Unbelievable scenes as Ireland's Dan Martin wins Tour de France stage

Unbelievable scenes as Ireland's Dan Martin wins Tour de France stage

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Van Avermaet leads Britain's Geraint Thomas (Sky) by three seconds in the overall standings, with American Tejay van Garderen (BMC) and France's Julian Alaphilippe (Quick Step) at five and six seconds respectively. Martin's timing was perfectly judged and he was able to hold on to the lead until he crossed the line.

Slovakian cyclist Peter Sagan on Wednesday picked up his second stage win at this year's Tour de France, outsprinting Italy's Sonny Colbrelli and Belgian Philippe Gilbert to win stage five. I'm really grateful. I was behind Kristoff and he was going, I stayed in is wheel and thought now is the moment.

"I have my own style", he said when asked about his similarity to the veteran Manxman with 39 stage wins under his belt.

It was a first stage win of this Tour for the LottoNL-Jumbo rider and the second of his career after victory on the final stage in Paris previous year.

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Jack Bauer of team Mitchelton-Scott finished the climb behind Skujins but then pushed on to build a gap of 20 seconds with 12km remaining.

Chris Froome and Adam Yates finished safely in the front group with no major changes to the general classification.

"I came to this team to be the leader and the pressure at the beginning, of being the leader is why I didn't do so well in Spring", said Martin. "I had no legs to beat the first two guys". I think I went too early in the sprint.

This is already his 10th stage win in Tour de France. After the relatively flat first nine days, the race will head south and into the Alps and then the Pyrenees Mountains. He has added to his green jersey points total in every road stage of Tour so far, with wins in stage 2 and 5 and runner-up performances in stages 1 and 4.

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"If tomorrow is like that and all goes well on the cobbles on Sunday, it would be great to go into the rest day with the yellow", said Van Avermaet, who will be helping GC contender Richie Porte to keep out of trouble on the Roubaix stage.

Today he certainly made good on his threat. The Dutchman was seventh going into this stage, only 13 seconds behind Van Avermaet, but will now be a minute behind.

Friday will see the riders take on the longest stage of the race at 218km when they take off from Fougeres and finish in Chartres.

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