Peter Sagan Wins Tour de France Stage 5 In Exciting Uphill Finish

Greg Van Avermaet still retains the yellow jersey, while Michael Matthews dropped out due to illness.


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Peter Sagan clinched his second stage win of the 2018 Tour de France on Wednesday, narrowly beating Sonny Colbrelli and Alejandro Valverde at Stage 5’s exciting uphill finish in Brittany.

Defending champion Chris Froome and the other overall contenders finished in or close to the main group. Although overnight leader Greg Van Avermaet came in seventh, he retained his yellow jersey, keeping a two-second lead over his BMC teammate Tejay van Garderen and three seconds over Quick-Step Floors’ Philippe Gilbert.

Van Avermaet had pulled to the front in a bid for the stage win as the finish line approached, but couldn’t hold on when Sagan powered past on his left. Colbrelli pushed the Slovakian all the way, but came second in just behind him.

Sagan, who also won Stage 2, looks on track to win the green jersey in the Tour’s Points Classification. He’s finished either first or second in the four road stages so far, giving him a hefty advantage. Should he keep it up until Paris, he’ll earn his sixth green jersey after having won it five times in a row between 2012 and 2016.

Not all pre-race favourites had a good day. Michael Matthews of Sunweb pulled out of the Tour prior to Stage 5 due to sickness, his team said. The 27-year-old Australian won his maiden Tour de France stage in 2016 and earned two additional stage wins the following year.

Matthews also won the 2017 editions’s green jersey (though only after sprint rivals Mark Cavendish and Sagan were forced off the race due to injury and disqualification, respectively). But his hopes of challenging for the prize again came to an end prior to Wednesday’s start in Lorient.

This article originally appeared on bicycling.com.

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