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Tour de France 2011 Stage 11: Cav turns table on Greipel, takes green jersey

Voeckler to take yellow into high mountains tomorrow

It took a mere 24 hours for Mark Cavendish to get revenge on Andre Greipel, staying ahead of the big German at the finish line in Lavaux to win his third stage of this year’s Tour de France and strip the green jersey from Philippe Gilbert. Thomas Voeckler finished in the bunch sprint and will wear the maillot jaune into the Pyrenees tomorrow.

Today’s breakaway featured three riders who had already been on day-long escapes in this edition of Tour. Ruben Perez (Euskatel), Mickael Delage (FDJ) and Tristan Valentin (Cofidis) teamed up with Lars Boom (Rabobank), Andriy Grivko (Astana) and Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun) to try their luck on a rainy, windy course. The half-dozen adventurers stayed away over two small categorized climbs and the intermediate sprint in Gaillac. When the peloton came through Gaillac, Cavendish easily soaked up seventh place points while Gilbert found himself swamped by a few riders, including his own lead-out man.

For a while it looked the lousy weather might ensure the break’s ultimate success, but it was caught with only a couple of kilometres to the finish, despite Lars Boom’s last ditch effort. In Lavaur, Cav received a classic lead-out from Australian Mark Renshaw. Greipel grabbed the Manx Missile’s wheel, but couldn’t come around. Tyler Farrar finished third and Gilbert finished out of the top thirty, thus handing the green over to Cavendish. It was the Brit’s eighteenth Tour de France victory.

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