Mark Cavendish takes his first victory of the season at Dubai Tour
Feb 08 2018 02:19 pm CET

Mark Cavendish takes his first victory of the season at Dubai Tour

Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) has won the third stage of the Dubai Tour. The rider was the fastest at the bunch sprint, crossing the finish line ahead of Nacer Bouhanni and Marcel Kittel.

Throughout the 190-kilometre stage between Skydive Dubai and Fujairah, the wind was the big star. The day started with an escape of five riders, including Loic Vliegen (BMC), Mark Christian (Aqua Blue Sport) and Quentin Valognes (Team Novo Nordisk), but behind them, the show was happening.

Crosswinds managed to create a gap in the pack and sprinters like Elia Viviani (Quick-Step Floors) and Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) were in the first group. Race leader Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo) had mechanical problems and was dropped, but soon managed to find his way back to the first group as well.

At around 70 kilometres to go, the front part of the peloton reeled the escapees back in and soon the whole group was compact again. For the next kilometres, the wind was very strong and the pack decided to ease the pace to avoid any problems.

With 25 kilometres to the finish, BMC's Tom Bohli managed to escape and created a gap of around 15 seconds with the pack but before the 10-kilometre mark he was captured back by the pack. Soon the sprint trains of each team organised and Dimension Data did a great job by putting Mark Cavendish in an optimal position for the last meters.

The British rider stayed on the wheel of Bahrain-Merida's Sonny Colbrelli and at the last moment launched his own sprint to take his first victory of the season. Cofidis' Nacer Bouhanni crossed the finish line second and Marcel Kittel (Katusha-Alpecin) was third.

The winner of the previous stage Elia Viviani took the leader's jersey from LottoNL-Jumbo's Dylan Groenewegen, who was handed a 20-second time penalty for drafting behind a team car.
Photo of Mark Cavendish by Jens Herrndorff for Team Dimension Data.



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