Tuesday, 24 October, 2017

Fabio Aru claimed his maiden Tour de France win in Paris

No rest day Richie Porte prepares to start during stage seven of the Tour de France knowing it was a sprint stage Aru signals Tour ambitions with blistering attack
Garry Little | 08 July, 2017, 00:07

German Marcel Kittel of the Quick-Step Floors team won the seventh stage of the Tour de France, according to provisional results on Friday.

He still bettered his Sky teammate Geraint Thomas by 12 seconds, with Italian Fabio Aru two seconds further adrift.

Kittel looked to be struggling as the leaders roared towards the finish in Troyes but the powerful German sprinter ended up winning the sprint comfortably for his 11th Tour stage victory.

The Tour de France is the world's biggest and most iconic cycling race.

There is a gradual crescendo to the climbing in this Tour; after Wednesday's mountain top finish, on Saturday the screw turns up another notch with third- and second-category ascents before the first-category climb to the Combe de Laisia Les Molunes, 12km from the finish at Les Rousses.

"He's obviously going well but I think he's going to have more pressure on him now".

As the other contenders bunched together on the right side of the road, Kittel burst forward around them on the left and easily created a comfortable gap...

FDJ team director Thierry Bricaud says green jersey holder and Vittel stage victor Arnaud Demare is out to repeat the feat today.

Aru signals Tour ambitions with blistering attack
Tour de France Betting: Stage 6 Preview

"I had seen a video of Nibali's win and I tried to do the same to see what would happen", said 27-year-old Aru. "I'm not sure we will have a less tense sprint than two days ago in Vittel".

Porte finished fourth on the stage, 20 seconds behind stage victor Fabio Aru and just after new race leader Chris Froome.

Kittel moved into second in the points classification - one place and 47 points clear of Matthews - but said he wasn't thinking about eventual honours just yet.

A three-man breakaway rode out front for most of the stage.

The intermediate sprint for the day comes on the long opening drag, after 108 kilometres in Chanceaux. The whole day was a nervous one in the peloton.

"If anything we made a little bit of a mistake giving Aru that much space. It was quite a frantic finish".

Once over the climb, the race undulates before dropping away for a pancake-flat final 50 kilometres into Nuits-Saint-Georges, where the last five kilometres go slightly up and down, before a straight ahead drag to the line.

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