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By Staff and wire reports
Tyler Farrar (U.S. National) won the second stage of the Tour de l’Avenir in France on Friday, vaulting into fourth place overall.
The 21-year-old Farrar outkicked Borut Bozic (Perutnina) and Hans Dekkers (Rabobank) in a mass-sprint finale to the 107.5-mile stage from Argentré-du-Plessis to Sainte-Scolasse-sur-Sarthe.
Denmark’s Lars Bak (Team CSC) retained the yellow jersey ahead of Ukraine’s Denys Kostuyk (Jartazi Granville) and Spain’s Jesus Del Nero (Orbea).
The day’s action kicked off early with a five-man break that went clear just 6km into the race. At 115km, with the gap up to more than five minutes, the chase began and the escapees were retrieved with just 7km remaining.
As the bunch set up for the dash to the line, Farrar stayed glued to Dekkers’ wheel until the final hundred meters, when he shot around to claim the victory.
It was the 21-year-old Farrar’s second career stage win at the Tour de l’Avenir – his first came during stage seven in 2004 – and his third win on European soil this season. It also gave him the green points jersey.
Teammate John Murphy crossed in 10th place on the day.
Farrar, who splits his time between the U.S. national team and the Health Net-Maxxis squad, has signed a deal with the French-based Cofidis squad for 2006.
Saturday’s third stage is a 195km leg from Sainte-Scolasse-sur-Sarthe to Sassay.
Stage 2 results
1. Tyler Farrar (USA), U.S. National, 173.5km in 4:03:56
2. Borut Bozic (Slo), Perutnina, same time
3. Hans Dekkers (Ned), Rabobank, s.t.
4. Assan Bazayev (Kaz), Capec, s.t.
5. Leonardo Duque (Col), Jartazi Granville, s.t.
6. Lloyd Mondory (F), AG2R, s.t.
7. Jose Joaquin Rojas (Sp), Liberty Seguros, s.t.
8. Ilya Chernyshov (Kaz), Capec, s.t.
9. Jurgen Van Loocke (B), Landbouwkrediet-Colnago, s.t.
10. John Murphy (USA), U.S. National, s.t.
1. Lars Bak (Dk), Team CSC
2. Denys Kostyuk (Ukr), Jartazi Granville, at 0:04
3. Jesus Del Nero (Sp), Orbea, at 0:06
4. Tyler Farrar (USA), U.S. National, at 0:14
5. Rony Martias (F), Bouygues Telecom, at 0:15
6. Borut Bozic (SLO), Perutnina, at 0:18
7. Matti Breschel (Dk), Team CSC, s.t.
8. Sebastien Duret (F), Bretagne-Jean Floc’h, at 0:19
9. Hans Dekkers (Nl), Rabobank, at 0:20
10. Aaron Kemps (Aus), Liberty Seguros, at 0:21