Tour de France: Tom Dumoulin gets 20 second time penalty for drafting

Ross Houston
July 14, 2018

Dutchman Groenewegen showed impressive power to burst clear of Quick-Step Floors' Fernando Gaviria and world champion Peter Sagan of Bora-Hansgrohe at the top of a gradual climb to the finish of the 231-kilometre stage from Fougeres. The peloton will set off in a few minutes for their roll through the neutralised section that takes them out of Dreux - the hometown of former France midfielder Patrick Vieira - before race director Christian Prudhomme gets the stage under way "proper" at KMO at around 10.50am.

"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. Froome trails race leader Greg Van Avermaet by 1:02.

Three years after finishing second to Alexis Vuillermoz at Mûr-de-Bretagne, the UAE Team Emirates rider won the queen stage of Brittany ahead of another AG2R-La Mondiale, Pierre Latour, to score his second Tour de France stage win five years.

Greg Van Avermaet held on to the yellow jersey he grabbed on stage three and doubled his lead over Geraint Thomas to six seconds by winning an intermediate bonus sprint. "Today the legs were good and everything was OK", said Groenewegen, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo. It's challenging enough for the racers who specialize in the one-day spring classics over that terrain.

After crossing the line, Groenewegen placed his finger to his lips in a gesture of silence. I didn't think it was going to happen, but the legs just were there.

"It was quite long - 230k". The French rider with the Wanty-Groupe Gobert team established an advantage of more than eight minutes _ the biggest breakaway lead in this year's Tour _ before being caught by the pack with 90 kilometres to go. But, in the end, it came down to a bunch sprint as expected.

For 13 miles of Sunday's stage, the pack of more than 170 cyclists will shake, rumble and chatter their way across the lumpy cobbles of northern France between Arras and Roubaix.

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