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Fournier holds fast to Circuit de la Sarthe lead in time trial

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Anton Vorobyev (Rus) Team Katusha

Anton Vorobyev (Rus) Team Katusha (Image credit: Tim de Waele/
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Marc Fournier (FDJ)

Marc Fournier (FDJ) (Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)
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Anton Vorobyev (Katusha)

Anton Vorobyev (Katusha) (Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)
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Marc Fournier (FDJ)

Marc Fournier (FDJ) (Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)

Marc Fournier of FDJ impressed for the second day in a row at the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire as he finished fifth in the 6.8km individual time trial and therefore increased his lead over his competitors for the general classification except for Jérôme Coppel (IAM Cycling) who narrowly lost the stage to Russian specialist Anton Vorobyev (Katusha).

"I'm happy," Vorobyev said. "I came here to target the time trial because I'm a specialist and to help [Tiago] Machado." Vorobyev was the U23 world champion against the clock beating Rohan Dennis by 44 seconds in Valkenburg in 2012. The 25-year-old only won two races since with the Russian time trial championship in 2014 and the prologue of the Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen last year.

After missing out on the victory in the first two stages with Sondre Holst Enger third and Matteo Pelucchi, IAM Cycling was frustrated again as Coppel and former world record holder Matthias Brändle completed the course less than one second slower than Vorobyev. They'll be the team to watch for FDJ in the seven laps of the queen stage that includes the ascent of the Monts des Avaloirs, the highest peak of western France at 416 metres above sea level.

"Very few riders like this climb because it badly hurts the legs," said Fournier who was born only 25km from there in Alençon. There'll be high expectations around the young Frenchman who defends an overall lead for the first time in a pro race.

"I'm over the moon," he commented. "I didn't expect to be in this situation at all. I came to this race out of the blue to replace Odd Christian Eiking who was sick. It was strange to see experienced riders like Sébastien Chavanel, Kevin Reza and Benoît Vaugrenard protecting me this morning. I knew I had good abilities for time trial but my time shows that I have recovered well from my breakaway yesterday."

Interestingly, Fournier wasn't riding on the new time trial bike developed by his team and French manufacturer Lapierre than has made FDJ a team time trial winner for the first time in 20 years at La Méditerranéenne, and later a third placed at the highly competitive similar event at Tirreno-Adriatico. "I felt strong," the 21 year old from Normandy realized. "It's fantastic to be so close to big names like Vorobyev, Coppel and Brändle. It proves how good my form is now."

With two stages to go, Fournier enjoys a 2:24 lead over Coppel and 2:38 over Thomas Voeckler who certainly hasn't said his last word. "The final win isn't acquired yet," he said. "But a two minutes margin is something. But now I can only believe in my chances."

