Spaniard David Lopez Garcia won the fifth stage of the Tour of Germany between Sonthofen and Sölden on Tuesday, just ahead of race leader Jens Voigt.
The Caisse d'Epargne rider made the break 3km from the finish and resisted a fightback by defending champion Voigt to cross the line at 2670 metres altitude alone after 157.6km of racing. Voigt, wearing the yellow jersey since Saturday, finished 12sec behind and increased his advantage on rivals Damiano Cunego of Italy and American Levi Leipheimer.
"I felt good today, I hid myself at the beginning of the climb letting Discovery do the work. When they whispered in my ear that Leipheimer wasn't following that gave me a boost," explained 35-year-old Voigt, who won three stages on his way to victory last year.
Leipheimer, who finished third in the Tour de France, is now trailing 1min 30sec in the overall standings, with Cunego two minutes off the pace.
"There are now two stages which favour the sprinters. The race will be played out in Friday's time-trial; I like to think I'm in a favourable position," added Voigt, who is hoping to give German cycling a boost following recent high-profile doping cases.
Meanwhile, Colombian rider Rigoberto Uran underwent surgery after breaking several bones in a fall during Monday's fourth stage.
"He's broken ribs on both sides. The operation was long and complicated since he remained in the operating theatre until 5am this morning," Unibet.com sporting director Michel Lafis said.
Wednesday's sixth stage stays in Austria and covers 175km between Langenfeld and Kufstein.
© AFP 2007