Paris-Nice 2019

March 10-17, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Nice, Road - WorldTour

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Barry Ryan

Paris-Nice: Sam Bennett claims third win of season
Paris-Nice: Race preview
Paris-Nice: Start list
Paris-Nice: Stage 3 race highlights – Video
First tests for tramadol carried out at Paris-Nice

  1. 11:14:54 CET

    The longest stage of the 2019 Paris-Nice brings the peloton from Vichy to Pélussin. The 212km leg brings the race into rather more rolling terrain, with five classified climbs on the menu. The category 3 Côte de Cheval-Rigon comes soon after the start in Vichy, but the succession of short but sharp hills in the final 60km provide a springboard for attackers. The Côte de Trèves, Côte de Condrieu, Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône and Côte de Chavanay all feature in the finale, while there are further dips and rises ahead of the finish in Pélussin. 

  2. 11:15:47 CET

    The peloton is on the start line and ready for the roll out, which is at 11.15am local time. The riders are scheduled to hit kilometre zero and the start proper at 11.30.


  3. 11:17:30 CET

    It has been a windswept, fast and typically tough Paris-Nice thus far. The general classification picture after 3 stages is as follows:


    1 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 11:47:44
    2 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:06
    3 Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:00:11
    4 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:16
    5 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky 0:00:17
    6 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:20
    7 Tony Gallopin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:21
    8 Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:23
    9 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
    10 Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:24
    11 Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
    12 Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:25
    13 André Greipel (Ger) Arkéa Samsic
    14 John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo
    15 Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
    16 Hugo Houle (Can) Astana Pro Team
    17 Mike Teunissen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma
    18 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
    19 Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Direct Energie
    20 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team


  4. 11:28:36 CET

    It's an overcast 7 degrees Celsius in Vichy at the start but, for now at least, there is little wind.


  5. 11:31:13 CET

    There is, however, a strong chance of some rather more inclement weather in the afternoon. Rain and perhaps hail are anticipated, while the wind is also expected to pick up.


  6. 210.5km remaining from 210.5km

    11:34:15 CET

    The flag has dropped and stage 4 of Paris-Nice is underway. There are no non-starters to report. 


  7. 11:44:15 CET

    Paris-Nice isn't the only WorldTour race this week, of course. Tirreno-Adriatico gets underway with a team time trial in Lido di Camaiore this afternoon and our man in Tuscany is, as ever, Stephen Farrand. He spoke to Julian Alaphilippe yesterday, and the Strade Bianche winner is perhaps the man to beat in the Race of the Two Seas. "Of course, we're happy with the start of the season. It's an incredible start for all of us. We don't want to stop winning; we hope it's just the beginning," Alaphilippe said. Read the full story here.

    Julian Alaphilippe is relaxed before the start of Tirreno-Adriatico


  8. 205km remaining from 210.5km

    11:44:47 CET

    There's a brisk early pace on stage 4 of Paris-Nice, but as yet no breakaway has taken shape.


  9. 202km remaining from 210.5km

    11:52:10 CET

    • Attack

    A group of seven riders has opened a small gap over the peloton. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Christoph Pfingsten (Bora-Hansgrohe), Julien Bernard (Trek-Segafredo), Olivier Le Gac (Groupama-FDJ), Mathias Le Turnier (Cofidis), Alessandro De Marchi (CCC Team) and Kevin Reza (Vital Concept) have forged clear.


  10. 200km remaining from 210.5km

    11:54:17 CET

    The group swells to 11 riders, as Magnus Cort (Astana), Damien Gaudin (Direct Energie), Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) and Elie Gesbert (Arkea-Samsic) bridge across to the earlier attackers.


  11. 11:55:57 CET

    The peloton seems content to allow this break to establish itself. A duo of riders from Delko-Marseille-Provence are desperately trying to forge across to the escapees.


  12. 198km remaining from 210.5km

    11:58:35 CET

    And then there were 13:  Eduard Grosu and Evaldas Siskevicus (Delko-Marseille-Provence) have made it up to the front group, which has 2 minutes in hand on the peloton.


