Giro d'Italia: Stage six as it happened

Mark Cavendish secures his second win of the 2013 Giro while Sir Bradley Wiggins finishes in the peloton despite being held up by a crash.

9 May 2013 Last updated at 16:57

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As it happened

  1. 1645: 

    Super stuff from Mark Cavendish, then, putting the disappointment of yesterday behind him to take his second stage win of this year's Giro.

    Here's a developing report of stage six, which will have quotes an analysis added as they come in. My colleague Chris Bevan takes over from me tomorrow, as the Giro embarks on a hilly 176km leg from San Salvo to Pescara for stage seven.

    Thanks for your company and contributions - you've been super. I'll be back in the saddle next week. Until then, it's good afternoon from me. Ciao.

  2.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Jack from Glasgow: "Wiggins achievements are wonderful for British cycling but in Cavendish we have someone truly preeminent in his field - very possibly the best sprinter ever."

  3. 1638: 
    Mark Cavendish

    Mark Cavendish has now won 12 stages of the Giro in his career and brings his total victories in Grand Tours to 38.

  4. 1636:  
    Pink Jersey, Giro d'Italia leaderOVERALL STANDINGS

    1. Luca Paolini (Italy/Katusha) 19:56:39"

    2. Rigoberto Uran (Colombia/Team Sky) +17"

    3. Benat Intxausti (Spain/Movistar)+26"

    4. Vincenzo Nibali (Italy/Astana)+31"

    5. Ryder Hesjedal (Canada/Garmin)+34"

    Selected others:

    6. Bradley Wiggins (Britain/Team Sky) +34"

    10. Cadel Evans (Australia/BMC Racing)+42"

  5. 1634: 
    STAGE SIX TOP 10

    1. Mark Cavendish (Britain/Omega Pharma Quick Step) 3:56:03"

    2. Elia Viviani (Italy/Cannondale) same time

    3. Matthew Goss (Australia/Orica) same time

    4. Nacer Bouhanni (France/FDJ) same time

    5. Mattia Gavazzi (Italy/Androni Giocattoli) same time

    6. Manuel Belletti (Italy/AG2R) same time

    7. Davide Appollonio (Italy/AG2R) same time

    8. Giacomo Nizzolo (Italy/RadioShack) same time

    9. Matti Breschel (Denmark/Saxo Tinkoff) same time

    10. Roberto Ferrari (Italy/Lampre) same time

  6. 1631:  
    Pink Jersey, Giro d'Italia leader

    Italian Luca Paolini of the Katusha team retains the race leader's pink jersey, with Sir Bradley Wiggins still sixth, 34 seconds adrift, after finishing safely in the bunch.

  7.  
    INTERVIEW

    Stage six winner Mark Cavendish: "It was incredible. I'm so happy, no problems. Everyone rode till their legs couldn't go any more. I'm so happy, we're buzzing, absolutely buzzing.

    "What does it feel like? Imagine you get a kit car, you build it and when you start it, you get that feeling - it's like that. It's like all the bits of an engine and I'm just the exhaust at the end, the bit that makes the most noise. That's how it feels - everything just fits together."

  8. 1628: 

    Mark Cavendish, who took his 12th Giro stage victory, dedicates his stage six win to Wouter Weylandt who died in a crash on stage three of the Giro two years ago.

  9. 1625: 

    It's a brilliant performance from Mark Cavendish who is led out perfectly by his Omega Phama Quick Step team-mate Gert Steegmans. The Manxman times his move well, sliding out of the slipstream and hammering down on the pedals before having the strength to hold off the chasing pack.

  10. 1624: 
    CHAMPAGNE MOMENT

    Mark Cavendish wins stage six of the Giro d'Italia.

  11. 1622: 

    Little bit of barging going on up front as we head into the last kilometre. Mark Cavendish is about 15th at the moment...

  12. 1620: 

    Remarkable scenes. Bradley Wiggins is up at the front of the peloton and really motoring at the moment. I'm sure he'll drop back soon, though, but it is the best place to be to stay out of trouble.

  13.   
    Rob Hayles, Former GB cyclist and 5 live sports extra commentator

    "Bradley certainly seems a lot more focused on the job in hand, riding up at the front and away from trouble. Team Sky are working very well together at the moment."

  14. 1617: 

    Manuele Boaro of Team Saxo-Tinkoff has gone on the attack, gaining about 10m on the peloton before getting sucked back in. Mark Cavendish is back in 25th or so with 4.5km to go.

  15.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Justin in Kent: "First week of grand tour is always full of incidents. All sky need to do is get wiggins onto the first big mountain without any injuries and in touching distance of serious rivals. And they will."

