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Paris-Nice stage 1 - Live coverage

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Hello there. The dust has barely settled on Strade Bianche but we're flipping immediately into stage racing mode. Tirreno-Adriatico starts tomorrow but Paris-Nice starts here, with the 'Race to the Sun' set to play out over the next week. It's one of the most prestigious week-long races on the calendar and there are plenty of big names in attendance.

The opening stage, which doesn't start in Paris and takes us no closer to Nice, is already underway. It's 160km starting and finishing in Mantes-la-Ville, with a largely flat route but a few hills near the end that could upset the sprinters.

As we pick up the action, with 90km remaining, we have a two-man breakaway of Matthew Holmes (Lotto Soudal) and Aimé De Gendt (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert). They have a modest advantage of just under two minutes.

QuickStep-AlphaVinyl have taken command of the peloton for much of the day and the gap has now fallen to below one minute. The Belgian team have the star sprinter Fabio Jakobsen in their ranks.

For a full look at the contenders and the route, here's our in-depth Paris-Nice race preview.

Paris-Nice is known for crosswinds, and it appears there's a threat of them here as the pace really ramps up in the bunch. We're still over 75km out...

73km to go

All together. That injection of pace wipes out the day's breakaway. Holmes and De Gendt are swallowed up by the bunch with 73km to go.

It's not super fast at the moment but teams are jostling to get organised in the prime positions near the front of the peloton.

Ineos are set up on the right, Jumbo-Visma on the left.

The wind isn't that strong but it is coming from the side for much of the day. It's not exposed here but will soon head out into the countryside

An injection of pace as they hit more open terrain. Will anyone try and spark an echelon?

It's super nervy now. This could kick off at any moment.

Through a town and the buildings offer some shelter. A respite.

Back out into the fields now and AG2R hit the front.

Thick trees now line the left-hand side of the road and that gives more shelter from the wind.

It looks like the wind won't be quite strong enough today to rip this race up. It would take a huge effort from a few teams, but most will be in defence mode, making sure they avoid getting caught out rather than trying to tear it up. 

Christophe Laporte is on the front for Jumbo. He's protecting Primoz Roglic, while Wout van Aert appears to be their card for the stage win today.

Groupama-FDJ take the left-hand side of the road now. They're here with Tour de France leaders David Gaudu and Michael Storer. 

Ineos, meanwhile, are the other team with numbers on the front. They're led by Adam Yates.

Things have calmed down considerably here. 

Hold on, a slight bend onto exposed terrain and Groupama accelerate out of it...

Jumbo and Ineos react. It stretches out

It regroups a little but that back of the bunch is completely lined out.

And now it's knocked off and it bunches back up.

It doesn't look like the wind is strong enough today to split this up properly.

50km to go

So, into the final 50 we go. We're heading south on this outward leg but we're about to turn east, and then soon back north, where the wind will be coming from the right in more of a cross-headwind. 

If you're just joining us, the day's two-man breakaway was swallowed up with 75km to go as the peloton accelerated under the threat of crosswinds. We've carried on in the pattern of high alert but nothing really happening for the past 25km.  

We've taken that left turn and we're now heading for the turn back north.

Bora, Total, and Trek have taken the opportunity to muscle their way to the front.

That's it settled down for sure. A nature break is called and plenty of riders stop. 

Crash. The sudden slowing leads to a spill and a Bora rider is down clutching his head and shoulder. It's Felix Grossschartner. 

Frederik Frison (Lotto Soudal) takes advantage of the detente to launch a breakaway attempt.

45km to go

A couple more riders react now

Alexis Gougeard (B&B) and Yevgeny Fedorov (Astana) are the two counter-attackers and they make their way over to Frison to form a trio.

Grossschartner has abandoned. 

TotalEnergies are here while their rider Alexandre Geniez still has an ongoing domestic violence case. The Frenchman was found guilty and given a suspended prison sentence this week but is appealing, which, the team say, means they cannot take disciplinary action. 

They had previously remained silent and only released a late and vague statement that made no mention of Geniez, but this morning team boss Jean-René Bernaudeau agreed to an interview with Cyclingnews. He defended his team's lack of action and argued that French laws left him 'powerless'. 

Full story.