  13. 11:59:12 CET

    The 13 escapees are: Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Christoph Pfingsten (Bora-Hansgrohe), Julien Bernard (Trek-Segafredo), Olivier Le Gac (Groupama-FDJ), Mathias Le Turnier (Cofidis), Alessandro De Marchi (CCC Team), Kevin Reza (Vital Concept), Magnus Cort (Astana), Damien Gaudin (Direct Energie), Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), Elie Gesbert (Arkea-Samsic), Eduard Grosu (Delko-Marseille-Provence) and Evaldas Siskevicus (Delko-Marseille-Provence).


  14. 192km remaining from 210.5km

    12:07:48 CET

    • Climb

    Grosu leads the break over the category 3 Côte de Cheval-Rigon. Gaudin, who leads the mountains classification, takes 2 points for second place, while De Gendt is third over the line.


  15. 12:16:42 CET

    Team Sky are currently setting the tempo in the peloton. The British squad have two potential overall winners in their line-up. Egan Bernal wears the white jersey of best young rider and has impressed with his calm navigation of the echelons in the three stages to date. Michal Kwiatkowski, meanwhile, lies second overall, just 6 seconds off the yellow jersey of Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma).


  16. 12:20:01 CET

    Liege-Bastogne-Liege may be the centrepiece of Kwiatkowski's spring, but he recently told Sadhbh O'Shea that he hasn't given up on one day targeting the Tour de France. "For sure, in the future being there as a leader is my moon-shot plan," Kwiatkowski told Cyclingnews. "I haven't had the chances like I did at QuickStep to ride with a sprinters' team and try to ride for the GC there. But the thought of trying to win has always been there with me, and it has been driving me to climb better and time trial better. It's not that the plan has to work out in the next couple of months; it's something that you have to work for over many years, but I'm making progress." Read the full story here.

    Team Sky's Michal Kwiatkowski leads Egan Bernal in the crosswinds during stage 1 at Paris-Nice


  17. 180km remaining from 210.5km

    12:22:45 CET

    For the time being, the peloton is content to allow the 13 escapees some leeway. On the approach to Moulin-Saint-Priest, the breakaway has a lead of 3:45 over the bunch.


  18. 12:31:45 CET

    Sam Bennett chalked up his third victory of 2019 yesterday, delivering a pitch-perfect sprint to claim the spoils ahead of Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal). With each passing week, Bora-Hansgrohe's decision not to send the Irishman to the Giro d'Italia - where he won three stages last year, remember - seems increasingly baffling. One wonders if the selection will be revised as the corsa rosa draws nearer. In the meantime, you can read a report on Bennett's latest victory here.

    Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe)


  19. 173km remaining from 210.5km

    12:35:04 CET

    Le Gac leads the break through St Priest la Prugne. Their lead over the peloton is up to 4:35.


  20. 12:46:51 CET

    Tramadol testing was officially introduced on March 1, and the first controls took place at Paris-Nice, with six riders called to provide samples after stage 2. The tests are carried out by taking a small amount of blood from the fingertip, and results are expected to be processed within four to five days. A first offence will see the rider in question disqualified from the race they're competing in and handed a CHF 5,000 fine. A second offence would see a rider disqualified and handed a five-month suspension. Any further offences will result in a rider receiving a nine-month ban.



  21. 165km remaining from 210.5km

    12:48:07 CET

    The break's lead is at 4:30 over the peloton. The escapees averaged 39.1kph in the first hour of racing.


  22. 160km remaining from 210.5km

    12:58:35 CET

    There is no urgency as yet in the peloton, with 100 miles still to race, and the break's lead has edged out to 5:30.


  23. 13:06:04 CET

    A reminder of the 13 riders in our early break: Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Christoph Pfingsten (Bora-Hansgrohe), Julien Bernard (Trek-Segafredo), Olivier Le Gac (Groupama-FDJ), Mathias Le Turnier (Cofidis), Alessandro De Marchi (CCC Team), Kevin Reza (Vital Concept), Magnus Cort (Astana), Damien Gaudin (Direct Energie), Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), Elie Gesbert (Arkea-Samsic), Eduard Grosu (Delko-Marseille-Provence) and Evaldas Siskevicus (Delko-Marseille-Provence).


