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Renshaw wraps up Tour of Qatar with overall victory

  • By Steve Frothingham
  • Published Feb. 11, 2011
  • Updated Feb. 11, 2011 at 11:33 AM EDT
Mark Renshaw takes the overall title at the Tour of Qatar.

Mark Renshaw takes the overall title at the Tour of Qatar.

DOHA, Qatar (VN) — Mark Renshaw came out of the shadows of his better known teammates this week at the Tour of Qatar, scoring the biggest road win of his career and his first stage race overall win.

Renshaw (HTC-HighRoad) finished in the lead pack to ensure an 8-second overall victory ahead of Garmin-Cervelo’s Heinrich Haussler, who won two stages and the points jersey here.

Andrea Guardini, Farnese Vini’s 21-year-old phenom, continued his great early season by winning the hard-fought final stage sprint, ahead of Quick Step’s Francesco Chicchi and Rabobank’s Theo Bos. Guardini already won three stages at the Tour of Langkawi this year.

Haussler would have had to win the stage with Renshaw worse than third to regain the leader’s jersey that he had held for two days. His team did its best, chasing down a long-haul two-man break with 12km to go to ensure a field sprint. But Haussler conceded Thursday that his early season legs were spent after a long week fighting Qatar’s winds; the Australian could manage only ninth in Friday’s sprint.

“Coming into the sprint I just tried to follow Haussler everywhere,” Renshaw said. “I tried to stick to his back wheel. With about 20 meters to go he was about tenth wheel, so I knew then all I had to do was cross the line to get the victory.”

Renshaw, best known for leading out Mark Cavendish to dozens of victories, admitted he felt the pressure of riding for himself.

“Last night was the worse sleep I’ve had in quite some time … I’ve never got nervous leading out Cavendish for the biggest races in the world, but I come here and ride for myself and I couldn’t sleep all night.”

Long shot break

The race started at a posh seaside resort south of Doha. About 100 cyclists from a local club, enjoying the first day of the region’s traditional Friday-Saturday weekend, came to the start and gave the race its largest group of spectators of the week.

Almost immediately, the pack split in two in a crosswind, with most of the favorites in the front. The group came back together in a few kilometers and then the day’s break rolled off the front.

Gediminas Bagdonas (An Post-Sean Kelly) and Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) built a lead of more than five minutes in no time.

The break was almost perfect for Renshaw, who wanted to prevent Haussler from grabbing time bonuses at the two intermediate sprints along the way. The only thing that would have made the break perfect? If it had contained three riders, since the intermediate sprints gave 1-second bonuses to the third rider. So Renshaw made sure he won both of the pack sprints for the third spot, padding his lead to 8 seconds.

Meanwhile, Bagdonas and Van Avermaet worked steadily in the crosswinds, heading north into the capital city, whose distinctive skyline became visible on the horizon early in the race.

The race concluded with nine long laps on a finish circuit, back and forth along the city’s waterfront boulevard. The circuit passed in front of palatial government buildings and a lush park filled with families enjoying the sun.

The pair entered the circuits with a 4-minute lead, and the chase soon began to resemble a track pursuit, with the two men able to measure their shrinking gap each they saw the hungry pack head by on the other side of the boulevard’s grassy median.

Garmin put its full power on the front, with some help from Rabobank, and the gap steadily plummeted, until the pair entered the penultimate 6.5km lap with just under a 1-minute lead. The pair stayed in front — just barely — through the start-finish line to start the final lap.

That task taken care of, the final lap was a full-on battle between Rabobank and Leopard Trek. Leopard hoped to set up Daniele Bennati for a stage win, after a series of podium finishes this week. A stage win also could have vaulted him into second place overall.

Rabobank controlled the front until the final 2k, when Leopard’s Fabian Cancellara took a monster pull, with Bennati and Russell Downing sitting in. But when Spartacus pulled off, Rabobank again took over. Guardini, however, positioned himself well on his own and came out of the field with 100 meters. It was a tight race between him and Chicchi, who was on the opposite side of the wide road, but the younger rider was able to eek out the win at the line. Bos, after all the work of his team in the final kilometers, had to settle for third. And Canadian Dominque Rollin (FdJ) was an excellent fourth, for his best result of the week.

