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Tour de France, Stage 6: Mark Cavendish Earns Second Stage Win In As Many Days

This should end concerns and answer any questions critics may of had about Mark Cavendish. The Manx Missile won Friday's Stage 6, the longest of the Tour, a 141-mile ride from Montargis to Gueugnon -- his second consecutive stage win -- out-sprinting American Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) to the line.

For the second day in a row, it appeared that team Garmin-Transitions had the best position to launch Farrar, but for the second day in a row, it was HTC-Columbia that proved to be better organized with their positioning. And for the second day in row, it was HTC-Coulmbia's Mark Krenshaw, the best lead-out man in the world, once again perfectly delivering Cavendish to a stage win in the Tour de France, something he has now done 12 times over the past three years. 

A split time in the peloton allowed Geraint Thomas to gain three seconds, which may make the difference this weekend in the mountains, and could see Fabian Cancellara relinquishing the yellow jersey (which may be happening anyways, with Team Saxo bank likely shifting their efforts to helping Andy Schleck).

General Classification After Stage 6:

1. Fabian Cancellara, Team Saxo Bank
2. Geraint Thomas, Sky (+ 00:20)
3. Cadel Evans, BMC (+ 00:39)
4. Ryder Hesjedal, Garmin-Transitions (+ 00:46)
5. Sylvain Chavanel, Quick Step (+01:01)

9. Alberto Contador, Astana (+ 01:40)
18. Lance Armstrong, Radioshack (+ 02:30)


The 2010 Tour enters the Jura Mountains in Saturday's Stage 7, a 103-mile ride from Tournus to Station des Rousses. It features six total climbs, with the two most difficult saved for the end, the Col de la Croix de la Serra and the Cote de Lamoura, both second-category climbs reaching over 1,000 m (3,300 ft) in elevation. Expect a shake-up among the leaders after Saturday.

For more on all things Tour de France, head on over to Podium Cafe.