Andre Greipel (Lotto Belisol) timed his sprint to perfection to win stage 5 ahead of Matt Goss (Orica-GreenEdge) and JJ Haedo (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff).
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Australian chases stage wins and green jersey
The Australian opted to hit the front early on the deceptively difficult drag to the line as the peloton belatedly closed in on the break of the day, but rather than drawing the sting out of his rivals’ legs, Goss’ move saw the venom ebb away from his own sprint, and Greipel swept past him in the final 100 metres to take his second stage win of the race.
“I knew I was running out of legs, I don’t last forever unfortunately,” Goss said wistfully afterwards. “We went full gas from the very bottom of the drag, but I knew that if my legs were running out then just about everyone else’s were running out too. That was kind of why I jumped a little earlier because I thought everyone was tired.”
That thinking was enough to propel Goss clear of Mark Cavendish (who finished 5th, still suffering the effects of his fall the previous day) and Juan José Haedo (3rd), but he was unable to shake off the tenacious Greipel. The German barely avoided the crash that took Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Sharp) with 3km to go, but he composed himself sufficiently to put himself in the box seat ahead of the final kick to the line.
“Greipel got a good run behind me and he came past,” Goss said. “He nearly came off with 3km to go and he did a fantastic job just to stay upright and then get back up to his
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