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“Anyone can easily lose one minute, but if you lose more than that it means you are on a bad day or you’ve crashed badly. I hope that doesn’t happen to anyone. The rain, though, is going to make it difficult for all of us....

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ASTANA QAZAQSTAN TEAM

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JAKOB FUGLSANG

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VINCENZO NIBALI

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08.07.2014 @ 23:21 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Vincenzo Nibali defended his overall lead in today's fourth stage of the Tour de France but the Italian has already turned his focus to tomorrow's feared stage on the cobbles. The Italian claims that a GC rider can easily lose a minute on the rough surface,

 

For race leader Vincenzo Nibali, today's fourth stage of the Tour de France was all about staying safe. He managed to do so as he finished in the peloton and so defended his yellow jersey.

 

“The stage wasn’t especially hard, but it was very nervous because of the wind," his teammate Jakob Fuglsang said. "Everyone wanted to be in the front in case the peloton broke up in the crosswinds."

 

Nibali now turns his attention to tomorrow's feared stage that includes 9 sectors of pavé.

 

"There are still important stages later in the race," he said. "But I think that there will be two races. One for the specialists with Cancellara and Sagan and one for the GC riders. It will be important to stay in front and not lose your head because this is an important day.

 

"For me, it will be new but we have done a recon of the stage. It will be important if there is rain because it can make it very dangerous.  I hope I can be at my best.

 

“Anyone can easily lose one minute, but if you lose more than that it means you are on a bad day or you’ve crashed badly. I hope that doesn’t happen to anyone. The rain, though, is going to make it difficult for all of us.

 

“I’ve never raced Paris-Roubaix before. I’ve raced the pavé in the Benelux Tour, but that’s different."

 

“Someone, without a doubt, will lose their Tour hopes on the pavé, so clearly it’s an important stage for us,” Team Manager Giuseppe Martinelli said. “We are hoping to do something better than the others, deliver a psychological blow.

 

“We’ll see two races, Contador racing against Nibali, Nibali against Contador, Froome watching them both. You know, it’ll be like the end of the world heading into the first pavé sector. Everyone wants to take it at the front."

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