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Vuelta Stage 2:FDJ's Hutarovich pips Cav at the death to take sprint

First road stage comes down to sprint finish in Marbella

Mark Cavendish will have to wait a little longer to join the select group of riders to have won stages of all three of cycling’s Grand Tours as Yauheni Hutarovich of FDJ outsprinted the Manxman for the line to take a surprise win in Stage 2 of the 2010 Vuelta a España in Marbella this afternoon.

In finishing second, however, Cavendish retains the race leader’s red jersey he won in Seville yesterday evening by virtue of being the first HTC-Columbia rider over the line as they won the Team Time Trial in Seville that opened this year’s race.

The Manx Missile, who is the first British rider to lead the Vuelta since Robert Millar in 1986, said after yesterday’s performance that he was less concerned about wearing the overall leader’s red jersey than he was about winning stages, and seemed poised to do just that as he came past Garmin-Transitions’ Tyler Farrar before the Belarus rider pipped him to the line by half a bike length.

With the last three Grand Tours – last year’s Vuelta and this year’s Giro d’Italia and Tour de France – all starting in the flat terrain of The Netherlands, this year the Vuelta drew up a course that headed straight into the mountains for the first road stage.

While the two Category 3 climbs that featured on today’s 173km certainly aren’t as taxing as some of those that will feature later in the race, they did provide a spectacular backdrop to the stage, which saw the riders climb around 1,200 metres up from more or less sea level before heading back down again on a fast descent into the coastal resort of Marbella.

Shortly after the departure from Alcala de Guadaira, a four man escape group got away, comprising Mickael Buffaz of Cofidis, Johnnie Walker from Footon-Servetto, Omega Pharma-Lotto’s Mickael Delage and local rider Javier Ramirez Abeja of the Andalucía-CajaSur team.

However, some 73km into the stage, the number of escapees was reduced to three as Buffaz suffered a suspected broken collarbone after falling on the descent of the Alto de Pruna and the Cofidis rider will take no further part in the race.

The stage profile meant that many had predicted that this could be a day when a break would manage to stay away, but with HTC-Columbia pushing hard at the front of the peloton to try and protect Mark Cavendish’s overall lead, the final escapee, Johnnie Walker of Footon-Servetto, was swept up inside the closing 15km to set up the sprint finish.

Vuelta Stage 2 result

1 HUTAROVICH, Yauheni  FDJ                4h 35' 41"
2 CAVENDISH, Mark      HTC-Columbia            "
3 FARRAR, Tyler        Garmin-Slipstream       "
4 PETACCHI, Alessandro Lampre-Farnese Vini     "
5 CARDOSO,Manuel       Footon Servetto         "
6 FERNÁNDEZ, Koldo     Euskadi-Euskaltel       "
7 SWIFT, Ben           Team Sky                "
8 FÖRSTER, Robert      Milram                  "
9 GALIMZYANOV, Denis   Katusha                 "
10 STAUFF, Andreas     Quickstep               "
11 DUMOULIN, Samuel    Cofidis                 "
12 OFFREDO, Yoann      FDJ                     "
13 MATA, Enrique       Footon Servetto         "
14 HAEDO, Juan Jose    Team Saxo Bank          "
15 WEYLANDT, Wouter    Quickstep               "
16 BENNATI, Daniele    Liqiugas-Doimo          "
17 URTASUN, Pablo      Euskadi-Euskaltel       "
18 GALLOPIN, Tony      Cofidis                 "
19 SENTJENS, Roy       Milram                  "
20 STANNARD, Ian       Team Sky                "

Overall standings after Stage 2

1 CAVENDISH, Mark      HTC-Columbia       4h 49' 35"
2 SIVTSOV, Kanstantsin HTC-Columbia            + 12"
3 VELITS, Peter        HTC-Columbia           "
4 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay  HTC-Columbia           "
5 GOSS, Matthew        HTC-Columbia           "
6 ROULSTON, Hayden     HTC-Columbia           "
7 FARRAR, Tyler        Garmin-Slipstream       + 21"
8 BENNATI, Daniele     Liquigas-Doimo          + 22"
9 NIBALI, Vincenzo     Liquigas-Doimo         "
10 WILLEMS, Frederik   Liquigas-Doimo         "
11 GUARNIERI, Jacopo   Liquigas-Doimo         "
12 SANTAROMITA, Ivan   Liquigas-Doimo         "
13 PATERSKI, Maciej    Liquigas-Doimo         "
14 KREUZIGER, Roman    Liquigas-Doimo         "
15 HUTAROVICH, Yauheni FDJ                     + 25"
16 HUSHOVD, Thor       Cervelo TestTeam       "
17 TONDO, Xavier       Cervelo TestTeam       "
18 FLORENCIO, Xavier   Cervelo TestTeam       "
19 SASTRE, Carlos      Cervelo TestTeam       "
20 CUESTA, Iñigo Cervelo TestTeam "

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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