ToM 2008: Stage 5 finish in Jefferson City

The Tour of Missouri 2008 Stage 5 finish in Jefferson City made a beautiful scene as the stage concluded with 2 2/3 laps of a circuit around the Missouri stage capitol building.

The race came into town just about 6PM--which seemed to be perfect for the very enthusiastic crowd to stop by at the end of a work week.

The circuit finish is very spectator friendly. The crowd is able to see the peloton and convoy several times and watch the end of race strategy play out.

Stage 5 saw a breakaway develop early on with some strong riders, including Mark Cavendish, who won two sprint finishes early on this week. When the break passed the Sprint Point at Vienna, it had somewhere over 4 minutes.

However the break was swallowed up just before arrival at the circuits in Jefferson City. This set the scene for a sprint finish, which ended at the top of a fairly steep hill just in front of the capitol building.

Apparently Cavendish started his sprint just a bit late--he ended up in fourth place and the stage was taken by Rabobank's Boy van Poppel.

Complete photos from the Jefferson City finish are here, or view as a slideshow here. Complete Tour of Missouri 2008 photo collections are here. Selection of photos from the Stage 5 finish area is below:

Tour of Missouri bicycling cap signed by rider David Veilleux