Kristoff claims his fifth victory of the season in Switzerland

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) used his powerful sprint to earn the victory in the 176km stage 5 of the Tour de Suisse from Buochs to Leuggern on Wednesday.

"I'm very happy with this victory," said Kristoff. "It's the fifth win of my 2013, I'm living a great season. I also know today it's the Independence Day in Russia: I'm happy I gave them another reason to celebrate."

The Norwegian rider defeated top challengers Peter Sagan (Cannondale) and Arnaud Demare (FDJ).

The sprinters' teams kept a four-man break under control during the relatively flat stage, and after they were caught with 23km to go, Katush began to set up its train for what would be a slightly uphill finishing straight.

Kristoff said, "Once again I have to thank my teammates: they did a great job, and I was in the best position in order to win. This performance confirms that I'm a good way toward my top form."

"Obviously, my goal is to take part in the Tour de France at my best, but I still want to put in some other good performance here in Switzerland."

This year, Kristoff also won three stages of the Tour of Norway and a stage of the Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde.

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