Mark Cavendish of Team Highroad - HTC sprinted to his fifth stage win at this years tour, edging out Thor Hushovd and Gerald Ciolek. This stage win breaks the British record of 8 total tour stage wins, with Cavendish's ninth career win.

Alberto Contador remains in the Maillot Jaune leading into the mountain top finish at Mont Ventoux.

Stage 19 Results
1 Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team Columbia - HTC - 3:50:35
2 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team
3 Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Team Milram
4 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Silence - Lotto
5 Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank
6 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step
7 Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Skil-Shimano
8 Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale
9 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux
10 Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Slipstream

General classification after stage 19
1 Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana - 77:06:18
2 Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank - 0:04:11
3 Lance Armstrong (USA) Astana - 0:05:21
4 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Garmin - Slipstream - 0:05:36
5 Andreas Klöden (Ger) Astana - 0:05:38
6 Fränk Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank - 0:05:59
7 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas - 0:07:15
8 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - Slipstream - 0:10:08
9 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française des Jeux - 0:12:37
10 Mikel Astarloza Chaurreau (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi - 0:12:38

Full results here..

Jersey Standings:
Alberto Contador
Thor Hushovd
Franco Pellizotti
Andy Schleck

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Links to news sites...

"Fabulous five for Cavendish
Sprinters survive as GC men lay low ahead of Ventoux stage

Cervelo TestTeam's Thor Hushovd may be the most consistent sprinter of the 2009 Tour de France, but any doubts about who was the best sprinter in La Grande Boucle ended Friday in Aubenas as Mark Cavendish shot home for his fifth stage win of the Tour.

There were plenty of factors which should have prevented Cavendish from winning: A 14 kilometre category two climb raced flat-out whose summit lay 16 clicks from the finish; the last of the escapees caught only 1.3 kilometres from the line; and slightl uphill in the last 500 metres could have played havoc with the sprinters' teams. " Read more from CyclingNews...

"Contador keeps Tour lead; Cavendish wins stage

AUBENAS, France - Alberto Contador stayed in command at the Tour de France with two days of racing left while teammate Lance Armstrong remained in third place as a daunting mountain climb awaits.

Mark Cavendish of Britain captured Friday's 19th stage in a sprint finish. He became the first racer to win five stages in a single Tour since Armstrong in 2004.

"This is a high point in my career," Cavendish told French TV.

Cavendish edged Thor Hushovd of Norway and Gerald Ciolek of Germany on the relatively flat, 111-mile ride from Bourgoin-Jallieu to Aubenas. Hushovd most likely will win the green jersey awarded to the Tour's best sprinter. They all finished in 3 hours, 50 minutes, 35 seconds.

Armstrong, the seven-time champion, had the same time. He trimmed four seconds off his deficit to Contador and second-place Andy Schleck of Luxembourg." Read more from the AP...

"Cavendish makes it a record nine on Tour de France

AUBENAS, France - Mark Cavendish set a new British record for stage wins on the Tour de France when he sprinted to his fifth win of this year's Tour de France on the 19th stage here Friday.

Cavendish, who rides for Columbia, held off green jersey rival Thor Hushovd of Norway with a wicked turn of pace in the final few hundred metres of the sprint after he had been led in by teammate Tony Martin.

Hushovd finished second while Germany's Gerald Ciolek of Milram took third on the 178km stage which began in Bourgoin-Jallieu and which failed to produce a winning breakaway.

Ahead of Saturday's 20th stage, which includes the 21.1km climb to the summit of the Mont Ventoux, Spaniard Alberto Contador of Astana remains the race leader with a 4min 11sec lead on Luxembourg's Andy Schleck.

Third place overall, Lance Armstrong finished just behind the sprinters to close his gap to Contador by four seconds, although the American is still over five minutes off the pace of his teammate at 5:21." Read more from the AFP...

"Cavendish wins stage 19 as Ventoux looms

Columbia's Mark Cavendish won 19th stage of the Tour on Friday, a hilly stage tucked between the Annecy time trial and the penultimate Mont Ventoux stage.

All the GC favorites and race leader Alberto Contador finished safely in the front group, setting up a battle for the Parisian podium on the slopes of Mont Ventoux Saturday. Lance Armstrong (Astana) was the only GC favorite on the right side of a four-second split at the end, picking up a small edge going into the final two days.

Cavendish's win also set up an exciting finish to the sprinter's competition, which may not be settled until the final meters of the race on Champs-Elysees Sunday. Current green jersey holder Thor Hushovd was second on the day. Hushovd now has 260 points, to Cavendish's 235. " Read more from