2012 Amgen Tour of California - Stage 1
Peter Sagan wins crash marred sprint in Santa Rosa. Slovakian outsprints Haussler and Rodriguez to open the 2012 Amgen Tour of California.
Peter Sagan (Liquigas) has won the first stage in the Amgen Tour of California in Santa Rosa. The 22 year old had to recover from a puncture with 7 km to go and avoided a crash within the last 3 km to outsprint Heinrich Haussler and Fred Rodriguez who finished in second and third.
In the first kilometer of the stage eight riders broke clear; Maxime Bouet (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Jeff Louder (UnitedHealthcare), David Boily (Spidertech-C10), Andrew Dahlheim (Bissell), Ben Jacques-Maynes (Bissell), Sebastian Salas (Optum pro Cycling-Kelly Benefit Strategies), Josh Atkins (Bontrager-Livestrong) and Sam Johnson (Team Exergy). The eight worked well together and created a maximum lead of more than eleven minutes.
During the stage David Boily grabbed enough points on the KOM's to take the mountain's jersey but dropped off the break in the final just as Dahlheim. After the climb to Coleman Valley Road Radioshack-Nissan-Trek with last years winner Chris Horner took control of the race and the gap came quickly down to 5:20. In the front Bouet, Louder and Jacques-Maynes were the strongest and set out on their own.
In the bunch Rabobank started to chase as well in order to bring all back together for their sprinter Michael Matthews. They finally succeeded when a big group of 70 riders came back together with less than 20 kilometers to go. With three kilometers to go Matthews of Rabobank crashed together with a few Bissell riders. The sprint trains of Liquigas and Garmin-Barracuda avoided the crash and ledd-out Sagan and Haussler to take first and second.
1 57 *SAGAN Peter LIQ SVK 4h42'35"
2 13 HAUSSLER Heinrich GRM AUS ' '
3 151 RODRIGUEZ Fred XRG USA ' '
4 63 HOWARD Leigh OGE AUS ' '
5 38 VAN AVERMAET Greg BMC BEL ' '
6 35 HINCAPIE George BMC USA ' '
7 112 ANDERSON Ryan SPI CAN ' '
8 27 VANDENBERGH Stijn OPQ BEL ' '
9 144 *CRADDOCK Lawson BLS USA ' '
10 45 SANCHEZ GIL Luis Leon RAB ESP ' '
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