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Tour de France 2020: Wout van Aert sprints to stage five win


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Tour de France 2020: Wout van Aert sprints to stage five win

Adam Yates finished fourth in the 2016 Tour and has not worn the yellow jersey beforeBritain’s Adam Yates moved into the lead of the Tour de France after Julian Alaphilippe was given a 20-second penalty on stage five, which was won by Wout van Aert. France’s Alaphilippe, who is now 16th overall, was penalised for…

Adam Yates celebrates taking the yellow jersey on the podium
Adam Yates finished fourth in the 2016 Tour and has not worn the yellow jersey before

Britain’s Adam Yates moved into the lead of the Tour de France after Julian Alaphilippe was given a 20-second penalty on stage five, which was won by Wout van Aert.

France’s Alaphilippe, who is now 16th overall, was penalised for taking a bottle from a team support member inside the final 20km.

Yates leads Primoz Roglic by three seconds in the yellow jersey.

“This is not the way I’d imagined taking the yellow jersey,” said Yates.

“If I’m honest, no one wants to take the jersey like this.

“I was looking to take the jersey on stage six anyway so I’ll go in with the same tactic – try to win the stage and see what happens.”

Yates is the ninth different British rider to lead the Tour and first since Geraint Thomas won in 2018.

Alaphilippe had led Yates by four seconds and looked to have retained the yellow jersey after finishing safely in the bunch in Privas.

But television images showed him being given a water bottle with 17.8km to go – under the rules of world governing body, the UCI, riders are not allowed to take on food or drink in the final 20km of a stage.

It was a bizarre way for the Frenchman to lose the jersey he had taken by winning stage two, especially after Deceuninck-Quick-Step had ridden on the front of the peloton for most of the day to protect Alaphilippe and set up sprinter Sam Bennett.

“I didn’t realise at all that it was unauthorised,” said Alaphilippe.

“It’s not a problem – I’ll pick myself up again and we’ll forget about it.”

Ireland’s Bennett was able to finish third behind Van Aert and Dutchman Cees Bol to take the green jersey off Peter Sagan, who was fourth.

Bennett is the first Irishman to lead any classification in the Tour since 1989, when the great Sean Kelly won the last of his four green jerseys.

By also beating Sagan in the intermediate sprint, Bennett showed his intent to challenge Sagan in the points classification, which the Slovakian is attempting to win for a record-extending eighth time.

“I’ve never had such mixed feelings in my career,” said Bennett.

“I’m really happy to have green but sad to have lost the stage.”

Van Aert shows off all-round skills

Wout van Aert puts his arms up in celebration after winning stage five of the 2020 Tour de France
Wout van Aert also won three world titles in cyclo-cross

Until a fast-paced finale and the confusion of Alaphilippe’s penalty, it had been an unremarkable day, with unusually no breakaway forming.

Sunweb were the only team able to form a lead-out for their sprinter Bol during the run-in, but Van Aert shrewdly latched on to the end of Sunweb’s train and powered past Bol in the final 50m.

A day after helping to pace Jumbo-Visma team-mate Roglic up the final climb to win stage four, Van Aert had beaten the best sprinters in the race – underlining why he is one of the most talented all-round riders in the world.

The 25-year-old, who now has two Tour stage wins after victory on debut last year, has also won Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche and a stage of the Criterium du Dauphine this season.

“It was the easiest stage I’ve ever done in a cycling race before that finish,” he said.

“I knew it was a stage that suited me and I’m just so happy I got the opportunity from the team to go for it. From now on I will support the team even more.”

Stage five result

1. Wout van Aert (Bel/Jumbo-Visma) 4hrs 21mins 22secs

2. Cees Bol (Ned/Team Sunweb) Same time

3. Sam Bennett (Ire/Deceuninck-Quick-Step)

4. Peter Sagan (Svk/Bora-Hansgrohe)

5. Jasper Stuyven (Bel/Trek-Segafredo)

6. Luka Mezgec (Slo/Mitchelton-Scott)

7. Bryan Coquard (Fra/B&B Hotels-Vital Concept)

8. Caleb Ewan (Aus/Lotto Soudal)

9. Clement Venturini (Fra/AG2R La Mondiale)

10. Hugo Hofstetter (Fra/Israel Start-up Nation)

General classification after stage five

1. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) 22hrs 28mins 30secs

2. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +3secs

3. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) +7secs

4. Guillaume Martin (Fra/Cofidis) +9secs

5. Egan Bernal (Col/Ineos Grenadiers) +13secs

6. Tom Dumoulin (Ned/Jumbo-Visma) Same time

7. Nairo Quintana (Col/Arkea-Samsic)

8. Esteban Chaves (Col/Mitchelton-Scott)

9. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana)

10. Romain Bardet (Fra/AG2R La Mondiale)

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