2014 Tour de France

Tour de France 2014: Stage 1 Winner, Results and Updated Leaderboard Standings

Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, speaks with a cyclist, before officially starting the Tour de France at Harewood House near Leeds England. The 198 competitors in the 101st Tour de France will start their grueling three-week ride through four countries before ending the world's greatest cycling race in Paris on July 27. (AP Photo/Asadour Guzelian, Pool)
Asadour Guzelian/Associated Press
Gianni VerschuerenFeatured ColumnistJuly 5, 2014

Marcel Kittel took advantage of a big crash in the final straight of the 2014 Tour de France's opening stage, winning a sprint to take the yellow jersey.

Eurosport shared the result:

Mark Cavendish clashed with Simon Gerrans and fell hard on his shoulder, and while he won't lose any time by falling in the final straight, any damage to his collarbone could mean the end to his 2014 Tour.

And that news was confirmed on Sunday morning as the Isle of Man rider was ruled out of the Tour.

Cannondale Pro shared this great image, showing the profile of the opening stage:

2014 Tour de France Stage 1 Results
PlaceRiderTeamTime
1Marcel KittelGiant4:44:07
2Peter SaganCannondaleSame Time
3Ramunas NavardauskasGarminSame Time
4Bryan CoquardEuropcarSame Time
5Michael RodgersTinkoff-SaxoSame Time
6Chris FroomeTeam SkySame Time
7Alexander KristoffKatyushaSame Time
8Sep VanmarckeBelkinSame Time
9Jose Joaquin RojasMovistarSame Time
10Michael albasiniOricaSame Time
Sky Sports

The sun was shining early in the morning as the riders prepared themselves for the start of this year's Tour, and nerves were visibly high in Leeds. Cavendish didn't hide how he was feeling from anyone:

Via Team Lampre Merida, even the Royal Family took time out of their busy schedules to greet the peloton ahead of the start:

A total of 198 riders then got underway, and while some of them were still adjusting the straps on their pedals and enjoying the Yorkshire countryside, a threesome of riders escaped the pack within the first few miles.

Veteran Jens Voigt led the break, and he was joined by Nicolas Edet and Benoit Jarrier. The peloton felt comfortable giving the three riders an early lead, opening the door for one of the trio to make an early push for the polka-dot jersey.

Jarrier crossed the line at the top of the Cote de Cray first, but after that, it was all Voigt. Winning the intermediate sprint, the German left his companions behind and decided to go solo, as shared by his team's official Twitter account.

The English fans came out in force to watch the 2014 Tour grace the British roads, and the images of Voigt climbing the Cote de Buttertubs almost looked as if he was facing the dreaded Tourmalet, via the Tour's Twitter account:

The peloton started speeding up in the background, and while Voigt would claim top honours on the Buttertubs and the Cote de Grinton Moor, his solo bid would eventually end with more than 50 kilometers still to go:

Several riders were surprised by the sudden burst of speed from the peloton, however, including Alessandro Petacchi and Elia Viviani, key components of the sprint trains of Cavendish and Peter Sagan, respectively.

The sprint teams took full control of the peloton, upping the pace again with 20 kilometres to go. Lotto Belisol and Omega Pharma-Quick Step formed an alliance and got their sprinters into position, effectively eliminating the chances of a late break.

Astana also moved forward in protection of Vincenzo Nibali, opening the door for the sprint trains to conserve their energy heading into the final kilometers. Omega Pharma-Quick Step took the lead four kilometres from the finish line, Tony Martin blazing forward ahead of the final climb.

Fabian Cancellara made his jump on the climb but was caught by the peloton, and just as Omega Pharma-Quick Step seemed to have put Cavendish in excellent position, a big crash ended his sprint prematurely.

 

 

2014 Tour de France Leaderboard
PlaceRiderTeamTime
1Marcel KittelGiant4:44:07
2Peter SaganCannondaleSame Time
3Ramunas NavardauskasGarminSame Time
4Bryan CoquardEuropcarSame Time
5Michael RodgersTinkoff-SaxoSame Time
6Chris FroomeTeam SkySame Time
7Alexander KristoffKatyushaSame Time
8Sep VanmarckeBelkinSame Time
9Jose Joaquin RojasMovistarSame Time
10Michael albasiniOricaSame Time
Sky Sports
2014 Tour de France Point Classification
PlaceRiderTeamPoints
1Marcel KittelGiant45
2Peter SaganCannondale45
3Bryan CoquardEuropcar39
4Ramunas NavardauskasGarmin30
5Michael RogersTinkoff-Saxo22
6Jens VoigtTrek20
7Chris FroomeTeam Sky20
8Alexander KristoffKatyusha18
9Nicolas EdetCofidis17
10Sep VanmarckeBelkin16
Sky Sports
2014 Tour de France Mountain Classification
PlaceRiderTeamPoints
1Jens VoigtTrek4
2Benoit JarrierBretagne1
3Nicolas EdetCofidis1
4Lars BakLotto1
Sky Sports

Sunday's stage has the profile of a Flemish Classic, featuring several short but steep climbs and a finale with twists and turns. Peter Sagan will be the strong favourite heading into the second stage, though several of the Belgian riders like Stijn Devolder will have their eyes set on this particular stage.

The sprint teams will try and keep things close and aim for another mass sprint, but this early in the Tour, the attacking riders will fancy their chances on fresh legs.

Cavendish's fall in the final kilometer put a damper on the British crowd, and with the Omega Pharma-Quick Step rider racing so close to home, the disappointment in their camp will be enormous. Whether Cavendish will be able to start on Sunday is still unclear, and fans have to hope the sprinter will be able to continue this year's Tour.

 

 

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