Stage 5

  • 1. Andrea Guardini, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, in 2h 44′ 06″
  • 2. Francesco Chicchi, Quick Step Cycling Team, at
  • 3. Théo Bos, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 0:00
  • 4. Dominique Rollin, FdJ, s.t.
  • 5. Roger Kluge, Skil-Shimano, s.t.
  • 6. Denis Galimzyanov, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 7. Tomas Vaitkus, Astana, s.t.
  • 8. Russel Downing, Sky, s.t.
  • 9. Heinrich Haussler,Garmin-Cervélo, s.t.
  • 10. Michael Van Staeyen, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, s.t.
  • 11. Danilo Hondo, Lampre-ISD, s.t.
  • 12. Daniele Bennati,Leopard-Trek, s.t.
  • 13. Gert Steegmans, Quick Step Cycling Team, s.t.
  • 14. Alexander Kristoff, Bmc Racing Team, s.t.
  • 15. Matteo Pelucchi, Geox-TMC, s.t.
  • 16. Niko Eeckhout, An Post-Sean Kelly, s.t.
  • 17. Mark Renshaw, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 18. Luca Paolini, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 19. Mirco Lorenzetto, Astana, s.t.
  • 20. Valentin Iglinskiy, Astana, s.t.
  • 21. Nikolay Trusov, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 22. Yoann Offredo, FdJ, s.t.
  • 23. Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni, Sky, s.t.
  • 24. Tom Veelers, Skil-Shimano, s.t.
  • 25. Maxim De Busschere, An Post-Sean Kelly, s.t.
  • 26. Dmytro Krivtsov, Lampre-ISD, s.t.
  • 27. Andrew Fenn, An Post-Sean Kelly, s.t.
  • 28. Pieter Serry, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, s.t.
  • 29. Maxim Gourov, Astana, s.t.
  • 30. Roger Hammond,Garmin-Cervélo, s.t.
  • 31. Bernhard Eisel, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 32. John Murphy, Bmc Racing Team, s.t.
  • 33. Mark Cavendish, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 34. Lars Bak, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 35. Graeme Brown, Rabobank Cycling Team, s.t.
  • 36. Kevin Claeys, An Post-Sean Kelly, s.t.
  • 37. Stijn Neirynck, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, s.t.
  • 38. Mikhail Ignatyev, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 39. Jelle Wallays, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, s.t.
  • 40. Michael SchÄr, Bmc Racing Team, s.t.
  • 41. Johan Van Summeren,Garmin-Cervélo, s.t.
  • 42. Xavier Florencio Cabre, Geox-TMC, s.t.
  • 43. Aliaksandr Kuchynski, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 44. Stijn Vandenbergh, Katusha Team, s.t.
  • 45. Jérémy Hunt, Sky, s.t.
  • 46. Marco Corti, Geox-TMC, s.t.
  • 47. Geert Steurs, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, s.t.
  • 48. Marcus Burghardt, Bmc Racing Team, s.t.
  • 49. Leonardo Giordani, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, s.t.
  • 50. Gabriel Rasch,Garmin-Cervélo, s.t.
  • 51. Gatis Smukulis, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 52. Patrick Gretsch, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 53. Danilo Wyss, Bmc Racing Team, s.t.
  • 54. Jan Ghyselinck, HTC-Highroad, s.t.
  • 55. Maarten Tjallingii, Rabobank Cycling Team, s.t.
  • 56. Oscar Gatto, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, s.t.
  • 57. Maarten Wynants, Rabobank Cycling Team, s.t.
  • 58. Andreas Klier,Garmin-Cervélo, s.t.
  • 59. David Gutierrez, Geox-TMC, s.t.
  • 60. Lars Boom, Rabobank Cycling Team, s.t.
  • 61. Frédéric Guesdon, FdJ, s.t.
  • 62. Wouter Weylandt,Leopard-Trek, at 0:09
  • 63. Vitaliy Kondrut, Lampre-ISD, at 0:09
  • 64. Andreas Stauff, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 0:09
  • 65. Patrik Sinkewitz, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 0:09
  • 66. Matt Brammeier, HTC-Highroad, at 0:09
  • 67. Kurt-asle Arvesen, Sky, at 0:09
  • 68. Manuele Mori, Lampre-ISD, at 0:09
  • 69. Adriano Malori, Lampre-ISD, at 0:09
  • 70. Alex Dowsett, Sky, at 0:09
  • 71. Dmitry Kozontchuk, Geox-TMC, at 0:09
  • 72. Diego Caccia, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 0:09
  • 73. Greg Van Avermaet, Bmc Racing Team, at 0:09
  • 74. Joost Posthuma,Leopard-Trek, at 0:09
  • 75. Lars-peter Nordhaug, Sky, at 0:09
  • 76. Tanel Kangert, Astana, at 0:13
  • 77. Marko Kump, Geox-TMC, at 0:13
  • 78. Nikolas Maes, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 0:15
  • 79. Gediminas Bagdonas, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 0:15
  • 80. Davide Vigano,Leopard-Trek, at 0:19
  • 81. Matteo Bono, Lampre-ISD, at 0:25
  • 82. Koen De Kort, Skil-Shimano, at 0:25
  • 83. Preben Van Hecke, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 0:28
  • 84. Mark Mcnally, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 0:28
  • 85. Kenny Robert Van Hummel, Skil-Shimano, at 0:34
  • 86. Simon Geschke, Skil-Shimano, at 0:35
  • 87. Fabian Cancellara,Leopard-Trek, at 0:39
  • 88. Filippo Pozzato, Katusha Team, at 0:41
  • 89. Davide Ricci Bitti, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 0:41
  • 90. Simon Clarke, Astana, at 0:41
  • 91. Stuart O’grady,Leopard-Trek, at 0:41
  • 92. Manuel Quinziato, Bmc Racing Team, at 0:41
  • 93. Daniele Ratto, Geox-TMC, at 0:41
  • 94. Karsten Kroon, Bmc Racing Team, at 0:41
  • 95. Tomas Alberio, Geox-TMC, at 0:41
  • 96. Anthony Geslin, FdJ, at 0:41
  • 97. Matthieu Ladagnous, FdJ, at 0:41
  • 98. Leif Hoste, Katusha Team, at 0:41
  • 99. Ian Stannard, Sky, at 0:41
  • 100. Sandy Casar, FdJ, at 0:41
  • 101. Rick Flens, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 0:41
  • 102. Mark Cassidy, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 0:41
  • 103. Kévin Van Impe, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 0:58
  • 104. Sam Bennett, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 1:08
  • 105. Travis Meyer,Garmin-Cervélo, at 1:16
  • 106. Dominic Klemme,Leopard-Trek, at 1:30
  • 107. Tom Boonen, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 1:30
  • 108. Tom Stamsnijder,Leopard-Trek, at 1:30
  • 109. Fréderique Robert, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 2:12
  • 110. Bram Tankink, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 2:12
  • 111. Daniel Lloyd,Garmin-Cervélo, at 2:31
  • 112. Andriy Grivko, Astana, at 2:48
  • 113. Dennis Van Winden, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 2:59
  • 114. Bradley Wiggins, Sky, at 4:29
  • 115. Ronan Van Zandbeek, Skil-Shimano, at 4:29

