What ensued was far better, with 3 hours, 22 minutes and 43 seconds of bike racing at it's best, and Arnaud Demare coming away with a worthy stage win and the first leader's yellow jersey in this year's race.
"The conditions were tough and we were flat out with the echelons. I expected attacks from Julian Alaphilippe, Philippe Gilbert and Tony Gallopin, so I tried to follow. The climb at the end wasn't too long and that helped. I think there was general fatigue out there, and I had fantastic support out there with guys around me in the break. It's better than being alone and it helps both physically and psychologically.
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Daniel Benson is the Editor in Chief at both Cyclingnews.com and BikePerfect.com. Based in the UK, he has worked within cycling for almost 15 years, and he joined the Cyclingnews team in 2008 as the site's first UK-based Managing Editor. In that time, he has reported on over a dozen editions of the Tour de France, several World Championships, the Tour Down Under, Spring Classics, and the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the help of the excellent editorial team, he runs the coverage on Cyclingnews and has interviewed leading figures in the sport including UCI Presidents and Tour de France winners.
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