If you’ve slept in for the TV coverage of De Ronde, no worries. From the time video went live, the most notable events were Cancellara’s first flat, Peter Sagan moving to the back of the cars for a fix on the go, and the presence of Omega Pharma-Quick Step on the front of the peloton heading into every climb and every cobble section.
OPQS has put three or four men on the front for much of the race, including French champion and Three Days of de Panne winner Sylvan Chavanel. A group off the front gained about three and a half minutes, and includes danger men Tyler Farrar, Pablo Lastras, Lars Booms, and a host of others.
SKY has been lurking near the front protected Flecha and Boasson-Hagan, as has BMC flooded the near-front with support for Husovd, Ballan, Hincapie and Gilbert. Cancellara took some time getting back to the front of the still-compact peloton, but has slipped back in with his main rivals.