Mark Cavendish has certainly put his stamp on the 2014 Tour of Turkey, by winning stage 4 in a sprint finish today – marking the "Manx Missile’s" third stage win in this year’s race.
Once again, Cavendish profited from his team’s support, as he found himself in perfect position to easily hold-off a challenge to the line by Max Richeze.
Today’s stage was inundated with heavy rainfall that ultimately led to the race being neutralized, and later stopped, due to a number of crashes on the descent to Dalaman.
Once the race resumed, the day’s early breakaway group still held an advantage over the peloton with a lead of 2:30.
However, as the race tackled the final climb of the day, the remaining two escapees, Maxim Belkov and Luis Mas Bonet were finally caught. From there, David De La Fuente initiated an attack of his own. And, while a number of top sprinters such as Theo Bos and Andrea Guardini subsequently fell off the pace, Cavendish managed to stay onboard during the ascent.
Shortly thereafter, De La Fuente was reeled in by the chase.
The Omega Pharma- QuickStep team then took up the pace setting as the race descended into Marmaris, with Iljo Keisse putting in a big effort at the front during the final kilometers.
From there, Alessandro Petacchi and Mark Renshaw set about positioning Cavendish for the win.
Following today’s stage results, Rein Taaramae retained his overall lead by 6 seconds ahead of Adam Yates.
“The guys were absolutely perfect again today. They were perfect the entire day, not just in the leadout. It’s nice to have a team around me at this race where every guy is riding incredible.
They never left my side. Even on the last climb it was like riding in a bubble. I was surrounded by OPQS protecting me and guiding me. We got to the front just before the bottom of the climb and we kept the control until the sprint. They were phenomenal.
The leadout was just another example of the perfect job by the guys. Alessandro Petacchi and Mark Renshaw were super fast and they delivered me in the best position to launch the sprint. I would also like to congratulate the race commissaires and the organizers for the fact that they neutralized the race. It’s nice to see a race choose the safety of the riders as the top priority.
We didn’t race for about 10 kilometers and then we started again. When they neutralized the race it was difficult to ride and handle the bike, it was like riding on marbles. So, the right decision was made without a doubt. Tomorrow is another stage for the sprinters. Even if the beginning is a bit difficult we will see what can happen with our team riding so strong.”
– Mark Cavendish
Stage 4 Results GBR 1 CAVENDISH, Mark (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) 3:21:24 ARG 2 RICHEZE, Maximiliano Ariel (LAMPRE – MERIDA) AUS 3 RENSHAW, Mark (OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP) ITA 4 SBARAGLI, Kristian (MTN – QHUBEKA) ITA 5 VIVIANI, Elia (CANNONDALE) NED 6 BOL, Jetse (BELKIN) SLO 7 ILESIC, Aldo Ino (UNITEDHEALTHCARE) AUT 8 HALLER, Marco (KATUSHA) TUR 9 ORKEN, Ahmet (TORKU SEKERSPOR) BEL 10 VAN STAEYEN, Michael (TOPSPORT VLAANDEREN – BALOISE)
General Classification after Stage 4 EST 1 TAARAMAE, Rein (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) 16:00:54 GBR 2 YATES, Adam (ORICA GreenEDGE) + 6 FRA 3 HARDY, Romain (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS) + 38 ESP 4 SANCHEZ GIL, Luis Leon (CAJA RURAL – SEGUROS RGA) ERI 5 KUDUS GHEBREMEDHIN, Merhawi (MTN – QHUBEKA) AUS 6 HANSEN, Adam (LOTTO BELISOL) + 43 ESP 7 COBO ACEBO, Juan Jose (TORKU SEKERSPOR) + 44 ITA 8 FORMOLO, Davide (CANNONDALE) BRA 9 ANDRIATO, Rafael (NERI SOTTOLI) KAZ 10 DYACHENKO, Alexsandr (ASTANA)
About the TUR
The Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey (TUR) started in 1963 with the name of "Marmara Tour", gained international status in 1965 for the first time and was taken under the auspices of Presidential authority in 1966. On its 50th anniversary the competition will be held on April 27-May 4, 2014 in 8 stages starting from Alanya, proceeding along the Mediterranean and Aegean coasts. Istanbul will be home to the spectacular finish.
The world’s sole "transcontinental cycling tour" will witness the high-level competition of world-renowned athletes and teams. The slogan this year is "50 Years of Cycling Passion". The Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey which has been reaching a wide access network throughout the world via live and recorded broadcasts by means of prestigious national and international channels in more than 150 countries since 2008, stands out as a global organization that serves as a model of Turkey’s sports organization experience. With its deep-rooted history, its contributions to the development of the sport of cycling and the promotion of tourism in Turkey through TV broadcasts, the organization continues to be a success story for our country.
Leader jerseys find their owners according to the scores gained at the premium gates through each stages. The athlete at the first rank in leader jerseys classification at the end of every stage begins the next stage with the leader jersey and aims to keep the jersey till the end of the TUR.
Turkish blue Turquoise which is derived from the pronunciation of the word Turk in French and which is the colour of the Mediterranean and Aegean coasts is also the colour of the Leader jersey as the institutional colour of the TUR.
White Jersey with the premium gates through which historical and natural richness of Turkey is carried to the screens as Beauties of Turkey are being highlighted are carried to the podium on the leader of the premium gates at the end of every stage.
Red Jersey with the best climber premium gates with which the King of the Mountains is determined by the climbing performance of the riders.
Green Jersey with the sprint gates which witness the struggle among the strongest sprinters.
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