  16. 1612: 

    Argos-Shimano have moved up to the front of the peloton. Could John Degenkolb get a second successive stage win? Mark Cavendish's Omega Pharma Quick Step team have dropped back a bit, but they're still in the mix.

  17.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Chaz Sizeland: "Dunno about Team Sky's tactics, haven't they just unluckily been caught up in pretty much all the crashes."

  18. 1608: 

    The peloton is beginning to stretch out a bit now as the pace increases with 12km to go. Mark Cavendish's Omega Pharma Quick Step are still at the front as they pass a giant mound of salt.

  19. 1604: 
    CAVENDISH WATCH

    Ding, ding. That's the bell to signal the last lap of this current circuit. Next time we cross the finish line, we'll have a stage winner. Mark Cavendish is nicely placed in fifth with 16km to go. His Omega Pharma Quick Step team are at the front of the peloton.

  20.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Marlon: "Team Sky seem intent on throwing away any chance of Wiggins winning the Giro. Tactics seem all over the place compared to TdF."

  21. 1559: 

    It's a two pronged attack at the moment, with Team Sky and Sir Bradley Wiggins heading up one side and Omega Pharma Quick Step and Mark Cavendish on the other side. Things shaping up nicely for a bunch sprint.

  22. 1555: 

    The lead group have eased off which has allowed Sir Bradley Wiggins' group to continue to close the gap. With 22km to go, they should comfortably catch them before the finish.

  23. 1553: 

    The gap is down to 48 seconds with 25km to go. That's good news for Sir Bradley Wiggins and Team Sky, but how much will this have taken out of them? This was supposed to be an easier day for them.

  24.   
    Rob Hayles, Former GB cyclist and 5 live sports extra commentator

    "It's grey sky at the moment for Team Sky. Desperate times."

  25. 1551: 

    Wiggins is at the front of the second group, along with his Team Sky team-mates, doing some of the work himself to try and haul the lead group back in. Mark Cavendish is in the lead group, too. They're around 58 seconds behind.

  26. 1549: 

    Sir Bradley Wiggins is back on his bike and moving again. Will the front group ease off to allow the second group - which contains Wiggins - to catch back up again?

  27. 1547:  
    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra's live commentary with Simon Brotherton and Rob Hayles is up and running. You'll can also listen to the closing stages on this very website.

  28. 1545: 
    OUCH!

    Nightmare for Bradley Wiggins! There's been a crash which has completely blocked the road. Wiggins stuck towards the back and is now off his bike just standing there. There are still 32km to go, but Team Sky will have their work cut out to catch back up.

  29.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Ben in Chertsey: "Re Tom Edwards. Well Renshaw is the lead out man for Team Blanco by all accounts so if he's going to remain a lead out man it may as well be for the best sprinter in the world, right?"

  30. 1540: 

    They say all good things come to an end - and that's exactly the case for the two Aussies who have raced much of this stage all alone at the front. Wurf and Bobridge have been swallowed up by the peloton and we're perfectly set for a bunch sprint finish. Super scenes.

  31. 1538: 
    OUCH!

    There's another crash, with five riders hitting the deck as the road narrows and the peloton bunches up. Everyone picks themselves up, though, with no general classification riders involved - and we're as your were.

  32. 1536: 

    Britain's David Millar drops back from the peloton to pick up drinks bottles for his team-mates from the team car before heading back up the road to dish them out.

  33. 1533: 
    Food and drink

    For those of you who were wondering, the city is named after Margherita of Savoy, the first Queen of Italy. The humble cheese and tomato pizza took its name from the Queen with the red tomato, white mozzarella and green basil representing the colours of the Italian flag.

  34. 1528: 

    The riders are approaching Margherita di Savoia where they will do two laps of the 16.6km Circuito Delle Saline before sprinting to the finish. The breakaway's lead is down to 70 seconds with just over 40km to go.

  35. 1522: 
    Giro d'Italia

    Here's a shot of the peloton making their way along the Adriatic coast earlier in the stage which runs from Mola di Bari to Margherita di Savoia.

  36. 1520: 
    OUCH!

    Brian Bulgac of the Lotto Belisol team hits the deck while riding towards the back of the peloton. The Frenchman picks himself up and awaits his team car so they can change a bent wheel. Svein Tuft, 36, finds himself on the floor, too - I suspect he had higher hopes for his birthday. Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish are comfortably up front, and weren't affected by the minor crash.

  37. 1515: 

    Striking images of the salt flats of Margherita di Savoia which stretch for 20km and produce six million tonnes of the white stuff every year. Meanwhile, it looks like Wurf and Bobridge's time at the front is coming to an end. The gap is down to 90 seconds with 49km to go.

  38.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Tom Edwards: "Re Mark Renshaw: His contract ends this year & talk is OPQS are trying to sign him. Only need Eisel & team is back."

