Ireland's Dan Martin wins sixth stage of Tour de France

Annette Crawford
July 13, 2018

As the climb wore on, a strong headwind and a dramatic last- minute chase by Pierre Latour of Ag2r saw Martin just hold on by a mere second to claim victory from the Frenchman on the line, with Alejandro Valverde of Movistar a further two seconds back in third.

Ireland's Daniel Martin celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the sixth stage of the Tour de France.

Martin began the day one minute and 40 seconds down on Greg van Avermaet in the yellow jersey, but picked up 13 seconds to move up to 21st overall in the general classification.

AG2R's Romain Bardet cracked in the heat of the final ascent and lost 31secs, while fellow contender Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb), the 2017 Giro d'Italia champion, lost almost a minute after suffering a mechanical problem.

"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 the UAE captain Martin.

He was then handed a 20-second penalty by the race jury for staying too long in his team car's slipstream.


"I thought about it (his second place in 2015) all day".

A group of five riders broke early on the 181km run from Brest to Mur-de-Bretagne and when the Quick Step team of stage contender Julian Alaphilippe suddenly accelerated on the flat, the peloton split into three with 100km remaining.

Dumoulin, the time trial world champion and 2017 Giro d'Italia victor, was slowed by a tire puncture at the foot of the final ascent and lost 53 seconds. I had really good legs and when I went my legs kept coming and coming, " Martin said. "I don't know what happened - maybe adrenaline - but I wasn't going to let anyone beat me".

A breakaway group of five riders - Laurent Pichon (Fortuneo-Samsic), Anthony Turgis (Cofidis), Dion Smith (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Damien Gaudin and Fabien Grellier (both Direct Energie) - hit the front from the off and built a gap of nearly seven minutes before it stabalised.

Thomas's teammate Chris Froome slipped a few seconds behind the front group in the closing metres, but worse luck befell the 2017 Giro d'Italia champion, Tom Dumoulin, who lost the best part of a minute, after puncturing 5km from the finish.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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