  24. 150km remaining from 210.5km

    13:12:23 CET

    Thomas De Gendt abilities as a baroudeur no longer need an introduction, but it was on this very race in 2011 that he left one of his first calling cards at WorldTour level, when he was part of the break that - just - held off the peloton in Houdan on stage 1. The Belgian took the stage win and the overall lead, and has seemingly remained more or less permanently off the front of the peloton ever since.  



  25. 143km remaining from 210.5km

    13:23:52 CET

    The principal difficulties of today’s stage are packed into the final 60km or so. The category 2 Côte de Trèves (3km at 5.2%) comes after 152.5km, followed by the category Côte de Condrieu (1.9km at 8.5%) after 16.5km. The Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône (category 2: 3km at 6.6%) comes with 29km to go, while there are 10.5km from the Côte de Chavanay (category 2: 3.1km at 4.9%) and the finish.


  26. 13:25:46 CET

    The skies overhead are heavy with menacing dark clouds, but the rain has held off for the time being at least.


  27. 136km remaining from 210.5km

    13:26:48 CET

    The escapees have a buffer of 5:50 over the peloton. The highest-placed of their number on GC, incidentally, is Olivier Le Gac (Groupama-FDJ), who began the day 6:10 off Groenewegen's maillot jaune.


  28. 130km remaining from 210.5km

    13:40:06 CET

    A brief halt to proceedings as the peloton is forced to a stop for 3:30 at a level crossing. The commissaires also ordered the escapees to pull over at the roadside for 3:30 in order to maintain the gap. Both groups have since re-started. The gap remains at 5:50.


  29. 13:42:25 CET

    The break was aided by a tailwind for much of the second hour of racing, in which they covered some 48.9km. Per, the average speed after two hours of racing is 44kph.


  30. 117km remaining from 210.5km

    13:46:55 CET

    De Gendt, Gaudin and the escapees have responded better to that earlier neutralisation, and have extended their lead over the peloton to 6:25.


  31. 112km remaining from 210.5km

    13:54:09 CET

    That increase in the break's lead means that, for the first time today, Olivier Le Gac is the maillot jaune virtuel of Paris-Nice. The actual yellow jersey, Dylan Groenewegen, is sitting in the main peloton, 6:40 down on the break.


  32. 106km remaining from 210.5km

    14:05:01 CET

    While we reach the midway point at Paris-Nice, stage 1 of Tirreno-Adriatico is getting underway beneath driving rain at Lido di Camaiore. Patrick Fletcher has live updates from the opening day team time trial here.


  33. 100km remaining from 210.5km

    14:12:42 CET

    The break reaches Chazelles-sur-Lyon. With 100km remaining, they have 6:35 in hand on the peloton.


  34. 94km remaining from 210.5km

    14:23:59 CET

    Bahrain-Merida and Mitchelton-Scott are setting the tempo on the front of the peloton, and their combined efforts have shaved the break's lead back to 6 minutes.


  35. 86km remaining from 210.5km

    14:34:44 CET

    The peloton's increase in intensity means that the break's lead is gradually beginning to come down. 5:10 the gap.


  36. 82km remaining from 210.5km

    14:43:58 CET

    Mitchelton-Scott and Bahrain-Merida ratchet up the pace with Matteo Trentin and Sonny Colbrelli in mind, and the break's lead drops accordingly. The gap stands at 4:25.


  37. 77km remaining from 210.5km

    14:50:04 CET

    Deceuninck-QuickStep have now taken up the reins of pursuit in the main peloton, and the break's lead drops to 4 minutes.


  38. 14:51:37 CET

    • Crash

    A crash in the peloton sees Marcel Kittel (Katusha-Alpecin) come down but the German is quickly back on his bike.


  39. 14:53:48 CET

    The opening stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, meanwhile, has been marred by a crash involving Bora-Hansgrohe. A pedestrian walked across the road and into the path of the squad during their team time trial effort, bringing down Rafal Majka and Oscar Gatto. Read more on this story here, with more updates to follow from Stephen Farrand in Lido di Camaiore.


