Although this photo is from the stage 1 finish of the Tour of Missouri it could have just as easily have been from today's 2nd stage that finished in very similar fashion in the southeast Missouri burg of Cape Girardeau. A mass field sprint, set up in the last few kilometers by some disorganized attempts to control the front by various factions from Kelly United, Cevello Test Team, and even a brief attempt by OUCH - all of which fell apart more than 300 meters from the line, ended with the usual suspects fighting for the same 3 spots on the podium. Although the 2nd and 3rd place riders switched positions from the day before, Cavendish laid down the same marker. Thor Hushold looked to have the stage in his pocket until Mark Cavendish jumped off his wheel and rode past with ease to take his second consecutive stage and stay in yellow for another day.
The Tour moves into the Ozarks for a couple of days that will allow some riders besides the sprinters to flex a little muscle. Although these hills can definitely put the hurt on the peleton, the Ozark stages offer the chance that a long break could stay away until the end. Such a well-placed break could give Columbia HTC the chance to move someone like George Hincapie into the race lead.