By Agence France Presse
Britain’s Mark Cavendish called his sixth stage win in this year’s Tour de France “beautiful” after powering to a stunning victory on the Champs-Élysées on Sunday.
A superb lead-out from Columbia-HTC teammate Mark Renshaw gave Cavendish a clear run to the line as he surged away from green jersey Thor Hushovd (Cervélo TestTeam) and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Slipstream).
“The Champs-Élysées is a dream for every sprinter in the world; to cross the finish line in view of the Arc de Triomphe with your arms in the air,” Cavendish said.
“It was a beautiful feeling, it was a proud feeling and to win made it even more beautiful. It’s one of the most spectacular feelings and it didn’t disappoint me.”
Cavendish said he went into the Tour with the goal of winning stages and finishing in Paris.
“Yeah, I got a bit excited when I was in the green jersey briefly, but Thor rode well and he deserves to win it,” he said. “I can’t complain, I have six stage victories.”
Cavendish praised the support from his Columbia team, especially Renshaw, who made the perfect break in the final straight to cut off an attack from Garmin.
“I am probably the luckiest sprinter on the planet, because I can look at Mark’s back wheel with 50kms to go and know I will be delivered at the front 200m from the line,” said Cavendish, who now has 10 stage wins from the past two Tours.
“Our team puts us there, but Mark’s positioning is phenomenal. He rides a bike like he rides a tandem — he knows he has to go through a gap I can also get through.
“To come away with first and second on the Champs-Élysées makes it all the sweeter.”