  40. 65km remaining from 210.5km

    15:04:39 CET

    The soaring pace has caused some riders to lose contact with the peloton, including Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal).


  41. 15:06:14 CET

    The break reaches the category 2 Côte de Trèves (3km at 5.2%) with a lead of 3:05 over the peloton. The stage takes on a rather different complexion from this point on. After Deceuninck-QuickStep's show of force, we might well see men like Philippe Gilbert and Bob Jungels feature prominently on this rugged finale.


  42. 15:07:28 CET

    The pace on the Côte de Trèves proves too much for some more of the sprint fraternity - yellow jersey Dylan Groenewegen is dropped, along with Kittel, John Degenkolb and Andre Greipel.


  43. 59km remaining from 210.5km

    15:09:26 CET

    • Red Polka Dot Jersey

    King of the mountains leader Damien Gaudin leads the break over the Côte de Trèves with a margin of 3 minutes over the bunch. Kevin Reza lost contact with the break on the climb.


  44. 50km remaining from 210.5km

    15:17:40 CET

    Into the final 50km, Mitchelton-Scott lead the peloton, and the break's lead is down to 2:40. 


  45. 15:18:54 CET

    Groenewegen and the dropped sprinters all appear to have regained the peloton, but with the terrain ahead, it might be only a temporary stay for the fast men.


  46. 47km remaining from 210.5km

    15:20:03 CET

    Deceuninck-QuickStep are on the front of the peloton, 2:28 down on the twelve surviving members of the break.


  47. 45km remaining from 210.5km

    15:22:26 CET

    The break are approaching the short and sharp category 1 Côte de Condrieu (1.9km at 8.5%) This obstacle could fracture the peloton.


  48. 15:26:02 CET

    Thomas De Gendt sets the pace in the break, and his efforts are putting some of his companions in difficulty. Mitchelton-Scott tap out the tempo in the bunch, and Groenewegen is among the riders struggling to remain in contact.


  49. 43km remaining from 210.5km

    15:28:18 CET

    • Climb

    De Gendt leads De Marchi over the top of the Côte de Condrieu. Only six riders have remained in touch with the Belgian at the summit, but there might be a regrouping of this break.


  50. 15:29:06 CET

    Mitchelton-Scott continue to dictate terms in the peloton, 2:33 down on the break. Groenewegen has just one teammate for company as he struggles off the back of the bunch. 


  51. 15:29:54 CET

    Andre Greipel, Jens Debusschere and Julien Vermote are also among the riders who have lost contact with the peloton on this short but sharp category 1 climb.


  52. 42km remaining from 210.5km

    15:30:38 CET

    For the time being, the selection is coming at the rear of the peloton, but the terrain is rolling all the way to the finish and lends itself to willing attackers.


  53. 15:32:09 CET

    Only five riders remain at the head of the race after that climb: Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Julien Bernard, Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), Alessandro De Marchi (CCC) and Elie Gesbert (Arkea-Samsic). This quintet has 2:45 in hand on the peloton.


  54. 15:32:34 CET

    John Degenkolb and Arnaud Demare are also among the fast men dropped by a much reduced peloton.


  55. 39km remaining from 210.5km

    15:34:59 CET

    The peloton is beginning to pick off the remnants of the break. They are 2:45 down on the five leaders. Alexander Kristoff, meanwhile, has joined the list of sprinters distanced by the bunch.


  56. 15:37:49 CET

    Le Turnier and Cort have battled their way back up to De Gendt and company, swelling the front group to 7 riders.


  57. 15:38:48 CET

    The seven leaders are Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Julien Bernard, Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo), Alessandro De Marchi (CCC), Elie Gesbert (Arkea-Samsic), Magnus Cort (Astana) and Mathias Le Turnier (Cofidis).


  58. 34km remaining from 210.5km

    15:41:06 CET

    QuickStep and Mitchelton-Scott lead the bunch on the approach to the category 2 Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône (3km at 6.6%). 2:30 the gap to the seven leaders.


