2011 Tour de France – Stage 3 – American Independence

Tyler Farrar is celebrating July 4th American style as Team Garmin-Cervelo makes it two consequtive wins in the first three stages of the Tour de France. After a rough start to the season, with the exception of Roubaix, Garmin looked disjointed and on the brink of massive internal turmoil. Now, they’ve brought there A-game to the Tour and look to be hitting it long when it really matters. UPDATE: Apparently, Cavendish and Hushovd have been relegated from the intermediate sprint for inappropriate tactics costing them 10 and 9 pts respectively.

I’ve missed posting on the first two stages as we were coming back from Montreal. I was able to watch the Team Time Trial on satellite TV on the flight and was surprised to see BMC pull out such a great performance – finishing about three places ahead of where I had them pegged. I guess the big story is Contador, his reception and his lost time already. I think people are making a bigger deal of it than it really is as he can take that time back pretty sufficiently in the time trial and mountains. Of course, for Alberto, it goes without saying he'd rather not have been caught behind two crashes into the finish of the first stage.

Today, the big talking point will inevitably be Cavendish. How easily he gained the intermediate sprint points (UPDATE) he and Hushovd were relegated from the intermediate sprint and how much he struggled with keeping a good position on the slightest of uphill finishes. Cav hung on for points finishing 5th, but HTC really looked out of sorts on a stage that should have been his. With the sprint points being taken away, Cav now sits in 9th in the green jersey competition. Tomorrow maybe better for Cav? Well, there are so many big name sprinters this year, it's not going to be as easy as years past for the man from the Isle.

Stage 3 Top Five
1. Tyler Farrar (Garmin)________(45)__4h40’21”
2. Romain Feillu (VacanSoliel)___(35)
3. J.J. Rojas (Movistar)_________(30)
4. Sebastian Hinault (AG2R)____(26)
5. Mark Cavendish (HTC)_______(22)

Complete Stage results: Le Tour

General Classification Top Three after Stage 3
1. Thor Hushovd (Garmin)_______9h46’46”
2. David Millar (Garmin)_________s.t.
3. Cadel Evans (BMC)__________+1″

Complete Overall results: Le Tour

Green Jersey (points) Top Three after Stage 3
1. J.J. Rojas (Movistar)_______(65)
2. Tyler Farrar (Garmin)_______(58)
3. Philippe Gilbert (Lotto)______(52)

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