Mark Cavendish wins the third stage of the Tour of Qatar 2012
Mark Cavendish opened his winning account of the season after claiming the stage 3 of the Tour of Qatar 2012. It is his first success with the new team and also the first since he won the UCI World Championships in Copenhagen.
Mark crossed the finish-line moments ahead of the stage 2 general classifications leader, Tom Boonen. He did well to restrict the Belgian at the second position.
Aidis Kruopis, Mark Renshaw and John Degenkolb achieved the third, fourth and fifth positions during the 146.5 kilometre chase to Al Gharafa Stadium.
Cavendish was struggling with his health just before the start of the race but witnessing his brilliant sprinting performance during the third stage, he seemed nothing less than super fit.
He told the media, "I'm very happy. I'm still not 100 percent but I wanted to ride and we wanted to ride as a team. We didn't expect it to split up but I was looked after by the lads and we didn't need to ride on the front”.
Team Sky’s cyclist briefed that his teammates, Flecha and Eisel, supported him during the final kilometres and played an important role in his win.
The trio had just enough gas in their tanks towards the end to claim the third stage of the race.
Mark was delighted after winning the jersey and briefed that the silver jersey is a positive start to his season and he is now targeting the coming stages of the race.
He cited, “It's incredible to win with this jersey. I said that I wanted to do the jersey proud and you never really feel the season has started until you get a win. Now I feel I can go on a roll".
Mehdi Sohrabi of Lotto Belisol Team won both the sprints of the race and earned 6 important UCI points.
Cavendish secured the highest number of 15 points during the third stage, with Boonen 12 and Aidis Kruopis bagging 9 points after the race.
Tom Boonen is still leading the overall classifications with a lead of 6 seconds over Tyler Farrar.
Mark Cavendish, Johan Vansummeren and Thomas Dekker occupied the next three spots after the stage 3 classifications.
Rudiger Selig, Adam Blythe and Guillaume Van Keirsbulck were the top three young riders on the day.
Tom Boonen is also leading the points classifications with 27 points already in his back pocket. Mark Cavendish and Tyler Farrar are at second and third positions, with 15 points each.
With three more stages to go, Boonen is looking good to take the overall classifications. His main rivals at the moment are: Farrar, Cavendish and Johan Vansummeren, as the cyclists are not far behind to steal the top podium position.