Previously, Bernard Hinault (1975), Greg LeMond (1980), Thomas Löfkvist (2004) and Luke Durbridge (2012) have won the Circuit de la Sarthe at the age of 20 or 21.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Anton Vorobyev (Rus) Team Katusha0:08:12
2Jerome Coppel (Fra) IAM Cycling0:00:00
3Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling0:00:01
4Laurent Pichon (Fra) FDJ0:00:06
5Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ0:00:09
6Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:15
7Gert Joeaar (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:00:16
8Javier Moreno (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:17
9Gaetan Bille (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:00:17
10Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling0:00:18
11Mathias Frank (Swi) IAM Cycling0:00:19
12Kévin Reza (Fra) FDJ0:00:19
13Lasse Norman Hansen (Den) Stölting Service Group0:00:19
14Patrick Gretsch (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:20
15Arnaud Gerard (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:00:21
16Bryan Coquard (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:21
17Jens Mouris (Ned) Drapac Professional Cycling0:00:21
18Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha0:00:22
19Juan Jose Lobato (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:24
20Thomas Scully (NZl) Drapac Professional Cycling0:00:25
21Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:25
22Jorge Arcas Pena (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:27
23Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
24Peter Koning (Ned) Drapac Professional Cycling0:00:28
25Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:28
26Benoit Jarrier (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:00:30
27Stéphane Rossetto (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:00:31
28Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:00:32
29Leonardo Duque (Col) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:00:32
30Eliot Lietaer (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:00:33
31Romain Lemarchand (Fra) Stölting Service Group0:00:33
32Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:00:34
33Clément Venturini (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:00:34
34Serghei Tvetcov (Rom) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:00:35
35Nicolas Baldo (Fra) Team Roth0:00:35
36Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:36
37Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar Team
38Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ0:00:37
39Francis Mourey (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:00:37
40Martin Kohler (Swi) Team Roth0:00:38
41Cyril Gautier (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:38
42Julien El Fares (Fra) Delko Marseille Provence KTM
43Travis Meyer (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling0:00:39
44Loïc Chetout (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:00:39
45Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:41
46Romain Hardy (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:00:42
47Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:00:43
48Tony Hurel (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:44
49Brenton Jones (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling
50Angelo Tulik (Fra) Direct Energie0:00:44
51Frank Pasche (Swi) Team Roth0:00:45
52Huub Duijn (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:00:46
53Vicente Reynes (Spa) IAM Cycling0:00:46
54Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:46
55Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra) FDJ0:00:48
56Boris Dron (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:00:48
57Jens Wallays (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:00:48
58Tiziano Dall'Antonia (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:00:50
59Otto Vergaerde (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:00:52
60Delio Fernandez Cruz (Spa) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:00:52
61Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:00:53
62Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:00:54
63François Bidard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:55
64Julien Berard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:00:55
65Christian Mager (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:00:55
66Dries Van Gestel (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:00:55
67Vladimir Isaychev (Rus) Team Katusha0:00:57
68Luca Pacioni (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:00:57
69Rémy Di Gregorio (Fra) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:00:57
70Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:00:57
71Daniele Ratto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:00:58
72Daniel Diaz (Arg) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:00:58
73Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling0:00:59
74Nick Van Der Lijke (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:01:00
75Grischa Janorschke (Ger) Team Roth0:01:00
76Mark Mcnally (GBr) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:01:01
77Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) FDJ0:01:02
78Matvey Mamykin (Rus) Team Katusha0:01:03
79Dylan Page (Swi) Team Roth0:01:11
80Jef Van Meirhaeghe (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:01:11
81Chris Anker Sörensen (Den) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:01:12
82Giacomo Tomio (Ita) Team Roth0:01:13
83Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:01:14
84Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:01:14
85Raymond Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:01:15
86Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:01:17
87Dmitrii Kozonchuk (Rus) Team Katusha0:01:17
88Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar Team0:01:20
89Marc De Maar (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:01:21
90Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:01:22
91Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:01:30
92Marco Benfatto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:01:35

General classification after stage 2b
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ6:51:51
2Jerome Coppel (Fra) IAM Cycling0:02:24
3Laurent Pichon (Fra) FDJ0:02:29
4Bryan Coquard (Fra) Direct Energie0:02:32
5Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling0:02:37
6Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Direct Energie0:02:38
7Gaetan Bille (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:02:39
8Gert Joeaar (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
9Javier Moreno (Spa) Movistar Team0:02:40
10Mathias Frank (Swi) IAM Cycling0:02:42
11Kévin Reza (Fra) FDJ
12Lasse Norman Hansen (Den) Stölting Service Group
13Arnaud Gerard (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:02:44
14Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha0:02:45
15Juan Jose Lobato (Spa) Movistar Team0:02:48
16Thomas Scully (NZl) Drapac Professional Cycling
17Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie0:02:49
18Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:52
19Benoit Jarrier (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:02:53
20Stéphane Rossetto (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:02:54
21Leonardo Duque (Col) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:02:55
22Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
23Eliot Lietaer (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:02:56
24Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:02:57
25Clément Venturini (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:02:58
26Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar Team0:02:59
27Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ0:03:00
28Francis Mourey (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:03:01
29Cyril Gautier (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:02
30Julien El Fares (Fra) Delko Marseille Provence KTM
31Fabrice Jeandesboz (Fra) Direct Energie0:03:05
32Romain Hardy (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:06
33Angelo Tulik (Fra) Direct Energie0:03:07
34Huub Duijn (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:03:09
35Loïc Chetout (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
36Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team0:03:10
37Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra) FDJ0:03:11
38Otto Vergaerde (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:03:15
39Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:03:16
40Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:03:17
41Julien Berard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:18
42Daniele Ratto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:03:21
43Chris Anker Sörensen (Den) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:03:35
44Patrick Gretsch (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:41
45Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:53
46Martin Kohler (Swi) Team Roth0:04:04
47Brenton Jones (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling0:04:10
48Tiziano Dall'Antonia (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:04:17
49Rémy Di Gregorio (Fra) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:04:23
50Daniel Diaz (Arg) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:04:25
51Dmitrii Kozonchuk (Rus) Team Katusha0:04:44
52Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:04:56
53Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) FDJ0:05:28
54Anton Vorobyev (Rus) Team Katusha0:07:03
55Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:07:27
56Vicente Reynes (Spa) IAM Cycling0:07:31
57Christian Mager (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:07:39
58Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Stölting Service Group0:09:07
59Matvey Mamykin (Rus) Team Katusha0:09:22
60Tony Hurel (Fra) Direct Energie0:09:28
61Travis Meyer (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling0:10:28
62Romain Lemarchand (Fra) Stölting Service Group0:11:05
63Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
64Frank Pasche (Swi) Team Roth0:11:18
65Grischa Janorschke (Ger) Team Roth0:11:25
66François Bidard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:11:27
67Dries Van Gestel (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:11:28
68Vladimir Isaychev (Rus) Team Katusha0:11:29
69Luca Pacioni (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec
70Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Fortuneo - Vital Concept0:11:30
71Nick Van Der Lijke (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:11:32
72Dylan Page (Swi) Team Roth0:11:43
73Jef Van Meirhaeghe (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
74Raymond Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:11:46
75Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:11:47
76Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:11:54
77Jorge Arcas Pena (Spa) Movistar Team0:12:18
78Nicolas Baldo (Fra) Team Roth0:12:27
79Jens Wallays (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:12:40
80Delio Fernandez Cruz (Spa) Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:12:44
81Mark Mcnally (GBr) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:12:53
82Giacomo Tomio (Ita) Team Roth0:13:04
83Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:13:05
84Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar Team0:13:11
85Marc De Maar (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:13:12
86Marco Benfatto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:13:26
87Jens Mouris (Ned) Drapac Professional Cycling0:13:50
88Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling0:14:13
89Boris Dron (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:14:39
90Serghei Tvetcov (Rom) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:15:00
91Peter Koning (Ned) Drapac Professional Cycling0:15:24
92Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling0:26:28

