NIMES: Britain’s Mark Cavendish, riding for the Columbia team, won the 13th stage of the Tour de France here on Friday, a 182.5km ride from Narbonne to Nimes, while Australian Cadel Evans retained the leader’s yellow jersey.
Cavendish scored his fourth stage win of the event as he again proved master of the bunched sprint, edging out Australian Robbie McEwen of Silence and Frenchman Romain Feillu of Agritrubel to finish in 4hr 25min 42sec.
Germany’s Heinrich Haussler was fourth on the day ahead of Spaniard Oscar Freire.
Meanwhile, Italian Riccardo Ricco, kicked off the Tour de France for doping, was on Friday remanded in custody for “using a poisonous substance,” said Antoine Leroy, French state prosecutor for the town of Foix.
Spanish cycling team Saunier Duval earlier sacked Ricco following his positive doping control for EPO (erythropoietin). The 24-year-old Ricco became one of the major attractions of this year’s race when he stunned a host of big names to win two stages, one in the hilly Massif Central and the other, three days later, in the Pyrenees.
French judicial officials filed charges against Ricco for “use of a toxic substance,” said Antoine Leoy. — Agencies