  59. 15:43:38 CET

    • Crash

    Mikel Nieve (Mitchelton-Scott) overshoots a corner on the descent before the Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône, and he stops on the roadside to get a hand injury assessed.


  60. 31.5km remaining from 210.5km

    15:44:08 CET

    De Gendt and the leaders begin the Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône with 2:30 in hand on the peloton.


  61. 15:46:12 CET

    Simon Yates hits the front for Mitchelton-Scott as the bunch hits the climb, and the gap to the break drops again to just over 2 minutes.


  62. 15:48:23 CET

    Simon Yates continues on the front of the peloton for Mitchelton-Scott, with teammates Esteban Chaves, Jack Haig and Matteo Trentin lined up behind him. Sam Bennett joins the list of sprinters to lose contact with the bunch.


  63. 28.5km remaining from 210.5km

    15:51:49 CET

    • Climb

    De Gendt leads the break over the Côte de Saint-Michel-sur-Rhône with a lead of 1:50 over the Mitchelon-Scott-led peloton.


  64. 15:52:57 CET

    Philippe Gilbert, Bob Jungels, Michal Kwiatkowski and Egan Bernal are all loitering with intent near the head of the peloton. Miguel Angel Lopez, Domenico Pozzovivo and Marc Soler are showing signs of struggling towards the back.


  65. 26km remaining from 210.5km

    15:56:02 CET

    The race will pass the finish line in Pelussin with 20km to go, taking in one lap of a circuit that brings the riders over the category 2 Côte de Chavanay (3.1km at 4.9%), which comes 10.5km from the finish.


  66. 25km remaining from 210.5km

    15:58:27 CET

    Despite Mitchelton's pace-making, the seven leaders have combined well to maintain a buffer of 1:50. There is some decent firepower in this move, notably from De Gendt and De Marchi, and they certainly won't be pegged back without a fight.


  67. 16:00:28 CET

    Simon Yates has been generous in his efforts this afternoon, and he continues to work on behalf of Trentin over the other side of the climb. Bahrain-Merida have also joined the pursuit effort.


  68. 22km remaining from 210.5km

    16:02:29 CET

    Sebastian Henao (Sky) and Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott) have been distanced by the peloton on these heavy, rolling roads. 1:25 the gap to the break.


  69. 16:03:23 CET

    Bryan Coquard (Vital Concept) was among thew few fast men left in this reduced peloton, but he, too, has been jettisoned. A couple of Vital Concept teammates are waiting for him in the hope of pulling him back into contention before the finish.


  70. 20km remaining from 210.5km

    16:05:54 CET

    The break enter Pelussin and take the bell as they cross the finish line. The seven leaders have 1:25 in hand on the bunch.


  71. 16:07:01 CET

    Magnus Cort claimed the maximum 3 points on offer at the intermediate sprint. Simon Yates leads the bunch through the same point with a deficit of just 1:10.


  72. 16:07:41 CET

    Domenico Pozzovivo is rather better-positioned now than he was 10km or so ago. The Italian is in third wheel as the bunch enters the final 20km.


  73. 16km remaining from 210.5km

    16:09:39 CET

    We can surely expect fireworks on the category 2 Côte de Chavanay (3.1km at 4.9%), the summit of which is just 10.5km from the finish. The bunch is 1:14 behind De Gendt et al.


  74. 13.5km remaining from 210.5km

    16:12:40 CET

    De Gendt and the break begin the Côte de Chavanay with a lead of 1:05 over the peloton. It will surely be a rather tighter margin come the top.


  75. 16:14:00 CET

    Giulio Ciccone beat Thibaut Pinot and Romain Bardet to a stage win at the Tour du Haut Var, and the on-form Italian sets the tempo at the head of the break.


  76. 16:15:01 CET

    The bunch hits the climb and Domenico Pozzovivo takes over on the front with Sonny Colbrelli in mind. Simon Yates sits up, his job done, while Marc Soler (Movistar) has been dropped.


