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Mark Cavendish is Back

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July 10, 2015 – Mark Cavendish won his 26th Tour de France stage on Friday to take sole possession of third place on the overall list. The Manx Missile darted down the inside to deny German Andre Greipel a third sprint finish stage win this year as Peter Sagan finished third at the end of the 190.5km seventh stage from Livarot to Fougeres.

AFP/Yuzuru Sunada

It was a second straight win for the Etixx-Quick Step team following Zdenek Stybar’s success on Thursday, and went some way to making up for the loss of the yellow jersey due to Tony Martin’s broken collarbone.

Martin crashed on Thursday’s stage and had to quit the race despite being in the leader’s yellow jersey, before undergoing a successful operation in Hamburg on Friday.

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Cavendish had not won a Tour stage since 2013 having crashed out with a separated shoulder on the first stage of the 2014 edition. And he had been out of sorts so far on this Tour, finishing fourth on Sunday’s second stage and third on Wednesday’s fifth stage, both of which were won by Greipel.

But the Briton took a third stage win for Etixx at this Tour — Martin won Tuesday’s fourth stage — and moved one clear of Frenchman Andre Leducq on the overall list headed by two Tour legends and five-time overall champions: Eddy Merckx (34) and Bernard Hinault (28). German Greipel’s second place ensured he maintained his lead in the green points jersey ahead of Sagan.

But the Slovak moved up to second in the overall standings thanks to a time bonus on the line to sit just 5sec behind leader Chris Froome, who had refused to wear the yellow jersey on Friday as a mark of respect towards Martin.

American Tejay Van Garderen is third overall at 13sec.

Final 10 Kilometers of Stage 7

Results Stage 7:
1. Mark Cavendish (GBr) Etixx – Quick-Step 4:27:25
2. André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal
3. Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff-Saxo
4. John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin
5. Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha
6. Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ.fr
7. Tyler Farrar (USA) MTN – Qhubeka
8. Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) MTN – Qhubeka
9. Davide Cimolai (Ita) Lampre-Merida
10. Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Argon 18

General Classification:
1. Christopher Froome (GBr) Team Sky 26:40:51
2. Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff-Saxo 0:00:11
3. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:00:13
4. Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal 0:00:26
5. Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:00:28
6. Rigoberto Uran (Col) Etixx – Quick-Step 0:00:34
7. Alberto Contador (Spa) Tinkoff-Saxo 0:00:36
8. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx – Quick-Step 0:00:52
9. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:01:03
10. Warren Barguil (Fra) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:01:07