The blue-fuchsia-green colors of Lampre-Merida led the race for most of the 190,5 km of the 7th stage of the Tour de France from Livarot to Fougères thanks to the good performance of Kristijan Durasek and the braveness in the sprint of Davide Cimolai.
The Croatian rider who won in 2015 the Tour of Turkey and the second stage of the Tour de Suisse, escaped from the bunch, leading the race with 4 other riders (Teklehaimanot, Maté, Delaplace and Feillu) with 3'50" being the maximum advantage. The peloton, which was led by the Lotto-Soudal and Etixx-QuickStep, neturalized the breakaway with 15 km to go.
In the run-in to the final kilometers, Pozzato (11 years ago, on July the 11th 2004, he won his first stage in the Tour de France) piloted Cimolai to the front positions and the Italian sprinter managed to finish in the top 10 for the third time in a row, taking 9th.
"We approached the sprint at an impressive rythm, we tok the bends in the final part of the course at a very high speed and in one of these turns I was forced to brake," Cimolai explained. "My speed dropped so I tried to retrieve positions on the final straight which was slightly uphill but I could not do better than ninth place.
"Best compliments to my team mate Durasek, who was in the breakaway. For a rider and the team it's always such an honor to be in the Tour de France breakaways."
Froome is the leader of the overall classification, Rui Costa is 24th at 3'58".
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|Ole Kristian FAGERLI|
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