Besseges 2: Cooke into the lead

Unibet is on fire in France after Baden Cooke won today's second stage of the Etoile des Besseges an


Unibet is on fire in France after Baden Cooke won today’s second stage of the Etoile des Besseges an

PIC BY TOURDOWNUNDER Australian Baden Cooke ( has taken the leader’s jersey in the Etoile de Bessges after winning the second stage between Nmes and Saint-Ambroix. Cooke beat Frenchman Sbastien Chavanel (Franaise Des Jeux) and Andre Greipel (T-Mobile) in a bunch sprint. “Jeremy Hunt piloted Baden Cooke perfectly in the final kilometre,” said team director Jacques Hanegraaf. “Hunt dropped a small gap behind him and Cooke easily won the stage.” Just like in the GP la Marseillaise, the Unibet riders had to wear different team jerseys because of a dispute over French gambling laws. “The French police forced us to wear the question mark outfits again,” said Hanegraaf. “These new outfits seem to motivate our riders. They are keen on a big performance to show that our team doens’t deserve this kind of treatment. And that’s the best way!” The 149 km stage was animated by Nicolas Crosbie, who attacked after just 3 km and spent most of the race alone, ahead of the field. His maximum advantage was only six minutes, and when he hit the five laps of the 7.3 km finishing circuit, he was swallowed by the bunch. Cooke won the final sprint ahead of Chavanel and Greipel, and took over the lead by virtue of winning bonus seconds in the intermediate sprints during the stage. Stage 2 results 1 Baden Cooke (Aus, 2 Sbastien Chavanel (Fra, Franaise Des Jeux) 3 Andr Greipel (Ger, T-Mobile) General classification after stage 2 1 Baden Cooke (Aus, 2 Angelo Furlan (Ita, Credit Agricole) 0:00:02 3 Sbastien Chavanel (Fra, Franaise Des Jeux) 0:00:06 Got a comment? Discuss this in the Procycling forum. What else is new? Check out the Procycling blog.