Tour de France 2010: Cavendish Sprints to 5th Stage Win

A day after being beaten by 36-year-old Alessandro Petacchi in the fourth stage on the Tour de France, 25-year-old Briton Mark Cavendish finally showed his true form by topping a wild finish towards the end of the 187.5-kilometer fifth stage from Epernay to Montargis on Thursday. Cavendish outsprinted Gerlad Ciolek of Team Milram and Sky Pro Cycling’s Edvald Boasson Hagen to win his first stage on the Tour this year.

The victory was redemption of some sort for Cavendish, who had been criticized for his below-par performance in the first four stages, including Wednesday’s loss to Petacchi despite leading with less than a kilometer to go. He won six stages last year and four in 2008.

Meanwhile, there were no movements in the general classification race for the second-straight day, as the contenders for the yellow jersey all finished safely with the main pack. Fabian Cancellara is still in first place, with defending champion Alberto Contador and seven-time winner Lance Armstrong in ninth and 18th places, respectively.