6th of February 2013 Author: Glo Wood
Mark Cavendish claimed his second win for his new team, Omega Pharma-QuickStep, with victory on stage three at the Tour of Qatar. The 27-year-old British sprinter beat Dutchman Barry Markus and Lithuania's Addis Kruopis in a sprint finish on the 143km stage between Al Wakra and Mesaieed. Cavendish also picked up 13 bonus seconds and is now fourth overall, eight seconds behind leader Brent Bookwalter. Britain's Adam Blythe is third overall, behind American Taylor Phinney, both from BMC Racing team, who occupy all the top three spots.
Cavendish's win is his second for his new team, following a victory on the opening stage of the Tour of San Luis in Argentina in January. The Briton was faster than both Markus and Kruopis in a tricky finish, despite having to leave his team-mates behind after leading the peloton into the final few kilometres. Cavendish launched his sprint with 350m to go and won in a time of three hours, five minutes and 14 seconds.
But he didn't want to make any strong statements when asked if he could win the race overall, despite being just eights seconds behind Bookwalter with three stages remaining of the largely flat race which favours sprinters. "Anything can happen in this race. You have to take every day as it comes. I know I can make it every time in the front echelon, but things can happen," said Cavendish. "I'm not saying it's out of the question, but we will see what happens."
The fourth stage is a 160km race from Camel Race Track to Al Khor Corniche, here are the odds for the top three favourites for the stage win at Bet365:
Mark Cavendish - 7/10
Andrea Guardini - 12/1
John Degenkolb - 12/1
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