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Tour of California 2012 Standings: Peter Sagan Takes Stage 1

The first stage of the tour of California is in the books, and Peter Sagan was able to overcome a punctured tire to win the first stage as part of the Liquigas-Cannondale. Sagan lost about 20 seconds due tot he mechanical issue late in the race, but he was able to storm back for the victory in Santa Rosa, California:

Sagan never panicked when his rear tire punctured with about 5 miles left and a pack of sprinters already in pursuit. In the end, the misfortune might've actually helped.

A crash swept up about a dozen riders - including one of the world's top sprinters, Michael Matthews - with about 3 miles remaining. Sagan shifted down and pedaled furiously, overtaking Haussler and Rodriguez in the final mile.

The 22-year-old nicknamed "Terminator'' pointed to the adoring crowd at the finish line and hoisted both hands in the air in triumph. Such a frantic, final sprint is unlikely.

The final results of Minnesota's Optimum Pro Cycling have not yet been posted.

For more on the Tour of California, check out this SB Nation Minnesota story stream.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.