Tour de France - Dylan Groenewegen: The legs are good now

Dan Martin surges to stage win at Mur-de Bretagne as Dumoulin loses time

Tour de France 2018: Dan Martin surges to stage win on Mûr-de-Bretagne as Tom Dumoulin loses time

"Today the legs were good and everything was OK", said Groenewegen, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo. "I managed to keep my sprint longer".

"It was a boring stage, no wind, no stress just boring, I was talking to everybody", he said.

Porte regularly trained with Thomas before the Tour and is a long-time friend of Froome, although that friendship has not been the same since the defending Tour champion worked against the Australian a year ago in a big pre-Tour race.

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.

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It would have put him level with Froome overall, but the Team Sunweb rider was later handed a 20 second penalty for drifting behind the team cars.

Van Avermaet, wearing the yellow jersey, then pulled to the front in a bid for the stage win as the finish line approached but peaked too early. "My team did a brilliant job all day and I wanted to finish it off", he said.

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.

Bardet was already trailing Froome, and after losing 28 seconds is now 1:45 off the leader's pace after he broke his back wheel and had to change bikes with Tony Gallopin. "It's never good to lose time", said Bardet, who has finished on the podium in the past two Tours. "Your team-mates can help you a bit but a lot of the time you'll find yourself on your own and need to do it yourself".

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Earlier in the day, Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) had sprinted for intermediate bonus seconds to slightly extend his lead in the general classification.

Having not long joining Team Emirates from Quick Step, Martin dedicated the win to his new team.

A group of around 40 riders including Froome opened up a gap of over a minute, but Martin and the rest worked to reunite the peloton. After the relatively flat first nine days, the race will head south and into the Alps and then the Pyrenees Mountains.

"I'd like to thank Greg because he did me a favor when he went for it".

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The Dutch cyclist, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo, clocked almost six hours over the 231-kilometer (143.5-mile) trek from Fougeres, home to the best-preserved and largest medieval fortress in Europe, to Chartres, site of a vast cathedral known for its stained-glass windows.

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