Final Overall Standings

  • 1. Mark Renshaw, HTC-Highroad, in 15:31:04
  • 2. Heinrich Haussler,Garmin-Cervélo, at 0:08
  • 3. Daniele Bennati,Leopard-Trek, at 0:17
  • 4. Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni, Sky, at 0:26
  • 5. Roger Hammond,Garmin-Cervélo, at 0:38
  • 6. Jérémy Hunt, Sky, at 0:39
  • 7. Gabriel Rasch,Garmin-Cervélo, at 0:42
  • 8. Bernhard Eisel, HTC-Highroad, at 1:05
  • 9. Marcus Burghardt, Bmc Racing Team, at 1:33
  • 10. Gert Steegmans, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 1:35
  • 11. Johan Van Summeren,Garmin-Cervélo, at 1:40
  • 12. Nikolas Maes, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 1:56
  • 13. Stuart O’grady,Leopard-Trek, at 4:39
  • 14. Tom Boonen, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 4:45
  • 15. Dominique Rollin, FdJ, at 5:20
  • 16. Maarten Wynants, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 5:33
  • 17. Roger Kluge, Skil-Shimano, at 5:36
  • 18. Danilo Hondo, Lampre-ISD, at 5:36
  • 19. Denis Galimzyanov, Katusha Team, at 6:00
  • 20. Mirco Lorenzetto, Astana, at 6:23
  • 21. Davide Vigano,Leopard-Trek, at 6:30
  • 22. Maarten Tjallingii, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 7:01
  • 23. Lars Boom, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 7:09
  • 24. Simon Clarke, Astana, at 8:10
  • 25. Ian Stannard, Sky, at 8:28
  • 26. Stijn Vandenbergh, Katusha Team, at 8:42
  • 27. Graeme Brown, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 9:09
  • 28. Yoann Offredo, FdJ, at 10:26
  • 29. Rick Flens, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 11:10
  • 30. Luca Paolini, Katusha Team, at 12:35
  • 31. Bradley Wiggins, Sky, at 13:14
  • 32. Wouter Weylandt,Leopard-Trek, at 13:42
  • 33. Filippo Pozzato, Katusha Team, at 14:09
  • 34. Tom Stamsnijder,Leopard-Trek, at 14:48
  • 35. Francesco Chicchi, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 16:53
  • 36. Stijn Neirynck, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 17:38
  • 37. Russel Downing, Sky, at 18:08
  • 38. Mark Cavendish, HTC-Highroad, at 20:21
  • 39. Tom Veelers, Skil-Shimano, at 20:42
  • 40. Théo Bos, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 20:46
  • 41. Alexander Kristoff, Bmc Racing Team, at 20:55
  • 42. Matthieu Ladagnous, FdJ, at 21:33
  • 43. Leif Hoste, Katusha Team, at 21:34
  • 44. Bram Tankink, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 22:19
  • 45. Fréderique Robert, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 23:11
  • 46. Gediminas Bagdonas, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 23:18
  • 47. Oscar Gatto, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 25:00
  • 48. Maxim Gourov, Astana, at 25:05
  • 49. Dennis Van Winden, Rabobank Cycling Team, at 25:33
  • 50. Tanel Kangert, Astana, at 27:27
  • 51. Ronan Van Zandbeek, Skil-Shimano, at 36:19
  • 52. Andrew Fenn, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 36:37
  • 53. Fabian Cancellara,Leopard-Trek, at 38:08
  • 54. Nikolay Trusov, Katusha Team, at 39:12
  • 55. Lars Bak, HTC-Highroad, at 39:17
  • 56. Koen De Kort, Skil-Shimano, at 39:42
  • 57. Andreas Stauff, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 39:59
  • 58. Andreas Klier,Garmin-Cervélo, at 42:20
