Le Grand Depart (Stage 2)
As the second stage of the Tour De France left York this morning bound for Sheffield, news came through that a devastated Mark Cavendish had been forced to withdraw from the rest of the tour, this was due to a dis-located collarbone sustained in a crash 250 meters from the finish line of stage one in Harrogate.
Stage two of the tour saw the riders race through Knaresborough, Addingham, Silsden, Keighley, Haworth, Hebden Bridge, Ripponden, Huddersfield, Holmfirth, High Bradfield before finishing in Sheffield.
The stage had a couple of challenging hills, the first of which was called Cragg Vale and is situated between Hebden Bridge and Ripponden. Cragg Vale is the start of a five and a half mile continuous gradient on the border of Great Manchester.
The second challenge came in the form of Holme Moss in the Peak District National Park, Holme Moss stands 524 meters high and is best known for it’s TV transmission tower at the top of the hill.
Stage two finished in Sheffield on yet another hill climb as Vincenzo Nibali of team Astana Pro completed the 201 kilometre stage in just 5 hours 8 minutes and 36 seconds.
Final Positions Stage 2 (York – Sheffield)
1 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team 5hrs 08mins 36secs
2 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team at 02secs
3 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step at same time
4 Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale
5 Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto-Belisol
6 Michael Albasini (Swi) Orica Greenedge
7 Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin – Sharp
8 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling
9 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
10 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale