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Cavendish wins 10th stage of Giro in sprint

 Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...
 Overall leader Alberto Contador sprays sparkling wine on the podium after completing the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race...
 Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...
 Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race, form Termo...
 Britain's Mark Cavendish, right, sprints ahead to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termoli to Teramo, Tuesda...
 Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...

Italy Giro Cycling

Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...

Italy Giro Cycling

Overall leader Alberto Contador sprays sparkling wine on the podium after completing the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race...

Italy Giro Cycling

Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...

Italy Giro Cycling

Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race, form Termo...

Italy Giro Cycling

Britain's Mark Cavendish, right, sprints ahead to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termoli to Teramo, Tuesda...

Italy Giro Cycling

Britain's Mark Cavendish celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia, Tour of Italy, cycling race form Termol...

British standout Mark Cavendish responded to a bit of controversy by winning the 10th stage of the Giro d'Italia in a sprint finish on Tuesday.
Race favorite Alberto Contador wore the pink jersey for the first time in this year's Giro and retained the overall lead.
Cavendish clocked 4 hours, 49 seconds over the mostly flat 159-kilometer (99-mile) route from Termoli to Teramo, which featured a slight uphill finish. Spanish sprinter Francisco Ventoso finished second and Italy's Alessandro Petacchi was third, both with the same time.
It was Cavendish's first victory in this year's Giro and the sixth in his career, having won two stages in 2008 and three in 2009.
Before the stage began, Ventoso said Cavendish should have been disqualified for getting help from his team car in Sunday's uphill finish on Mount Etna.
Cavendish was the 189th and last finisher on the volcano, crossing 26 minutes, 35 seconds behind stage winner Contador _ just 25 seconds within the cutoff that would have eliminated him from the race.
"It's shameful. Everyone else fights like crazy to finish within the maximum time and then some people attach themselves to the car and the judges don't intervene," Ventoso said.
During Tuesday's stage, Cavendish punctured a tire with 50 kilometers (32 miles) to go, but quickly rejoined the main pack after changing wheels.
After a rest day, the race path changed direction and began heading north along the Adriatic coast.
With schools closed for the occasion in Termoli, large crowds greeted the riders at the start.
During the opening kilometer (mile), two riders _ Pierre Cazaux of France and Fumiyuki Beppu of Japan _ broke away from the pack and Yuriy Krivstov _ who was born in Ukraine but recently became a French citizen _ soon caught up with them to form a three-man breakaway.
Cazaux, Beppu and Krivstov gained a lead of more than six minutes at one point but were caught by the main pack with 11 kilometers (seven miles) to go.
With 25 kilometers (16 miles) remaining, Belgian rider Kristof Vandewalle fell and bloodied his face, but got up and kept going after switching to a spare bike.
With three kilometers (two miles) to go, British rider David Millar attempted a solo breakaway but Cavendish's teammates chased him down and set up a perfect sprint for the Isle of Man rider.
Looking ahead, rider representatives met with race director Angelo Zomegnan and approved keeping the Crostis descent in Saturday's 14th stage after seeing videos and photos of protective mattresses and netting set up along the dangerous route.
Belgian rider Wouter Weylandt died when he crashed after clipping a wall during a descent in the fourth stage.
Wednesday's 11th stage is a hilly 144-kilometer (89-mile) leg from Tortoreto Lido to Castelfidardo.