  • 59. Tomas Vaitkus, Astana, at 45:48
  • 60. Greg Van Avermaet, Bmc Racing Team, at 46:00
  • 61. Kurt-asle Arvesen, Sky, at 46:09
  • 62. Alex Dowsett, Sky, at 46:17
  • 63. Aliaksandr Kuchynski, Katusha Team, at 46:42
  • 64. Michael SchÄr, Bmc Racing Team, at 46:43
  • 65. Marko Kump, Geox-TMC, at 46:58
  • 66. Patrick Gretsch, HTC-Highroad, at 47:17
  • 67. Karsten Kroon, Bmc Racing Team, at 47:26
  • 68. Travis Meyer,Garmin-Cervélo, at 47:57
  • 69. Matt Brammeier, HTC-Highroad, at 48:06
  • 70. Simon Geschke, Skil-Shimano, at 48:36
  • 71. John Murphy, Bmc Racing Team, at 50:38
  • 72. Gatis Smukulis, HTC-Highroad, at 50:41
  • 73. Xavier Florencio Cabre, Geox-TMC, at 50:44
  • 74. Danilo Wyss, Bmc Racing Team, at 50:47
  • 75. Patrik Sinkewitz, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 50:49
  • 76. Dmytro Krivtsov, Lampre-ISD, at 50:50
  • 77. Manuele Mori, Lampre-ISD, at 50:51
  • 78. Matteo Pelucchi, Geox-TMC, at 50:52
  • 79. Jelle Wallays, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 51:01
  • 80. Leonardo Giordani, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 51:15
  • 81. Pieter Serry, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 51:44
  • 82. Daniel Lloyd,Garmin-Cervélo, at 53:09
  • 83. Valentin Iglinskiy, Astana, at 53:13
  • 84. Manuel Quinziato, Bmc Racing Team, at 54:05
  • 85. Kévin Van Impe, Quick Step Cycling Team, at 54:09
  • 86. Preben Van Hecke, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 54:14
  • 87. Andrea Guardini, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 54:45
  • 88. Maxim De Busschere, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 54:48
  • 89. Michael Van Staeyen, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 54:50
  • 90. Frédéric Guesdon, FdJ, at 54:55
  • 91. Mark Mcnally, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 55:21
  • 92. Kenny Robert Van Hummel, Skil-Shimano, at 55:27
  • 93. Davide Ricci Bitti, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 55:30
  • 94. Diego Caccia, Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli, at 56:00
  • 95. Lars-peter Nordhaug, Sky, at 56:00
  • 96. Adriano Malori, Lampre-ISD, at 56:01
  • 97. Dominic Klemme,Leopard-Trek, at 57:31
  • 98. Mark Cassidy, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 57:36
  • 99. Andriy Grivko, Astana, at 57:39
  • 100. Daniele Ratto, Geox-TMC, at 58:14
  • 101. Mikhail Ignatyev, Katusha Team, at 58:37
  • 102. Niko Eeckhout, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 58:41
  • 103. Matteo Bono, Lampre-ISD, at 58:46
  • 104. Jan Ghyselinck, HTC-Highroad, at 59:53
  • 105. Kevin Claeys, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 59:55
  • 106. Geert Steurs, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, at 1:00:01
  • 107. David Gutierrez, Geox-TMC, at 1:00:12
  • 108. Dmitry Kozontchuk, Geox-TMC, at 1:00:17
  • 109. Vitaliy Kondrut, Lampre-ISD, at 1:00:29
  • 110. Anthony Geslin, FdJ, at 1:00:32
  • 111. Tomas Alberio, Geox-TMC, at 1:00:34
  • 112. Marco Corti, Geox-TMC, at 1:00:37
  • 113. Joost Posthuma,Leopard-Trek, at 1:00:38
  • 114. Sam Bennett, An Post-Sean Kelly, at 1:01:02
  • 115. Sandy Casar, FdJ, at 1:01:41

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