The Tour de France 2010 Stage 1 was won by Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-Farnese) with an amazing sprint at the finish line. He stealthily avoided the crashes which dominated the first stage of the Tour de France. With his win, Petacchi holds the green jersey.
Petacchi said, “I am here to sprint and win, so it is not a surprise that I won. I had good legs and my team delivered me well to the line. Crashing is part of sprinting and I avoided the crashes. Even if Cavendish had not crashed, who is to say I would not have won? I think I made a good sprint and would have won anyway.”
There were three major crashes late into the stage. The first crash was caused by someone’s dog that got loose right in the middle of the peloton. The second crash involved Mark Cavendish, Jeremy Hunt and Oscar Freire while the last crash happened a kilometer later and blocked the narrow road.
Thor Hushovd (Cervelo) was at the helm but with the Lampre teamwork, Petacchi emerged first and won with a sprint finish. Mark Renshaw (HTC-Columbia) came in second and Hushovd at the third.
Exhausted but happy, Petacchi shares, “To win a stage in the Tour is always good. The last time I won was in 2003. I crashed in 2004 and had to abandon, then I had a bad injury in the Giro. Winning the same now is the same thrill as winning before, though today was very difficult. It was very nervous and it was such a long time since I have raced a Tour. But once I got to the start, I remembered how everything is and I got over the nerves very fast.”