Points classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Bryan Coquard (Fra) Direct Energie45pts
2Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ42
3Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling20
4Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling17
5Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ17
6Raymond Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton16
7Juan Jose Lobato (Spa) Movistar Team14
8Clément Venturini (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits14
9Grischa Janorschke (Ger) Team Roth13
10Anton Vorobyev (Rus) Team Katusha12
11Daniele Ratto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec12
12Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert12
13Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton10
14Brenton Jones (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling10
15Jerome Coppel (Fra) IAM Cycling9
16Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Stölting Service Group9
17Otto Vergaerde (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise8
18Marco Benfatto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec8
19Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling8
20Laurent Pichon (Fra) FDJ7
21Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale7
22Huub Duijn (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton7
23Dylan Page (Swi) Team Roth7
24Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec6
25Loïc Chetout (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits5
26Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Direct Energie5
27Benoit Jarrier (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept5
28Leonardo Duque (Col) Delko Marseille Provence KTM5
29Gert Joeaar (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits4
30Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale4
31Gaetan Bille (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert3
32Javier Moreno (Spa) Movistar Team3
33Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Fortuneo - Vital Concept3
34Eliot Lietaer (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise2
35Tiago Machado (Por) Team Katusha1
36Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Stölting Service Group1

Mountains classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ26pts
2Grischa Janorschke (Ger) Team Roth20
3Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise14
4Martin Kohler (Swi) Team Roth8
5Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale4
6Loïc Chetout (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits2
7Chris Anker Sörensen (Den) Fortuneo - Vital Concept2
8Tony Hurel (Fra) Direct Energie2
9Rémy Di Gregorio (Fra) Delko Marseille Provence KTM1
10Daniel Diaz (Arg) Delko Marseille Provence KTM1
11Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar Team1
12Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling1

Young rider classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ6:51:51
2Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling0:02:37
3Clément Venturini (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:02:58
4Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ0:03:00
5Otto Vergaerde (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:03:15
6Matvey Mamykin (Rus) Team Katusha0:09:22
7Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:11:05
8Frank Pasche (Swi) Team Roth0:11:18
9Dries Van Gestel (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:11:28
10Luca Pacioni (Ita) Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:11:29
11Dylan Page (Swi) Team Roth0:11:43
12Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:11:47
13Giacomo Tomio (Ita) Team Roth0:13:04

Teams classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
2IAM Cycling0:02:01
3Direct Energie0:02:43
4Movistar Team0:02:50
5Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:02:55
6AG2R La Mondiale0:03:06
7Fortuneo - Vital Concept
8Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise0:03:55
9Delko Marseille Provence KTM0:04:49
10Stölting Service Group0:07:37
11Team Katusha0:08:44
12Drapac Professional Cycling0:09:57
13Roompot - Oranje Peloton0:12:08
14Wanty - Groupe Gobert0:13:00
15Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec0:13:16
16Team Roth0:21:02
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