Cavendish crashes in Qatar but claims sixth overall


Juan Antonio Flecha finished third overall as his Team Sky team-mate Mark Cavendish took a crashing fall on the sixth and final stage of the Tour of Qatar.

Cavendish was just winding up for his finishing kick inside the final 200 metres of the 120 kilometres stage to the Doha Corniche but he was short of room on the right due to the presence of Roger Kluge (Project 1t4i) and touched the wheel of Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Barracuda).

The world champion crashed to the ground but thankfully was soon back on his feet and despite cuts and bruises he was able to get back on his bike and roll over the line. He later rode back to the hotel with the rest of the team.

With Cavendish unable to contest for a third stage win of the week, it was left to Under-23 world road race champion Arnaud Démare (FDJ) to claim his first win as a pro, the French youngster showing a fine turn of speed to outsprint Denis Galimzyanov (Katusha) and Mark Renshaw (Rabobank).

As the field finishing together on the final stage it meant Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) sealed a fourth overall victory in Qatar, winning by 28 seconds from Farrar, with Flecha a further five seconds back in third.

Cavendish didn't lose time as his crash occurred inside the final 3km and he took sixth place on the general classification, ironically moving up a spot as team-mate Bernhard Eisel dropped down after stopping to make sure he was unscathed.

For the full report and results go to the Team Sky Website.