Sensational Sagan clinches another Tour de France stage

Sensational Sagan clinches another Tour de France stage

Sensational Sagan clinches another Tour de France stage

Chris Froome, who is attempting to win a fifth straight Tour de France, finished in the middle of the pack in 14th and is 57 seconds behind Van Avermaet in the overall standings.

"I hit the back wheel of Bardet when there was the movement in the peloton and I couldn't avoid it", the Dutch rider said. "It's never good to lose time", said Bardet, who has finished on the podium in the past two Tours.

Tom Dumoulin, victor of the 2017 Giro D'Italia, suffered badly following a mechanical issue with only 5km to go, dropping 40 seconds on the leaders.

The sixth stage runs from Brest to Mur-de-Bretagne Guerledan, and also features significant elevation change.

He was then handed a 20-second penalty by the race jury for staying too long in his team car's slipstream. "Today the legs were good and everything was OK", said Groenewegen, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo. "I was picking wheels and seemed to be in a good position", Cavendish said. "I thought the corner was closer to the finish than it really was".

As the climb wore on, a strong headwind and a dramatic last- minute chase by Pierre Latour of Ag2r saw Martin just hold on by a mere second to claim victory from the Frenchman on the line, with Alejandro Valverde of Movistar a further two seconds back in third. While Porte headed for hospital, their likely Plan B Tejay Van Garderen - who started the day just nine seconds off yellow - got himself caught up in crashes and conceded more nearly six minutes to effectively rule himself out of contention.

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Belgium's Greg van Avermaet extended his overall race lead, as the yellow jersey gained three seconds by winning a bonus sprint. "The Tour is very long and we are only on the fifth stage".

A group of around 40 riders including Froome opened up a gap of over a minute, but Martin and the rest worked to reunite the peloton.

This was the first summit finish of this Tour.

Since the route was announced in October, this 156.5km stage nine over the cobbles of northern France to Roubaix had been circled as the wildcard which could deliver a jolt to the race, and it did not disappoint.

The Dutch cyclist, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo, clocked almost six hours over the 231-kilometer (143.5-mile) trek from Fougeres, home to the best-preserved and largest medieval fortress in Europe, to Chartres, site of a vast cathedral known for its stained-glass windows.

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