Thor Hushovd swapped the world champion’s rainbow jersey for the maillot jaune after Garmin-Cervelo won the team time trial second stage of the Tour de France.
The Garmin-Cervelo squad clocked 24 minutes, 48 seconds over the 23km course in Les Essarts to earn their first Tour de France stage win and put Hushovd, third on Saturday’s opening stage, into the yellow jersey.
Hushovd’s team-mate David Millar, who at May’s Giro d’Italia became the first Brit to wear the leader’s jerseys in all three Grand Tours, lies second overall on the same time as Hushovd, while Cadel Evans, second behind Philippe Gilbert on stage one, is one second adrift in third.
Team Sky had hoped to move Geraint Thomas, already wearing the white jersey for best young rider, into the yellow jersey after the Welshman, part of Great Britain’s 2008 Olympic gold medal winning team pursuit quartet with Bradley Wiggins, finished sixth on stage one, six seconds behind Gilbert.
But while the British-based squad recorded the quickest time of nine minutes, one second at the 9km checkpoint, David Brailsford’s men faded to finish third behind Garmin and Evans’ BMC team.
“We attacked it like we said we would and it was a great effort by everyone,” said Thomas, who remains in the white jersey.
“We rode it well. We knew we were up [at the first checkpoint] but it wasn’t even a second and we lost two guys quite early.
“We are a bit disappointed as we really wanted to win but Brad [Wiggins] is still up there in the general classification and that’s what matters.”
Andy Schleck’s Leopard-Trek team, powered by four-time world time trial champion Fabian Cancellara, finished fourth, while defending champion Alberto Contador’s SaxoBank Sungard squad finished eighth.
That leaves Contador, who lost time after a crash on stage one, one minute, 41 seconds and one minute, 38 seconds behind Evans and Schleck, who have both twice finished second in the Tour.
Full results on letour.fr
1. Garmin-Cervelo (US) 24 minutes, 48 seconds
2. BMC Racing (US) +04″
3. Team Sky (GB) same time
4. Leopard-Trek (LUX) same time
5. HTC-Highroad (US) +05″
6. RadioShack (US) +10″
7. Rabobank (NED) +12″
8. Saxo Bank (DEN) +28″
9. Astana (KAZ) +32″
10. Omega Pharma-Lotto (BEL) +39″
1. Thor Hushovd (NOR/Garmin-Cervelo) 5h 6m 25s
2. David Millar (GB/Garmin-Cervelo) same time
3. Cadel Evans (AUS/BMC) +1″
4. Geraint Thomas (GB/Team Sky) +4″
5. Linus Gerdemann (GER/Leopard-Trek) same time
6. Frank Schleck (LUX/Leopard-Trek) same time
7. Fabian Cancellara (SWI/Leopard-Trek) same time
8. Edvald Boasson Hagen (NOR/Team Sky) same time
9. Manuel Quinziato (ITA/BMC) same time
10. Andy Schleck (LUX/Leopard-Trek) same time