Tom Skujins of the Hincapie Racing Team pedalled to a surprising mountain stage win on the third day of the Tour of California on Tuesday (12 May).

The 23-year-old Latvian started the day in 95th position, 42 seconds behind Brit Mark Cavendish, but ended the day with a 32-second overall lead and the yellow jersey. Skujins completed the 105.7 mile road stage outside of San Jose in 4:33:10.

Peter Sagan of Slovakia finished second for the third straight day, a full minute and six seconds behind Skujins, but now second overall. Julian Alaphilippe of France was third in the same time.

Skujins broke away early with seven other riders. The small pack created a five-minute lead on the peloton at the base of Mt Hamilton, the first substantial climb of the race, before Skujins escaped and lead for the rest of the stage.

Cavendish, who won the first two stages of this year's race, finished 103rd in the remaining field of 134, more than 21 minutes behind the winner.

The race continues on Wednesday and Thursday with flat stages for the sprinters before Friday's time trial in the mountains around Big Bear Lake. The riders will finish the 724 mile course in Pasadena, outside Los Angeles, on Sunday.