40km to go

Into the final 40 and Frison, Gougeard, and Fedorov have opened a lead of 45 seconds.

QuickStep and Alpecin have started working to control the peloton. QuickStep have Jakobsen and a big lead-out train, while Alpecin have the in-form sprinter Jasper Philipsen.

34km to go

The terrain gets a bit more hilly from here on in. There's an intermediate sprint on the uncategorised rise at Boinvilliers with 30km to go, then the first of two ascents of the Côte de Breuil-Bois-Robert (1.2km at 6%). After that, they'll cross the finish line for the first time with 17km to go before going out for the finishing circuit, which takes the riders over the Côte de Breuil-Bois-Robert again before dipping down to the finish. 

Injection of pace here as Ineos are among the teams swarming to the front. 

A brief threat of wind, perhaps, but ultimately nothing comes of that. The gap to the leading trio does come down to 30 seconds though.

30km to go

Here comes the intermediate sprint and Fedorov takes it but no one actually sprinted for it.

Things have calmed down again in the bunch and the gap goes back out towards the one-minute mark.

25km to go

The gap goes up to 1:15 as the leaders hit the first of the two climbs.

The Côte de Breuil-Bois-Robert is 1.2km at an average gradient of 6%. It's a fairly narrow road. 

The top of the second ascent of this tops out 6km from the line. We'll see if we get any aggression.

The peloton hit it now and Jumbo and Ineos are both back occupying the front on opposite sides of the road.

Towards the top now and Fedorov is distanced

23km to go

Gougeard really opens the taps and he has dropped Frison, too. The Frenchman helps himself to the maximum three mountains points.

The trio will reform for the descent to the finish area. They still have 1:15 and a fighting chance today. 

It looks like a headwind here over the top of that climb. That will only increase the chances of a bunch sprint. 

QuickStep come to the front and lift the pace. Rohan Dennis also gets involved for Jumbo-Visma.

20km to go

The peloton ambled up the climb but they're now riding hard and taking time out of the breakaway trio. 45 seconds now. 

The leaders come into town and into the finishing barriers. They're on the home straight and the bell rings out.

17.7km to go

Frison, Gougeard, Fedorov cross the line and set out on the finishing loop. 

Small crash at the back of the bunch as they come towards the finish.

As well as Jakobsen and Philipsen, we also have Dylan Groenewegen (BikeExchange-Jayco), Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe), and Bryan Coquard (Cofidis) among the contenders today.

Campbell Stewart (BikeExchange) and Tobias Bayer (Alpecin) were the riders who went down in that crash but they're back on their way.

Time for the second intermediate sprint now and again it's Fedorov who grabs the points again by virtue of being on the front at the time.

15km to go

The peloton come across 25 seconds in arrears.

Groupama-FDJ and Arkea-Samsic take it up now.

Neither FDJ or Arkea have top sprinters here. They're working and practicing keeping their GC leaders safe - Gaudu and Storer for FDJ, Nairo Quintana for Arkea.

Jumbo-Visma raise the pace again and Van Aert is second wheel.

12km to go

Lef-thand turn and Jumbo continue on, with nathan Van Hooydonck on the front and Van Aert in the wheel. A bit more crosswind here again.

A big surge here as the wind threatens again. The break are just 9 seconds ahead now.

Back through a town and it should settle a little now without splitting. 

Ethan Hayter is off the back. He could have been a candidate for today's stage for Ineos.

11km to go

Breakaway caught as Jumbo-Visma continue this effort.

Dennis pulls off and drops as Teunissen takes it up.

Stefan Bissegger (EF) hits the front now. 

Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain) is dropped!

The bunch is lined out here under significant pressure. Colbrelli and Hayter shouldn't be getting dropped in these circumstances though.

Teunissen continues this through more sheltered terrain. Van Aert still sits second wheel.

We're about to dip down now ahead of the second ascent of the Beuil-Bois-Robert climb.

Teunissen pulls aside and Van Hooydonck takes it up again. Laporte is still there with Van Aert. 

Plenty of riders still being dropped here!

A group got split off the back, but the main bunch is still large. 

7km to go

DSM muscle through but Van Hooydonck re-establishes Jumbo's control as they hit the climb

Van Hooydonck gives it one huge last push and Laporte takes it up. They want to drop the pure sprinters here. 

