World champion Mark Cavendish recovered from hitting the tarmac yesterday to lead the peloton at the intermediate sprint on stage five of the Tour de France.
The 27-year-old from the Isle of Man missed an opportunity to take his tally of Tour stage wins to 22 as a result of a heavy crash on stage four, but began today's 196.5-kilometre fifth stage from Rouen to Saint-Quentin nursing cuts and bruises and a new world champion's rainbow jersey.
Matthieu Ladagnous (FDJ-Bigmat), part of the day's four-man breakaway, led the Tour at the intermediate sprint, leaving the first rider of the peloton 11 points to claim.
With support from Team Sky colleagues Bernhard Eisel, who required stitches in a cut above his eye following the crash, and Edvald Boasson Hagen, Cavendish won the dash for the intermediate sprint line 87.5km from the end of the day's route.
Matt Goss (Orica-GreenEdge) was one place behind Cavendish in sixth, with Mark Renshaw (Rabobank) seventh and Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) eighth.
The result meant Cavendish trimmed Sagan's points classification lead by just three points.