  77. 16:16:30 CET

    Julien Bernard puts in a long turn on behalf of his teammate Ciccone and then swings over. Gesbert and Le Turnier are also losing contact with the front group.


  78. 11.5km remaining from 210.5km

    16:17:34 CET

    Lawson Craddock (EF Education First) attacks from the peloton, opening a small gap. Sergio Henao (UAE Team Emirates) gives chase.


  79. 16:18:23 CET

    Only four riders remain up front: De Gendt, Cort, De Marchi and Ciccone. They have 48 seconds in hand on Henao and Craddock, with the reduced peloton just a little further back.


  80. 16:19:55 CET

    The Groenewegen group has come through the 20km to go mark with a deficit of 12:45 on the leaders. 


  81. 10km remaining from 210.5km

    16:20:40 CET

    De Gendt, De Marchi, Cort and Ciccone are over the top of the climb with 52 seconds in hand on Henao, Craddock and Julien Bernard, with the peloton just behind this trio.


  82. 9km remaining from 210.5km

    16:21:38 CET

    There are still four strong men left at the front of this race, and 55 seconds is still a decent gap. Henao, Craddock and Bernard have been caught by the peloton.


  83. 8km remaining from 210.5km

    16:22:50 CET

    There are no more classified climbs, but the road rises and dips continuously on the run-in to Pelussin. It is not a straightforward place in which to organise a chase effort, though Mitchelton-Scott have the quality to bring some cohesion to this chase. 51 seconds the gap.


  84. 7km remaining from 210.5km

    16:24:21 CET

    Domenico Pozzovivo puts in another long effort on the front, but the reduced peloton has stopped making inroads into the break's lead, which stands at 52 seconds.


  85. 6km remaining from 210.5km

    16:25:54 CET

    De Marchi, De Gendt, Cort and Ciccone still have 50 seconds in hand on the peloton, which is being led by Jack Haig. The Australian could do with some help if they are to peg back the leading quartet.


  86. 16:27:01 CET

    AG2R La Mondiale have numbers in this reduced peloton, and Romain Bardet's teammates have now to the front en masse.


  87. 5km remaining from 210.5km

    16:27:39 CET

    46 seconds the lead for De Marchi, De Gendt, Cort and Ciccone, who continue to display a united front at the head of the race.


  88. 16:28:43 CET

    As things stand, Michal Kwiatkowski is riding towards the overall lead, but the destiny of the stage win hangs very much in the balance. 


  89. 4km remaining from 210.5km

    16:29:29 CET

    44 seconds for the leading 4 as they hit the final 4km. AG2R lead the chase. Tao Geoghegan Hart, Bernal and Kwiatkowski are well placed for Team Sky.


  90. 3.5km remaining from 210.5km

    16:30:37 CET

    Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ) attacks from the peloton and opens a small gap.


  91. 3km remaining from 210.5km

    16:31:23 CET

    Lilian Calmejane (Direct Energie) gives chase, but they have 43 seconds to make up on the four leaders, who must fancy their chances of hanging on to fight it out for stage victory.


  92. 16:31:56 CET

    Bob Jungels takes over at the front of the peloton, but is it too late to claw back the four leaders?


  93. 2km remaining from 210.5km

    16:32:36 CET

    45 seconds for Cort, Ciccone, De Gendt and De Marchi as they enter the final 2km. Calmejane has joined Madouas in the no-man's land between the break and the bunch.


  94. 1km remaining from 210.5km

    16:33:21 CET

    The leaders have 48 seconds in hand as they enter the final kilometre... The winner will come from this quartet.


  95. 16:33:54 CET

    Magnus Cort looks over his shoulder and senses some hesitation from his companions. He puts his head down and accelerates, and this might be the winning attack...


  96. 16:34:16 CET

    De Gendt sets off in lone pursuit, but this looks to be a winning gap for Cort...


  97. 16:34:33 CET

    Magnus Cort (Astana) wins stage 4 of Paris-Nice.


  98. 16:34:56 CET

    Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) crosses the line in second, shaking his head in disappointment.


  99. 16:35:25 CET

    Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) clips away from Alessandro De Marchi (CCC) to take 4th.