Wow. Jumbo have torn this up already

A mini split off the front here as Laporte, Van Aert and Roglic go clear with just one QuickStep rider. It's a quartet. Wow.

Groenewegen and Bonifazio distanced

It's Stybar for QuickStep. 

Jakobsen is dropped from the chase group

And now Stybar loses contact up front!

5.5km to go

That leaves just three Jumbo riders out front over the top of the climb - Van Aert, Roglic, Laporte. Extraordinary.

The yellow trio plough on into the final 5km as the rest of the bunch starts to regoup behind.

This is remarkable stuff. Van Aert and Roglic are both turning with Laporte as they go all-in. 

10 seconds is their gap with 4.5km to go.

It's tough flat ground into a headwind here but they'll soon be zipping downhill

15 seconds now! 3.7km to go

The bunch has regrouped and started to reorganise but there's no one team with big numbers....

17 seconds now! 2.5km to go!

Incredible stuff this. Van Aert, Roglic, Laporte press on and hit 19 seconds. 

The chase is not organised. Riders are accelerating away but not properly working together to chase.

2km to go

The gap hits 20 seconds

Roglic is making gains on GC here already

There are 10 bonus seconds for the winner, 6 for second, 4 for third

Who do Jumbo-Visma choose to win? Perhaps Roglic for maximum bonus seconds

1km to go

23 seconds now as they pass under the flamme rouge

The mini TTT continues through the barriers. They're going to stay away for a famous 1-2-3.

They turn left into the home straight. 350m to go

Roglic leads them towards the line

Laporte is ushered through to take the win

Here comes the bunch. TotalEnergies attack and the damage is 20 seconds. 22 to the rest of the bunch. 

Schachmanna and Vlasov in a group losing closer to 40 seconds.

What a finish that was. Roglic has taken a near 30-second head start.

Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma 3:48:38
2Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
3Wout Van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma
4Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies 0:00:19
5Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:22
6Biniam Girmay (Eri) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
7Ivan Garcia Cortina (Spa) Movistar Team
8Fred Wright (GBr) Bahrain Victorious
9Jasper Philipsen (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
10Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team

General classification after stage 1
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma 3:48:28
2Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma 0:00:04
3Wout Van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma 0:00:06
4Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies 0:00:29
5Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:32
6Biniam Girmay (Eri) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
7Ivan Garcia Cortina (Spa) Movistar Team
8Fred Wright (GBr) Bahrain Victorious
9Jasper Philipsen (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
10Florian Senechal (Fra) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team

MANTESLAVILLE FRANCE MARCH 06 Wout Van Aert of Belgium Primoz Roglic of Slovenia Christophe Laporte of France and Team Jumbo Visma and Zdenek Stybar of Czech Republic and Team QuickStep Alpha Vinyl attack in the final kilometres during the 80th Paris Nice 2022 Stage 1 a 160km stage from ManteslaVille to ManteslaVille ParisNice WorldTour on March 06 2022 in ManteslaVille France Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images)

MANTESLAVILLE FRANCE MARCH 06 LR Wout Van Aert of Belgium Christophe Laporte of France stage winner and Primoz Roglic of Slovenia and Team Jumbo Visma celebrate crossing the finish line during the 80th Paris Nice 2022 Stage 1 a 160km stage from ManteslaVille to ManteslaVille ParisNice WorldTour on March 06 2022 in ManteslaVille France Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images)

JumboVismas French rider Christophe Laporte L JumboVismas Belgian rider Wout Van Aert C and JumboVismas Slovenian rider Primoz Roglic R celebrate after crossing the finish line at the end of the 1st stage of the 80th Paris Nice cycling race 160 km between ManteslaVille and ManteslaVille on March 6 2022 Photo by FRANCK FIFE AFP Photo by FRANCK FIFEAFP via Getty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Laporte speaks

“I have to thank the team. They told me in the final kilometre that it was for me, so it’s really a nice gift for me.

“I’ve won my first Paris-Nice stage and I’m in the yellow jersey. If someone had told me that at the start of the day I wouldn’t have believed it. To go to the finish with three, it’s incredible. The work we’ve done has paid off.”

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