André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) claimed his third victory of the season, timing his sprint perfectly into the headwind in Bour de Péage on stage 5 of Paris-Nice to beat Arnaud Démare (FDJ) and Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNl-Jumbo) by a clean pair of wheels.
It was the longest stage of the 75th Paris Nice, almost 200km in length, and with no major climbs and more pleasant weather than earlier in the week, the stage was the final day out for the sprinters.
The day's breakaway fell apart on the Côte de Saint Uze with 45km to go, and Démare’s FDJ and Kristoff’s Katusha trains finally reeled in the last escapees with 12km to the line.
Démare hit out hard in the sprint, but it was too early in the headwind, and Greipel jumped out from behind and snatched the victory from the former race leader.
The sprinters will take their seat in the autobus on Friday’s stage to Fayence, where five of the six climbs in the stage are in the final 80 kilometres.