Stickybottle

Dan Martin dodges a bullet as Groenewegen wins at Tour

Posted on: July 13th, 2018

Dan Martin found himself on the wrong side of  a significant split but the gap closed. At the finish Dylan Groenewegen won Tour de France stage 7.

 

By Graham Gillespie

LottoNL-Jumbo’s Dylan Groenewegen powered home to take a sprint victory in stage 7 of the Tour de France at Chatres.

Fernando Gaviria of QuickStep made his move with about 300 metres of a lightly uphill finish to go.

However, Groenewegen surged past Gaviria with about 150 metres left to win comfortably. Green jersey holder Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe) finished third

BMC’s Greg Van Avermaet extended his yellow jersey lead by picking up three bonus seconds today. The Belgian is now six seconds clear of Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas.

Dan Martin (UAE Team Emirates) finished safely in the peloton after his victory yesterday.

He earlier had some work to do when the peloton split in two in crosswinds. He found himself 40 seconds back the road but his team closed the gap.

Martin remains 21st overall, some 1:30 off yellow. Tomorrow’s stage into Amiens looks like another for the sprinters.

And then on Sunday Dan Martin faces a big test; fifteen sections of pavé on the road to Roubaix.

 

Top down: Offredo up the road solo, Bardet finishes with Dan Martin just  behind, Van Avermaet is having a great run in yellow.

 

Overall, today was a fairly uneventful day on the 232km stage from Fougéres to Chartres. The course was mostly flat with one small category four climb in the middle of the race.

The only significant attack came from Wanty-Groupe Gobert’s Yoann Offredo. He put in a massive effort to stay clear for over 100 kilometres.

As Offredo was 11 minutes behind in the general classification, the peloton let him stretch his advantage out to as much as nine minutes.

He was able to create this lead as the tempo of the race was extremely slow.  For his troubles, Offredo picked up a KOM point on the cat 4 climb at Côte du Buisson de Perseigne.

He also unsurprisingly picked up the combativity award for his solo ride. With 90 kilometres to go, however, Offredo’s spell out front finally ended.

Next was an intermediate sprint which came 61.5km out from Chartres.

Laurent Pichon (Fortuneo–Samsic) took the maximum 20 points on offer, with Gaviria piping Sagan to second.

The peloton would stay intact for the bunch finish won by Groenewegen after FDJ Groupama had initially looked in control.

 

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