Demare won the bunch kick in front of the Paris Observatory in a photo finish ahead of Bahrain-Merida's Gorka Izagirre. Third place was also a photo finish with Christophe Laporte (Cofidis) rounding out the podium.
While the day was one for the sprinters, GC favourites Tejay van Garderen, a DNF, Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) and Illnuar Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) all had a day to forget. The latter two caught up in a crash inside 3km to race and now out of contention for the overall. For van Garderen, two separate crashes led to the American being pulled from the race and taken to hospital for precautionary testing. His BMC team announced he suffered a 'Cervical Sprain' Sunday evening.
Stage 2 of the race is expected to again feature a bunch sprint. Demare will start as race leader with four seconds on Izagirre and six on Laporte.