Greipel dominance in tour sprints continues

NATHAN BRUNDON
Last updated 17:20 25/01/2013
Andre Greipel
Reuters
PEDAL POWER: Andre Greipel.

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Andre Greipel continued his dominance of the sprint stages during the fourth stage of the Tour Down Under today.

The Lotto-Belisol rider claimed his second stage win of this year’s race, extending his record for the most stage victories at the World Tour season opener to 13.

Again it was his New Zealand team mate Greg Henderson, who finished third in Sunday’s prologue, who laid the ideal platform for the big German after the race came together inside the final 10km of the 126.5km stage from Modbury to Tanunda.

Today’s break featured world champion Philippe Gilbert and Damien Howson, the pair getting away early and staying away until inside the final 9km before a peloton, which was averaging over 47kmh, mowed them down.

Gilbert’s lead had edged over three minutes, making him the leader on the road for a time, but he had to settle for the day’s prize for the most competitive rider.

Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas continues to lead the general classification.

New Zealanders Jack Bauer (Garmin Sharp) and George Bennett (Radioshack Leopard Trek) are both sitting in the top 10 overall, while Bennett is fighting for a place on the podium in the young rider classification.Jesse Sergent (Radioshack) is the other New Zealand rider in the race.

The advantage swings back the way of the climbers tomorrow with the 151.5km queen stage from McLaren Vale to Old Willunga Hill.

The six-day tour finishes on Sunday.

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- The Southland Times

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