Matthew Goss of Australia won the third stage of the Giro d’Italia on Monday, while world champion Mark Cavendish and overall leader Taylor Phinney were involved in a crash in the high-speed sprint finish.
Phinney maintained the overall lead, since times are neutralised when there are crashes at the end of flat stages.
Cavendish, who won stage 2 ahead of Goss on Sunday, fell hard on his left shoulder but got up and carried his bike across the line.
Phinney injured his right foot and had scrapes on his right elbow. He limped up to the pink jersey podium celebration.
“The injury is fairly deep on my foot. I must have hit something when I fell,” Phinney said. “It’s too bad, but that’s cycling. Hopefully it’s nothing serious. It’s good that tomorrow is a rest day.”
Italian rider Roberto Ferrari caused the crash by cutting Cavendish off and was relegated to last place by the race jury.
Orica-GreenEdge rider Goss finished in 4 hours, 20 minutes, 53 seconds. Juan Jose Haedo of Saxo Bank finished second and Tyler Farrar of Garmin-Barracuda was third, both with the same time.
“My teammates rode really well today and I was happy I could finish it off for them and avoid the carnage behind,” said Goss, who won last year’s Milan-San Remo classic.
Goss climbed to 8th place overall, with the same time as fellow Australian Brett Lancaster, 23 seconds from the lead.
Monday’s stage featured an entirely flat 190km route beginning and ending in Horsens.
Six riders broke away at the start of the stage and established a lead of more than three minutes, but were then caught by the main pack with 25km to go.
The stage began with a minute of silence to remember Wouter Weylandt, the Belgian rider who died in last year’s third stage. The race also paid tribute to Horsens Mayor Jan Troejborg, who died Sunday of a heart attack while cycling.
After a rest day Tuesday, the race resumes in Italy with a 33.2km time trial in Verona on Wednesday.
Phinney won the opening time trial Saturday to become the first American to wear the pink jersey since Christian Vande Velde in 2008 and only the third all-time after Andy Hampsten won the race in 1988.
Phinney is not a contender for overall victory since he is not a good climber.