  39. 1509: 
    OUCH!

    Woops. One of the officials, who was running just ahead of the field on a motorbike, gets on the power a little to early as he exits a corner and ends up in a heap on the ground. Ouch. Looked like a nasty landing, that. Luckily for the peloton, they're able to take avoiding action, filing down the inside as the official picks himself up.

  40. 1505: 

    Lots of fans out in support of the riders as they negotiate a small cobbled section. The gap to the breakaway is now down to two minutes and 14 seconds.

  41. 1458: 

    The peloton are starting to push on because the two Australians at the front - Wurf and Bobridge - are riding at an impressive pace. The gap is coming down, with 70km to go, and now stands at two minutes and 30 seconds.

  42. 1452: 

    Today marks two years since Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt died in a crash on the third stage of the Giro d'Italia.

    The Leopard-Trek rider fell at high speed during a descent about 25km (15.5 miles) from the finish of the stage from Reggio Emilia to Rapallo.

    In May 2010, Weylandt won the third stage of the Giro d'Italia from Amsterdam to Middelburg in the Netherlands.

  43. 1448: 

    Sir Bradley Wiggins' Team Sky team-mate Salvatore Puccio, who held the maglia rosa earlier in the race, stops on the side of the road for a wheel change. It's done in super quick time and he's soon on his way. We're just over half-way now with 80km still to go.

  44.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Ben in Chertsey: "Whatever happened to Mark Renshaw? Best lead out man in the works seems to have sunk without trace since leaving Cav to go for sports for himself. OPQS should get him in to beef up their lead out train."

    He's part of the Team Blanco squad, but is currently recovering from a broken collarbone following a crash in the Tour of Turkey last month.

  45. 1440: 

    Cameron Wurf and Jack Bobridge are still stealing the limelight at the front with their lead stable at around two minutes and 35 seconds. Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish, with the support of their team-mates, are looking comfortable towards the front of the peloton.

  46.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Alex Garner: "Cav still world's best but last two seasons have shown how incredible the HTC train was. Looks almost human without them. Almost."

  47. 1430: 

    One of the three Bardiani riders marooned on the wrong side of the dual carriageway has stopped, got off his bike and reached over to get his lunch. Well, what can you do when hunger strikes?

  48. 1425: 
    Food and drink

    Bizarrely, a group of three Bardiani riders have gone one side of the central reservation of a dual carriageway, while the rest of the peloton have gone the other side. The trio look mildly concerned that they might not be able to get back over to the other side.

    If there isn't an opening, they'll have to stop and climb over the barrier, which would be rather embarrassing. More importantly, it looks like they'll miss out on lunch, too, as we approach the feed zone.

  49.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Grant Wyeth: "Team Sky have been quiet by their standards so far. Max of 3 riders protecting Wiggo. Energy saving for the mountains perhaps?"

  50. 1420: 

    Cameron Wurf and Jack Bobridge look comfortable up front, but their lead is down to three minutes as the peloton ups the pace. Wurf take the big points in the second intermediate sprint, ahead of Bobridge.

    Elia Viviani takes third ahead of Mark Cavendish, the latter deciding not to compete for that spot. Maybe he's waiting for the final sprint where the big points - 25 to be exact - are up for grabs for the winner.

  51.  
    GET INVOLVED

    Charlie Rayner in Battersea: "It has got to be another win for Cav today. I would like to see a more commanding lead out train than stage one though."

  52. 1414: 

    Cameron Wurf has taken the maximum points at the first intermediate sprint ahead of Jack Bobridge. Further back, there's a break in the peloton as the Cannondale team hit the gas in pursuit of the final few points. It works, as their man Elia Viviani outsprints Mark Cavendish to third place. Still, it's a useful three points for Cavendish, who lost the red jersey by a single point last year,

  53. 1409: 

    This will be the first time Margherita di Savoia will host a stage finish in the Giro d'Italia. The town is famous for its salt works, which are not only the largest in Europe for their size and production - six million tons per year - but also a protected nature zone as a habitat for rare species of water birds.

  54. 1405: 

    Cheng Ji, the first Chinese rider to compete in the Giro d'Italia, has become the third man to withdraw from this year's race. The 25-year-old Argos-Shimano rider was ill overnight and has a fever.

    "He did not eat this morning and felt very weak," said Edwin Achterberg, the team physician. "We don't want to take any risks - health comes first."

    There are now 204 riders remaining in the race.

  55. 1401:  
    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra will have live commentary with Simon Brotherton and Rob Hayles from 1530 BST. You'll also be able to listen to their dulcet tones live on this very website - check out the cycling pages.

  56. 1358: 

    There's four people gaggled round a pothole near the finish line with a bucket and what I hope is cement of the quick-drying variety. The race is on for the filler to harden with the field expected to arrive in the finish in a couple of hours time.

