Saturday June 29th, 2013

Stage 1Porto-Vecchio / Bastia

Start 12h15 GMT 2+

Marcel Kittel - «It's like gold on my shoulders!»

interview29.06.2013Stage 1- Porto-Vecchio / Bastia

When picking possible winners for what promised to be a sprint stage, Marcel Kittel's name came up often. He was sick in the opening days of his first Tour de France last year and abandoned without having had a chance to do what he does best. But he made up for it today by surviving the chaos on the run in to Bastia, following the right wheels in the frenzy of the final kilometres and launching a blistering sprint that netted him first in the stage, the yellow jersey, green jersey and white jersey.

“This morning I just thought I'd try to go a good race, that's what I always think before line up at the start. I was just trying to do my best and now we've got the yellow jersey. This is absolutely awesome and I really cannot believe it.
“There was a big fight for the stage win, of course – as we knew that the winner would also have yellow – and everyone tried to stay in front so there was a lot of chaos but I'm very happy that my team worked so well to keep me out of trouble and keep me in a good position and to keep me safe.
“It's perfect to have the yellow jersey: it's like gold on shoulders and I'm so, so happy that I can wear it today.
“The finish was hectic. Chaotic. There were quite a lot of crashes and then, in the end, we had to do a lead-out that was far from normal. We had to go really early, with one-and-a-half kilometres to go to the finish.
“Unfortunately some of my sprint rivals crashed today and it's always nice to compete against the best and to show that you can also win against them, not only if there's a crash. I'm looking forward to the next stages to sprint against André [Greipel] and Mark [Cavendish]. To be honest though, I don't want to even think about the next few stages; right now I just want to enjoy the yellow jersey and we'll see what happens tomorrow.
“When I see the images on the television, I'm still speechless. It was a pretty unusual sprint compared to what we normally do because there was no real lead-out train in the end. Everyone was looking to us and we had to go really early. In the end, I had to stay in the wheel of Marcel Sieberg – I think that's who it was, but it might have been Jurgen Roelandts – and then, when I saw the 180 metres sign, I just went full-gas and sprinted with all I have.
“I was shocked, to be honest... but in the best way for how you can feel shocked! It's a dream that's crome true now and I'm so, so proud for my team, myself and everyone who has supported me and believed I could win the stage today.”

Stage 1 Porto-Vecchio / Bastia

All about the stage key moments

Jersey wearers after the stage 21

Classifications after the stage 21

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Survey

These five riders have won sprint stages of the 100th Tour de France. Of these five, who do you think will win in Paris?

  • Marcel Kittel14.93%
  • Simon Gerrans1.08%
  • Mark Cavendish54.21%
  • AndrĂ© Greipel5.5%
  • Peter Sagan24.28%
14123 votes

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