[QODLink]
Cycling

Viviani takes yellow jersey at Paris-Nice

German rider Marcel Kittel wins the second stage edging a sprint finish against overall race leader Elia Viviani.
Last Modified: 05 Mar 2013 18:39
Stage winner Kittel completed the 200.5km flat trek from Vimory to Cerilly in 5 hours, 42 minutes, 18 seconds [AFP]

Germany's Marcel Kittel won the second stage of the Paris-Nice race, a 200.5km ride from Vimory to Cerilly, on Tuesday.

However, the overall lead is held by Italian Elia Viviani, who benefited from overnight leader French champion Nacer Bouhanni crashing out of the race when he came to grief 58km from the finish and suffered a mouth injury.

"He has a split lip, and maybe a damaged tooth, he is also complaining of a sore arm," his team sporting director Frank Pineau told France Television, adding he had been taken to hospital in nearby Bourges.

The 24-year-old Kittel - who counts a stage win on the Tour of Spain in 2011 amongst his honours - overtook four riders, including Viviani, to take the stage in a sprint finish.

Viviani finished second with Australian Leigh Howard taking the final place on the podium.

Big win

"I am very happy to have had this opportunity," said Kittel.

"After the first stage, I was very disappointed not to have a chance to win because I had a puncture about 10km from the finish.

"It's important for me to win a race on the WorldTour and also to do it so early in the season but it is probably the last chance for me to win on this year's Paris-Nice," he added.

Viviani has a seven second lead to protect over Frenchman Sylvain Chavanel with compatriot Damien Gaudin third overall and a further second adrift.

"It gives me great satisfaction to have the yellow jersey which was my objective," enthused Viviani.

"I didn't win the stage but Kittel was very strong, too strong for me today.

"I've taken a look at the profile for the next stage and it's going to be difficult to retain the jersey but I have a good team and I'm going to try my best."

Stage three features a 170.5km ride from Chatel-Guyon to Brioude and includes a category two climb just 15km from the finish.

355

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.

Featured
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Since she was 16-years-old, Scottish Nationalist Party's Sturgeon has strove for independence from the UK.
Armed group's ransom success with German hostages marks a re-emergence, as authorities investigate ISIL links.
Western nations are moving into the resource-rich country after decades of disinterest, challenging China's interests.