BARDET, Romain (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 9:27 USA 6 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING) + 11:34 NED 7 MOLLEMA, Bauke (BELKIN) + 13:56 NED 8 TEN DAM, Laurens (BELKIN) + 14:15 CZE 9 KONIG, Leopold (NETAPP – ENDURA) + 14:37 ESP 10 ZUBELDIA AGIRRE, Haimar (TREK FACTORY RACING) + 16:25
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