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Tour de France 2011 Stage 2: Garmin-Cervelo wins team time trial

Thor Hushovd in yellow, Ryder gains back some time

Garmin-Cervelo flew the argyle flag today in the 23 km today’s team time trial in Les Essarts, winning by four seconds over the surprising BMC contingent. Thor Hushovd assumed the yellow jersey, tied on time with teammate David Millar and one second ahead of Cadel Evans. Alberto Contador’s woes continued with nearly all his GC rivals putting time into him as his Saxo Bank squad finished eighth, 28 seconds behind Garmin.

In fact, it was Contador’s last ranked Saxo Bank that rolled down the ramp first today, and they grabbed the race lead until Garmin’s superb ride. Although they finished with only six men, Garmin was a well-oiled, kilometer-eating machine. Ryder Hesjedal was among the six who finished together.

Garmin and HTC were today’s favourites, but HTC got off to a rocky start when it lost a rider to a crash in the first turn. Still, Mark Cavendish and company finished only five seconds behind Garmin in fifth. Bradley Wiggins’ Sky and the Schleck brothers’ Leopard finished 3rd and 4th respectively, and the strong Radioshack team finished just outside in sixth.

Tomorrow’s route from Olonne sur Mer to Redon looks like one for the sprinters.

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