2011 Tour de France Stage Winners
Belgian Philippe Gilbert won his first career Tour de France stage. Being the first day of the Tour, he took the yellow jersey as well.
The team time trial was part of the Tour for the second time in three years. Like in 2009, an American team won. Garmin-Cervelo took the stage and put Thor Hushovd in the yellow jersey.
Garmin-Cervelo's success continued into the third stage where its sprinter, Tyler Farrar, picked up his long-awaited first career stage win. Farrar saluted late friend Wouter Weylandt after he crossed the finish line. Weylandt crashed and died during the Giro d'Italia in May.
The overall contenders finally went at it, with Cadel Evans (right) edging two-time champion Alberto Contador (left) for the victory.
It was a day for the sprinters, and that usually means success for Mark Cavendish. The Manx Missile notched his 16th career Tour de France stage win.
Edvald Boasson Hagen
Norway reigned in this sprint finish. Edvald Boasson Hagen (black jersey) won his first career stage, while Thor Hushovd placed third and retained his yellow jersey.
On a day his countryman Bradley Wiggins was forced to abandon the Tour due to a broken collarbone, Cavendish softened the blow for Britain with his second stage win in the first week.
Rui Alberto Costa
A first-category climb took the sting out of the sprinters, leaving little-known Portuguese rider Rui Alberto Costa to nab the biggest win of his career.
Luis Leon Sanchez
Rabobank rider Luis Leon Sanchez picked up his third career Tour stage victory, but the big news came farther back in the pack. Thomas Voeckler overtook Thor Hushovd for the yellow jersey.
With Tyler Farrar's win in Stage 3, the mantle of best sprinter never to win a Tour stage fell on Andre Greipel. The German finally broke through by edging Cavendish, his former teammate.
The Manx Missile left no doubt this time. Mark Cavendish came back from his close loss the day before to take the stage and the green jersey.
Stage 12 began the riders' ascent into the Pyrenees. Spain's Samuel Sanchez, the Olympic road race champion, added his first career Tour stage win to his five career Vuelta stages.
The God of Thunder roared loudly on a mountain stage. Thor Hushovd is known for his sprinting prowess, but he put together the most impressive performance of the Tour to cross first in the Pyrenees.
The final day in the Pyrenees saw Belgian climber Jelle Vanendert claim his first career Tour stage. Yellow jersey wearer Thomas Voeckler held with the Tour favorites to thrust his name into the conversation for the overall title.
Mark Cavendish (left) won his fourth stage of the Tour, making it four straight years of at least four stage wins. Cavendish held onto the sprinter's green jersey going into the second and final rest day.
Thor Hushovd's second stage victory of this Tour de France was largely overlooked by Alberto Contador's upward movement in the rankings. Contador gained several seconds on Thomas Voeckler, who still held the yellow jersey, and moved into sixth overall.
Edvald Boasson Hagen
Edvald Boasson Hagan pedaled 111 miles through the Alps in 4 hours, 18 minutes for the Stage 17 victory. Thomas Voeckler held onto the yellow jersey for another stage but lost time, while Alberto Contador stayed 3 minutes, 15 seconds behind.
Team Leopard rider Andy Schleck of Luxembourg cycles up the Col du Galibier during the 18th stage of the Tour de France from Pinerolo to Galibier Serre-Chevalier.
Frenchman Pierre Rolland (bottom) slid past former Tour champion Alberto Contador toward the top of a 6,100 foot final climb in the Alps to win by 14 seconds as the race headed into its last two stages.
The Tour's penultimate time trial went to Tony Martin, who not coincidentally won a time trial in the Criterium du Dauphine on a very similar course in June. Cadel Evans was second and took over the yellow jersey, putting him in position to win his first Tour after the ceremonial ride through Paris.
One last win for Mark Cavendish. The British sprinter closed the 2011 Tour on the Champs-Elysees with his 20th career stage win and his first career sprinters' title and green jersey. Cadel Evans sipped champagne as he rode to his first overall title.