Für einen Moment sah Mark Cavendish schon wie der sichere Sieger aus, aber dann schob Marcel Kittel sein Rad unwiderstehlich als erster über die Ziellinie.
Hier findet man einen ausführlichen Bericht über den heutigen Tag, mit erneuten Massensturz kurz vor dem Ziel und einer fünfköpfigen Ausreißer Gruppe.
Hier der Bericht vom Team
Marcel Kittel makes it three wins for Team Argos-Shimano with stage 12 victory
Today’s stage 12 of the Tour ended with another very hectic sprint, but the team took control and Marcel Kittel stayed calm and sprinted to his third victory. Tuesday he had already become the most successful rider in this year’s Tour, with two individual victories, but today he further underlined his status as one of the peloton’s top sprinters.
The stage again featured an early escape by a group. As the finale approached, all the riders in the break except Juan Antonio Flecha (ESP) were caught. Flecha tried to go it alone, but in the final 5km he too was reeled in by the chasing bunch.
Team Argos-Shimano helped control the peloton. In the finale the train was running at full speed to deliver Kittel to the victory. With 5km to go Albert Timmer (NED) moved to the right, created some space and prepared the train to accelerate when the other riders took over. The train started early, but the team delivered Kittel to a good position so he could finish the job in the end.
“This win today means a lot to me,” said Kittel. “It’s the third win for the team, which is incredible. The team again did a really good job. They worked hard and kept me out of the wind all day. In the final kilometers it was our train against Omega Pharma – Quick-Step. When the last lead-out man pulled off I jumped to the right wheels and had a very good position when Mark Cavendish (GBR) started the sprint. I stayed calm and was able to overtake him in the end, but it was very close.
“Today it was great to beat Cavendish in a straightforward sprint. In the final 200m I was able to sit on his wheel. We started the sprint together, and I had the best punch at the end.
“We’ve done a good job so far, and I’m proud to know that I can beat the world’s best. Before the Tour we knew the team worked and we had prepared well, but when everything falls into place like this it is incredible. We’ve been working a long time for this, so these three wins are a big reward.”
“Victory number three is as beautiful as the first two,” said Team Manager Iwan Spekenbrink right after the race. “Marcel and the team are just outstanding at the moment. All our preparations and efforts have come together in this Tour de France, which makes it even more beautiful. We see that teamwork can make the difference, especially in sprinting. That’s why we’ve spent so much time and effort bringing the right individuals together and helping them develop them in their positions, training on tactics, and giving them full guidance.”
“Incredible! What a day,” said coach Rudi Kemna. “We knew we had a good opportunity again today with Marcel, so we took responsibility and helped control the race. Marcel is in top shape at the moment, so even in a long, straight finish he is really strong and fast. The team around him also contributed to this success, of course, and with this third win we can see that our way of working really pays off.
“You can see that our guys are getting more confident and believe in themselves. With success comes more pressure, but we can handle it and we are happy to get this pressure. Hopefully this well-oiled machine will keep on rolling and we can aim for more success.”