  100. 16:36:34 CET

    Calmejane and Madouas just about hold off the bunch, 50 seconds down on Cort. Sonny Colbrelli's sprint is for 7th place rather than stage victory.


  101. 16:41:20 CET

    Magnus Cort's victory means that Astana have now won 16 races with ten different riders. An astonishing start to the season.


  102. 16:42:18 CET

    Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) takes over the yellow jersey, 5 seconds up on Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) and 10 ahead of Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck-QuickStep).


  103. 16:43:38 CET



    1 Magnus Cort Nielsen (Den) Astana Pro Team 5:03:49
    2 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:07
    3 Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:13
    4 Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) CCC Team 0:00:18
    5 Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Direct Energie 0:00:48
    6 Valentin Madouas (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:48
    7 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:00:48
    8 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:48
    9 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:48
    10 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:48


  104. 16:44:22 CET

    General classification after stage 4:

    1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 16:52:27
    2 Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:00:05
    3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:10
    4 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky 0:00:11
    5 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:14
    6 Tony Gallopin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:15
    7 Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:17
    8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:17
    9 Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:18
    10 Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:18


  105. 16:46:00 CET

    “Paris-Nice is one of the biggest stage races we have. It’s amazing to have a stage win here,” says Magnus Cort, who admits that his presence in the break was improvised: “It was not the official plan but I felt like it. I was feeling good in the first kilometre, so I thought why not try to get in the break, and once you’re in the break, the goal is to do the final.”


  106. 16:49:26 CET

    Cort was the fastest finisher by reputation in the break and found himself forced to lead into the final kilometre. De Gendt and De Marchi were eyeing one another up as they prepared to launch their attacks, and their impasse allowed a gap to open to Cort's rear wheel. Cort looked around, weighed up the options and then hammered his way clear. De Gendt gave chase almost immediately, but it was already far too late. Cort was given an inch (or, more accurately, four yards) and took the proverbial mile. 


  107. 16:52:41 CET

    “It’s both good and bad to be with strong guys in the break. It’s not easy to win but it makes your chances of staying away to the end better,” says Cort. “It’s amazing. It’s my first victory of the year. I’m really happy, the team is really happy. The season is going very, very well.”


  108. 17:21:53 CET

    Magnus Cort (Astana)


  109. 17:41:31 CET

    Magnus Cort wins stage 4 at Paris-Nice 

  110. 17:43:33 CET

    New overall leader Michal Kwiatkowski (Team Sky) speaks: "I'm holding this leader's jersey today because we have shown why we came here: to win the Paris-Nice GC. In the first couple of days, the whole team had to work hard. It was difficult to stay in the front all the time with the crosswinds and the splits. But all the guys were strong. It takes a lot of motivation to do that.”


  111. 17:44:34 CET

    Kwiatkowski's Sky teammate Egan Bernal lies 4th overall at 11 seconds. “Since I have the yellow jersey, I'm now the leader of the team but Egan can still do great things," Kwiatkowski said. "There are very hard stages ahead of us this weekend."


  112. 17:54:41 CET

    Michal Kwiatkowski in yellow after stage 4 at Paris-Nice


  113. 17:57:59 CET



    1 Magnus Cort Nielsen (Den) Astana Pro Team 5:03:49
    2 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:07
    3 Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:13
    4 Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) CCC Team 0:00:18
    5 Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Direct Energie 0:00:48
    6 Valentin Madouas (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:48
    7 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:00:48
    8 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:48
    9 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:48
    10 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:48


    General classification after stage 4


    1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 16:52:27
    2 Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana Pro Team 0:00:05
    3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:00:10
    4 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky 0:00:11
    5 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:14
    6 Tony Gallopin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:15
    7 Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:17
    8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:17
    9 Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:18
    10 Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:18


  114. 18:00:04 CET

    Thanks for following our live updates on Cyclingnews today. We'll be back with more from tomorrow's pivotal time trial. A full report, results and pictures from today's stage 4 of Paris-Nice are available here, and all the information from the opening stage of Tirreno-Adriatico is here.


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