Greipel takes Denmark opener
Cavendish held up behind crash in closing kilometres of stage one
Last Updated: 23/08/12 4:20pm
Andre Greipel: Took victory on first stage of Post Danmark Rundt
Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) claimed victory on the first stage of the Post Danmark Rundt to take the overall lead of the race while Mark Cavendish was held up behind a crash.
German rider Greipel, who won three stages in this year's Tour de France, sprinted to the line ahead of Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) and Theo Bos (Rabobank) in Randers.
Luke Rowe of Team Sky finished the sprint in fourth place, netting the best young rider's jersey in the process, while Stefan Schumacher (Christina Watches-Onfone) completed the top five.
Rowe's team-mate Cavendish did not feature in the final sprint, however, after he lost time behind a crash with around 4km to go.
Earlier in the stage Morten Hoberg (Team Concordia Forsikring-Himmerland), Jacob Nielsen (Blue Water Cycling), Paolo Locatelli (Colnago-CSF Inox) and Jesper Morkov (Denmark national team) had formed a four-man brekaway.
Hoberg took maximum points on all three of the day's hill sprints, ensuring he will wear the white and blue jersey of best climber on Thursday's second stage.
Morkov, meanwhile, was first across the line through all three intermediate sprints but his efforts could not prevent Greipel from taking the points jersey at the end of the stage.
Locatelli was dropped by his breakaway companions on one of the stage's short hills, leaving Hoberg, Neilsen and Morkov to push on ahead in an attempt to make it to the finish ahead of the main group.
But they could not stop the peloton from comfortably reeling them in, with Nielsen the last rider to be caught before the bunch set things up for the sprint finish.
There were some more fleeting attacks - and a costly crash - in the closing stages but the remainder of the bunch came to the finish together, where Greipel emerged as the winner.