  57. 1355: 
    RED POINTS JERSEY

    Having mentioned the sprinter's red points jersey, I thought it worth mentioning the current standings. Race leader Luca Paolini leads the way on 35 points, five ahead of yesterday's stage winner John Degenkolb and 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans. Britain's Mark Cavendish is lurking two points further adrift.

  58. 1352: 
    CAVENDISH WATCH

    There's plenty to keep Mark Cavendish busy today with a pair of intermediate sprints in Trani (64.9km) and Bareletta (76.4km) before he goes for the big points and glory at the stage finish. Success at each of those sectors will be key if Cav has serious hopes of winning the sprinter's red points jersey.

    As previous mentioned, this stage is super flat, with a small bump in the middle, and weaves its way along the Adriatic coast, passing through Bari before heading towards Margherita di Savoia for two laps of the 16.6km Circuito Delle Saline that precedes the finish.

  59. 1348: 

    The 169km sixth stage is already well under way, but you've not missed much. Two Australians - Jack Bobridge and Cameron Wurf - bravely launched an attack after 14km and have stretched their lead over the peloton to just over six minutes with 135km remaining. Neither rider is in general classification contention, though - and both are likely to get caught in the closing stages ahead of a bunch sprint.

  60. 1345: 

    Yesterday, the finish in Matera resembled a reservoir, with heavy rain causing flooding and drenching the many hundreds of fans who had arrived hours early to secure their viewing spot.

    Today, things couldn't be more different as the finish in Margherita di Savoia is swamped in sunshine, with jackets and gillets replaced by T-shirts and shorts. There's a real party atmosphere down there, with the town decorated with pink balloons, bunting and flags.

  61. 1342: 
    GET INVOLVED

    It's that time of the afternoon when I call on you, good fans of cycling, to come forward and let me know your thoughts on the Giro d'Italia so far.

    Who has impressed you? Who has surprised you? Is today the day for Mark Cavendish to taste the sweet nectar of victory for the second time in this year's race and 12th time overall? And what of Sir Bradley Wiggins' bid to win the second biggest Tour on the cycling calendar?

    You know the drill. Tweet me using the hashtag #bbccycling or fire over a text on 81111 (UK only), remembering to put your name on those messages.

  62. 1339:  
    Pink Jersey, Giro d'Italia leaderOVERALL STANDINGS

    So after yesterday's stage, nothing has changed at the top of the general classification with Italian Luca Paolini retains the pink jersey for a third successive day.

    1. Luca Paolini (Italy/Katusha) 19:56:39"

    2. Rigoberto Uran (Colombia/Team Sky) +17"

    3. Benat Intxausti (Spain/Movistar)+26"

    4. Vincenzo Nibali (Italy/Astana)+31"

    5. Ryder Hesjedal (Canada/Garmin)+34"

    Selected others:

    6. Bradley Wiggins (Britain/Team Sky) +34"

    10. Cadel Evans (Australia/BMC Racing)+42"

  63. 1336: 
    WIGGINS WATCH
    Bradley Wiggins

    Yesterday's stage featured a dramatic finish as Argos-Shimano's Luca Mezgec suffered a heavy fall when he braked on fresh paint on the zebra crossing at the final corner. Mexgec hit the deck, causing carnage around him.

    Sir Bradley Wiggins was held up - as were rivals Vincenzo Nibali and Ryder Hesjedal - but they were all awarded the same time as stage winner John Degenkolb because the crash happened inside the final 3km.

  64.   
    Rob Hayles, Former GB cyclist and 5 live sports extra commentator

    "Mark Cavendish had a decent ride yesterday and he almost got back onto the back of the pack after dropping off. I spoke to Tom Steels, one of the Omega Pharma Quick Step directors, and he said they took the decision to hold back most of their riders on the climb with an eye on stage six. It's shorter than yesterday's stage and is basically pan-flat. It's one of three chances for out-and-out sprinters like Cavendish."

  65. 1333: 
    Italy up

    Hello and a very warm welcome to live text commentary of stage six of the 2013 Giro d'Italia. Opportunities for sprinters are few and far between on this year's route, so Cavendish will be keen not to miss out on glory on today's 169km pan-flat stage from Mola di Bari to Margherita di Savoia.

  66. 1330: 

    Mark Cavendish looked to be in a world of pain in yesterday's fifth stage of the Giro d'Italia, weaving all over the road as he battled to get to the top of the category four climb and give himself a chance of sprinting to victory.

    With help from his Omega Pharma Quick Step team-mates, it looked like the Manxman might just do it - but with around 7km to go, he and his team-mates ran out of legs. Today, though, things should be much easier for Cavendish as he searches for his 12th Giro stage victory.

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