SARZEAU, France (Reuters) - Tour de France debutant Fernando Gaviria claimed his second stage win on Tuesday when he outsprinted his rivals in the fourth stage, a 195-km stretch from La Baule to Sarzeau. The Quick-Step Floors rider launched his sprint far from the line, and made sure of the win with a second burst of speed to beat world champion Peter Sagan and German Andre Greipel into second and third place respectively.
“We wanted to wait to the last moment to launch but it was too hard. I’m really happy anyway,” said Gaviria, a Colombian. Belgian Greg van Avermaet retained the overall leader’s yellow jersey. Sagan’s second place meant the Slovakian retained the green jersey for the points classification ahead of Gaviria.”He’s faster than me but it’s ok,” Sagan said candidly. Hours before France play Belgium in the soccer World Cup semi-final, two Belgian and two French riders broke away but stood little chance as the pace was controlled by the sprinters’ teams on a flat terrain featuring a four-kilometre final strait. The last of them, Belgium’s Guillaume van Keirsbulck, was only reined in one kilometre from the finish in the hometown of International Cycling Union (UCI) president David Lappartient. The Tour’s top guns enjoyed a quiet day in the saddle, with the exception of Russian Ilnur Zakarin, who was caught at the wrong end of a late pile-up and lost 59 seconds. Wednesday’s fifth stage is a 204.5-km hilly ride from Lorient to Quimper that should favour the one-day Belgian classic specialists such as Van Avermaet.
Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Catherine Evans