Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad) took his second stage victory of this year’s Giro d’Italia in Ravenna this afternoon, narrowly beating Team Sky’s Davide Appollonio and arch-rival Alessandro Petacchi.

Cavendish, who is expected to pull out of the race this evening, was helped by a textbook performance by his team-mates, although a fast-finish by Appollonio nearly spoilt their good work.

A large crash 1.5km from the finish resulted in a small group of less than 20 riders contesting what is likely to be the final bunch sprint finish in this year’s Giro.

Race leader Alberto Contador was held up in the aftermath of the fall, which began when Sacha Modolo (Colnago-CSF Inox) overshot a tight bend while in second wheel.

This triggered a crash further down the peloton, with RadioShack’s Robbie Hunter one of the unlucky ones to come off.

Coming as it did within the final 3km, all riders in the group at that time will be awarded the same as Cavendish.

Perfect day for Cav

Barely a hill lined the 184km stage, which started in Castefidardo and headed north along the Adriatic coast to Ravenna, once the capital city of the Western Roman Empire.

After just 7km of racing, Michal Golas (Vacansoleil), Stef Clement (Rabobank), Davide Ricci Bitti (Farnese Vini) and Miguel Minguez Ayala (Euskaltel) broke clear, gaining some three minutes advantage in a short space of time.

At one point it seemed like the peloton were going to reel them in significantly earlier than anticipated, but, fearing counter-attacks, the four-man group were left to fight a losing battle for a little longer.

Yesterday’s stage winner John Gadret (Ag2r-La Mondiale) fell with some 45km remaining, as the stage fell into a rather tiresome lull for those watching.

The escapees were reeled in with just over 10km remaining, and a tricky run in to Ravenna saw Cavendish, Petacchi and the GC contenders all keen to stay upfront and out of trouble.

Cav could be seen screaming out the orders to his trusty lead-out train, most notably before the tight left-hand bend that Modolo overjudged.

The Brit’s loyal servant, Mark Renshaw, had to take evasive action to avoid falling off, and with those behind less fortunate, the peloton was reduced to a fraction of its size.

Cavendish was continuously studying Petacchi’s movements, even after launching his sprint.

Seemingly unbeknown to him, Sky’s young Italian sprinter Appollonio was finishing strongly to his right-hand side, and nearly pulled off the biggest win of his career.

Instead it was the Manxman who stood on the podium once again; his seventh individual victory in Italy’s biggest race.

Results

Giro d’Italia 2011, stage 12: Castelfidardo-Ravenna, 184km



1. Mark Cavendish (GB) HTC-Highroad in 4-17-25


2. Davide Appollonio (Ita) Team Sky


3. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-ISD


4. Roberto Ferrari (Ita) Androni Giocattoli


5. Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Quick Step


6. Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas


7. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Colnago CSF-Inox


8. Mirko Selvaggi (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM


9. Mark Renshaw (Aus) HTC-Highroad


10. Manuel Cardoso (Por) RadioShack all at st

General classification after stage 12

1. Alberto Contador (Spa) Saxo Bank-Sungard in 44-15-16

2. Kanstantin Sivtsov (Blr) HTC-Highroad at 59 secs

3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas at 1-21

4. Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Garmin-Cervelo at 1-28

5. Michele Scarponi (Ita) Lampre-ISD at 1-28

6. David Arroyo Duran (Spa) Movistar at 1-37

7. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Astana at 1-41

8. Jose Serpa (Col) Androni Giocattoli at 1-47

9. Dario Cataldo (Ita) Quickstep at 2-21

10. Matteo Carrara (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM at 2-21

Alberto Contador, Giro d



Race leader Alberto Contador

Mark Cavendish wins, Giro d



Mark Cavendish takes win number two at the 2011 Giro

Giro d’Italia 2011: Latest news

Giro fines Contador for missing press conference

Cavendish responds to ‘team car’ accusations at Giro

Giro d’Italia News Shorts (May 15)

Giro’s Sicilian cyclists proud to face Mount Etna

Contador surprises at Giro with attack ahead of mountains

Contador minds food at Giro as CAS decision nears

Weening supported by Rabobank and model Kroes

Local lad Appollonio bears fruit in Fiuggi

Giro d’Italia News Shorts (May 12 edition)

Blythe finding way in second Grand Tour

Leopard-Trek withdraws from Giro d’Italia

Leopard-Trek uncertain to continue in Giro

Tuesday’s Giro stage in memory of Weylandt

Giro doctor describes actions to save Weylandt

Wouter Weylandt killed in Giro crash

Giro news shorts (May 8)

Cavendish likely to take Giro lead tomorrow

Giro 2011: Who will win?

Kennaugh to lead Team Sky in Giro’s opening stage

Nibali’s Giro fight with Contador may reach the courtroom

Riis defends Contador’s participation in Giro

Cavendish set to start winning again at the Giro

Doping investigations force cyclists out of Giro d’Italia

Kennaugh replaces Pauwels in Sky’s Giro line-up

Contador scouts out the Giro mountains

Cavendish and Millar top list of Giro-bound Brits

Lampre likely for Giro despite doping investigation

Giro announces record 23 teams to race

2011 Giro to start in Turin with team time trial

Giro goes one up on the Tour with spectacular route

Nygaard, Sciandri and Lloyd comment on 2011 Giro route

Nibali’s Giro d’Italia?

Giro d’Italia 2011: Stage reports



Stage 11: Gadret grabs dramatic Giro stage win



Stage 10: Cavendish opens his Giro account



Stage nine: Contador storms Etna to take Giro lead



Stage eight: Gatto springs late attack to take win



Stage seven: Neo-pro De Clercq wins by a whisker



Stage six: Ventoso steals Giro stage six win


Stage five: Weening holds on to take stage and maglia rosa



Stage four: Tearful Farrar and Leopard-Trek lead riders across stage four finish line



Stage three: Vicioso victory overshadowed by Weylandt crash



Stage two: Petacchi wins as Cavendish takes lead



Stage one: HTC-Highroad wins Giro’s opening team time trial

Giro d’Italia 2011: Photo galleries

Stage 11 photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage 10 photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage nine photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage eight photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage seven photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage six photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage five photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage four photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage three photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage two photo gallery by Graham Watson

Stage one photo gallery by Graham Watson

Giro d’Italia 2011: Live text coverage



Giro d’Italia 2011 stage seven live text updates



Giro d’Italia 2011 stage five live text updates



Follow the 2011 Giro d’Italia live with Cycling Weekly

Giro d’Italia 2011: Start list



Giro d’Italia 2011: Start list

Giro d’Italia 2011: TV schedule



Giro d’Italia 2011: British Eurosport TV schedule

Related links



Giro d’Italia 2010: Cycling Weekly’s coverage index

 

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